NFTs have piqued the interest of those both in and on the outskirts of the crypto world. In the marketing industry, more and more conversations are springing up about what NFTs could mean for brands. Even Gary Vaynerchuk’s tweets are NFT dominant right now.
Before diving into what we’ve been experimenting with in the NFT space, let’s cover the basics.
What are NFTs?
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are unique tokens (digital assets) that are transacted and recorded using blockchain networks like Ethereum. Unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum, and essentially all other cryptocurrencies, they cannot be divided into smaller denominations. One NFT represents one unique item. Think of it as a file, any type of file like an MP3 or JPEG except they cannot be duplicated or replaced. Plus, ownership cannot be falsified as everything is tracked on the blockchain network.
This is where the appeal kicks in.
Why are NFTs valuable?
As with being a collector of anything, whether it’s cars, art, baseball cards, and so on, a strong motivator is that feeling of ownership. Owning something unique or scarce that they see the beauty in (and are probably well aware it may appreciate in value). So although there are plenty of opinions being shared about how there is little value in NFTs (because why buy an NFT of pixelated graphic when you can right-click save the file?) there are millions of music, art, film, and sports lovers who would do anything to get their hands on an authentic collectible item, whether it’s tangible or not.
Why should brands care about NFTs?
For those of you who have avid customers that collect your real-life products – you have a following that will likely snap up your own NFTs. NBA Top Shots is a perfect example of this. By knowing their following has a love for collecting baseball cards, they have now been able to turn video footage captured from games into collectible items too – by transferring them into NFTs. The outcome so far? They’ve made $230 million in gross sales and have proven that there’s a market for owning “the best moments from NBA history”.
For others, this is where the experimenting begins.
How can NFTs be incorporated into marketing campaigns, product launches and competitions?
These are some of the questions we’ve been asking ourselves lately. So far we’ve seen the likes of Microsoft launch a game with Minecraft NFT rewards and Nike develop CryptoKick.
In the end, we decided to check out the NFT world first hand so that we can better navigate this new digital world and share our insights.
Major Tom x Trippiesteff Collaboration: from GIFs to NFTs
In November of 2020, we launched a video and series of animated GIFs for our 20th anniversary. These were produced by the digital artist ‘Trippiesteff’ (aka Steffen Heil) from Germany. Having enjoyed the experience, we decided to take it further. We turned it into an experiment to see how brands could leverage branded GIFs and how valuable they could be as a marketing asset. We began creating GIFs for key international days and applied social media and SEO tactics to boost their visibility. Through learning by doing, some of the subsequent GIFs that we produced became wildly popular and our New Year’s 2021 GIF, for example, received more than 50 million views in a matter of days.
When wondering about how we could experiment with NFTs, we leveraged these GIFs as a gateway. We decided to convert these GIFs to NFTs and sell them as original design and art. We produced a collection of twelve NFTs and have launched the ‘Major Tom x Trippiesteff Collection’ on the OpenSea NFT Marketplace. These prints range between $5 – $20 each and now you can own a part of Major Tom history.
It is possible to gain royalties from your NFTs being resold on the market thanks to blockchain technology. We set our royalty rate at 10% of the resale price and because of smart contracts, any payments will happen automatically – no need for us to chase them up.
Having only set this up last week we don’t have any results just yet, but we now have a solid understanding of how to create and distribute NFTs. We have also helped Trippiesteff launch his own digital art as the “Trippiesteff OC Collection” which includes six of his original designs.