Artists and creators are the primary users and sellers of NFTs, but creative agencies should pay attention, too. The global NFT market is currently valued at roughly $3 billion, according to a MarketsAndMarkets report, and NFTs provide opportunities to engage with clients and audiences in new and innovative ways.
As major brands like Nike, Taco Bell, Charmin and Hot Wheels stake their claim in the NFT space, creative agencies should determine the best way to advise their clients on how to deploy their own NFTs. That means brushing up on the emerging tech to understand the true realm of possibilities.
Read on to learn how you can leverage NFTs for your clients.
But first, what are NFTs?
An NFT, or non-fungible-token, is a virtual certificate of authenticity that represents a digital file, including images, videos, audio files, tweets, e-books and pieces of code. Any supported digital file can be "minted" into a digital token, which is the NFT. These tokens are then put on the blockchain to ensure they’re one of a kind. To mint a file into an NFT, creators must pay a small fee. Once minted, the NFT can be purchased and traded in an NFT marketplace like Opensea.io or Rarible.com.
The uniqueness of NFTs is what makes them valuable to collect and trade (compared to traditional virtual assets which can be easily copied). Use them in marketing campaigns, event tickets and creative experiences to generate sales and engagement for your clients.
NFT ideas for your agency’s clients
Here are some NFT ideas and examples to spark creativity for your own clients, based on a few common goals.
Best for brand clout Digital fashion
One promising avenue for your client’s NFT projects are digital fashion marketplaces, wherein platforms such as The Dematerialised empower users to buy and sell e-clothing. Another startup, The Fabricant, sold its first ever drop for $9,500, a testament to the financial feasibility of NFT fashion. While some users never plan on wearing their virtual clothes, others are decking out their avatars and plunging into games, social messenger chats and augmented reality filters. Others are saving their e-wardrobe for the metaverse, eager to show-off their unique items. The benefit for your clients: there’s an early-mover advantage to learn from the project, gain cultural cred and PR, and add a new line of revenue.
Best for brand experiences NFT events In the digital world, NFTs can be used to power new types of digital experiences: things like virtual concerts, art galleries and fashion shows. Back in the physical world, social media giant Gary Vaynerchuk’s ‘VeeCon’ was the first ever NFT-ticketed event, a nod to the potential for NFTs beyond artwork. It proved to be a great method for creating a sense of exclusivity for a client’s event via custom tickets with limited availability.
Best for partnerships Physical NFTs
Not all NFTs are purely digital. If your client is a retailer, adding a physical component is a viable option for elevating the perceived value of NFT-related projects. For instance, Urban Outfitters recently partnered with Cryptoon Goonz to create graphic tees and pullovers featuring Cryptoon Goonz designs, and Macy’s celebrated its Fourth of July Fireworks event by launching a collection of 10,000 free NFTs via a Discord Channel to educate consumers on other NFTs showcased during the event. ‘Phyigital’ NFTs make the best of both the physical and digital worlds, offering tangible value in the former and collectible value in the latter.
Best for sales NFT collectibles
Platform marketplaces such as NBA topshot offer a place to buy and sell digital collectible cards. But instead of the cards being players, they’re video highlights of top NBA moments. Another is Decentraland, a 3D browser-based platform where users buy plots of virtual land, artwork and avatars via MANA, a cryptocurrency that uses the Ethereum blockchain. In Decentraland, you buy an NFT painting and hang it on your NFT wall inside your NFT house, which sits on your NFT plot of land. Well, you get the picture. It might be a heavy lift for agencies, but it makes for excellent recurring revenue for your clients.
Next steps for creative agencies
If you’re feeling inspired, check out these four steps to crafting and executing an NFT strategy for your clients.
1. Craft your go-to-market strategy
Coming to a decision as to what NFT you want to mint shouldn’t happen in a vacuum. First, determine your client’s goals (i.e. generating brand awareness vs sales) and match the NFT category to their desired results. Also consider the industry your clients are in, as well as their audience. How much can your clients’ customers afford to spend, and what is the context surrounding their decision to start an NFT project? Will they be buying, selling and trading these NFTs, or collecting them like trophies? Will the NFT expire, or is it permanent? Do you need to build out a whole platform/marketplace, or can you sell the NFT on another platform? Look to the pain points of your client’s audience, and find creative solutions that integrate NFTs and blockchain technology. Context is everything.
2. Choose a crypto wallet and marketplace
NFT fees can only be paid in crypto. This means you’ll need to use a crypto-wallet and consider the distribution method. You can experiment with auctions, bundle sales, discounts, referrals and lotteries in marketplaces to boost NFT sales. Some of the most ambitious projects even build and deploy their own blockchains to center the theme of the trading ecosystem around their project.
3. Commission an artist or leverage in-house talent
Strong creative is central to a successful NFT launch, so businesses are increasingly commissioning artists to create NFT artworks and avatars. Whether in-house or freelance, the type of artist you hire largely depends on the strategy you’ve articulated before.
4. Stay diligent in marketing and maintaining your NFT project
Though much of the strategic work happens before launch, you'll still need to make sure your project is a success. Make sure to build clear lines of communication between your clients and their customers for ongoing support.
Most importantly, agencies should know that just about anything can be minted into an NFT, but just because you can mint an NFT doesn’t guarantee it will sell. Creativity is key to generating value for your clients, with NFTs and always.
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