It's beyond art
The debate about art – is it/isn’t it – misses the point.
Yes, it’s a Wild West and no-one yet knows where it’s going to lead (see our previous blog on this), but the noise over art, though important, isn’t the whole story at all.
We are currently working in the NFT space and have been listening to some of its market makers and tech visionaries.
Many have impressive financial backgrounds and see the future of NFT’s in a much wider way than just being art world disruptors.
The point is that art and collectibles are not the only applications for non-fungible tokens. The game is much bigger.
NFTs' ability to prove verified authenticity, provenance and ownership using blockchain technology, might make NFT’s work in many other markets. That’s the vision, and as NFTs mature, market first movers expect to see people to try out new uses.
Recap: How non fungible tokens work
- Anything that is ‘fungible’ implies that it could be replaced by something similar. Therefore, a fungible token is any type of token that you can replace with something similar. Conversely, NFTs are unique and cannot be interchangeable in any circumstances.
- Tokens are a key element in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency. They are accessible in various forms and are used for various reasons. A non-fungible token is one of the variants of tokens that have unique features and applications.
15 ways NFTs might be used. A wish list
The Big One. Cryptocurrency was designed as an alternative to the traditional financial institution infrastructure. Crypto assets do not depend on the centralized bank or government. Instead, they rely on blockchain technology. Part of the appeal of crypto is its decentralization, which is seen as undermining the power of central banks.
It's an emotive issue. See here for more on the complexities.
Topline, financial institutions are currently hesitant to fully engage in the cryptocurrency industry, but they want to find ways to enter the space. The future of innovation in commercial banking may well include crypto. Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology might offer valuable opportunities for banks, like the ability to offer greater security, trust, ownership proof, upgrading and streamlining financial services.
Wearables in real life. The term wearables refer to 3D clothing that your avatar can wear within a game such as Roblox. In 2021, the community was shocked when an NFT Gucci bag was resold for $4,115 which is more expensive than the real bag retailed for $3,400. With a growing population interested in owning digital assets over physical assets, we are likely to see the trend continue.
In 2022, Gap added a twist by announcing an NFT program called gap threads where you can claim a cloth IRL (in-real-life) by owning a certain set of NFTs. GAP created an interesting rule that encourages NFT buyers to commit to collecting a set and created competition by limiting the number of the IRL cloth to 100. Fashion retailers are predicted to follow suit creating and selling both virtual and physical wearables.
3. Pre-owned luxury brands/ proof of ownership
An NFT can help prove legitimate ownership when reselling. For example, a genuine, ethical diamond usually comes with a certificate of authenticity. This certificate is also a way of proving you have ownership rights. Anyone trying to resell the item without the certificate cannot confirm its authenticity and may have problems convincing buyers they are the rightful owner.
In fashion, consumers could verify the ownership of their items and accessories digitally, thereby reducing the risks of counterfeiting frauds. Users could just scan a simple QR code on the price tags with apparel and accessories that is in the form of an NFT.
4. Licenses and certifications
Verifying licensing and certifications. Course completion certificates, such as any other degree or license, are generally offered to successful candidates in digital form or in paper-based form. Universities and employers require replicas of the course completion document as references before they offer a position to someone in a company or an institute.
Administrators could save a lot of time by accessing such licenses with the functionalities of NFTs. Certificates and licenses in the form of NFTs take away the burden of record checking and verification. Subsequently, the approach also delivers an easier approach for storing evidence of course completion or licensing.
Crypto addresses. Ethereum Name Service and Unstoppable Domains present crypto addresses as NFTs. Some examples of NFT’s refer to myname.crypto or myname.eth. The crypto address of a user is similar to the Twitter or Instagram handle, with each name being unique.
6. Location-based NFTs
At the LA-based Bright Moments NFT Gallery, visitors were given access to mint a CryptoVenetian, with holders receiving exclusive benefits and access to drops at specific locations—eg landmarks, museums and galleries. This apparently is proved lucrative for both the attendees and the location.
7. Restaurant NFTs
While most NFTs are consumed visually, some are making it possible for tastebuds to participate. For one restauranteur, before dining, ownership of his restaurant NFT is required. The NFT will allow customers access to the restaurant, which will offer a cocktail lounge alongside a private culinary experience.
Celebrity Chef Marcus Samuelsson Harlem’s Red created a NFT that can be redeemed for a private dinner for four, accompanied by a piece of art that creatively depicts the chef’s fried chicken.
(Photo courtesy of Stella Artois)
8. DNA NFTs
Many genetics testing companies have faced scrutiny over their privacy actions regarding their users’ data. Nebula Genomics wants to prove that they take privacy seriously. It published its founder’s DNA data on the blockchain where it will live forever, unable to be removed.
9. Property NFTs
In traditional real estate, property transfer is labour-intensive and requires title management. Connecting a NFT with a physical property allows for straightforward usage and easy collateral, an idea Europe-based start-up, Propy, is already exploring. Propy offers a transaction platform with which each NFT comes with access to ownership transferred paperwork.
10. Sports-based NFTs
Sports collectibles are a natural application for NFTs—NBA Top Shot, a platform where people can collect NFTs of officially licensed video highlights, has taken off. Selling for $387k, the most expensive Top Shot was a clip of a LeBron James highlight where he emulates a famous Kobe Bryant dunk. Likewise, Autograph, a Tom Brady-backed startup, is an up-and-coming NFT platform that has partnered with big names, such as Tiger Woods, Naomi Osaka and Simone Biles.
11. Gaming NFTs
Gaming has a huge demand for unique items that are tradable and purchasable. Their rarity directly affects their price, and gamers are already familiar with the idea of valuable, digital items. Micro-transactions and in-game purchases have created a multi-billion dollar gaming industry that could tap into NFTs and blockchain technology.
12. Music NFTs
Like an image file or video, you can also attach audio to an NFT to create a collectible piece of music. Think of it as a digital “first edition” of a record. Attaching a song to an NFT is similar to art but there are other use cases.
A big issue for musicians is getting a fair share of royalties – especially streaming. But there are at least two possible ways to achieve a balanced outcome: blockchain-based streaming platforms and blockchain royalty tracking.
13. Logistics NFTs
Blockchain technology can be useful in the logistics industry as well, particularly because of its immutability and transparency. These aspects ensure that supply chain data remains authentic and reliable. With food, commodities, and other perishable goods, it’s important to know where they have been and for how long.
NFT’s can track a product that contains meta-data on its origins, journey, and warehouse location. For example:
- A high-end pair of luxury shoes are created at a factory in Italy. It's assigned an NFT you can quickly scan on its packaging.
- Timestamped metadata is included of when and where the shoes were created.
- As the product goes through the supply chain, the NFT is scanned, and new timestamped metadata is added. The data could include its warehouse location and time of arrival or departure.
- Once the shoes arrive at their final destination, a store can scan them and mark them as received. An exact detailed history is available to view and confirm the shoes' authenticity and logistic journey.
14. Consumer loyalty programmes
NFTs can improve loyalty programs as they offer customers more than just points for future use. For example, Clinique, a cosmetics brand, offers the chance to win unique digital artworks to its loyalty scheme members, as well as be rewarded with several cosmetic products in one year.
Coca-Cola recently auctioned ‘loot boxes’ of NFTs, including digital apparel that can be displayed in the metaverse platform, Decentraland (MANA).
15. Memberships/ communities
NFTs provide an excellent vehicle to prove membership in a club, community, or group. They could be used as digital tickets to gain entry to a brand’s collection of products. Alternatively, an NFT-powered subscription membership could provide access to exclusive items, such as early access to gated offerings and limited edition products.
For instance, VeeFriends is a community-driven NFT platform that houses Gary Vaynerchuk’s NFT collection. By owning a VeeFriend NFT, you get to join the VeeFriends community and use it as an access pass to VeeCon, a multi-day event exclusively for NFT holders.
NFT help is at hand
Just contact us.
Anew are Real World brand development and marketing specialists for ambitious businesses of excellence, with a foot in the Metaverse. And we have associates who can advise specifically on this New World.
Whether it’s insight from research, strategic brand thinking, a new brand name and logo design, messaging, online and offline content or website development, we help companies increase brand profitability through sharper insights, distinctive propositions, creative ideas and faultless execution.
We are particularly adept at working directly with luxury brands, business owners, start-ups and entrepreneurs who are committed to sustainability, outstanding quality, and craft.
Based in the heart of London, we'd be delighted to meet for a coffee, either face-to-face or virtually, to discuss any new projects you might be considering.
With respect and thanks to the following: