NFTs first entered the scene in 2014 with the creation of “Quantum” by Kevin McCoy. Quantum is now valued at $7 million.
The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) was formed in 2021 and became one of the most popular and highly-valued collections of NFTs. The concept of an NFT series was relatively new then, and a whole new community of “collectors” entered the NFT scene soon after.
Today, the NFT market is vastly different, with both big brands and independent creators globally showcasing their messages and talents.
Starbucks is the first major brand to use NFTs to reward loyal coffee/tea drinkers. Always a leader in using technology in its loyalty-building, the company is taking Starbucks loyalists on an innovative journey (literally). Starbucks Odyssey leverages Web3 technology to give its community first access to both art and experiences.
Another major brand entering the NFT world is Taco Bell. Perhaps you’re hungry for a digital taco? Or, you want to trade your virtual snacks for real ones. The brand has created an integrated program for its loyal diners and the people who love NFTs but haven’t yet tasted the food chain’s crunchy delights. Smart and spicy!
Did you know that Coca-Cola auctioned an NFT for $575,000 on OpenSea and donated the proceeds to Special Olympics International?
McDonald also launched an NFT campaign to celebrate its 40th McRib anniversary.
Food brands are not the only companies that are taking a bite out of the NFT market. Lifestyle brands are also discovering the power of NFTs in their marketing and loyalty-building.
For example, Lamborghini launched a limited-edition NFT campaign, which aligns with the pride the brand takes in the luxury and rarity of its cars.
More and more tech companies are leveraging NFTs to improve their own marketing technologies. For example, see how the popular Samsung TV now hosts an NFT platform here and how Salesforce’s NFT cloud allows users to mint and sell NFTs on their platform.
Asics recently teamed up with fitness tracking app STPN to create virtual sneakers. Nike and Adidas also entered the virtual clothing market with their own NFT collections.
As you may have noticed, smart NFT marketers are looking at the entire integrated experience and not just the token. Take for example Asics’ virtual sneaker collection- the NFT sneakers you buy can help you compete in virtual sports.
Even luxury brands are partnering with tech companies to create unparalleled digital experiences for customers. Gucci teamed up with toy giant Superplastic to launch SUPERGUCCI, a limited series of CryptoJanky NFTs and ceramic sculptures.
The apes are no longer alone. In addition to the BAYC, we now have Crypto Punks, Cool Cats, and the Catalina Whale Mixer. Not all collections are animals or people. The trend that began with Quantum is still alive and well, and geometric and conceptual designs remain popular.
As the Metaverse and Web3 take shape, NFT artists and brands are looking for ways to make their tokens “come alive” with utility NFTs. Utility NFTs have a practical purpose. They offer buyers a unique purchasing power for things like membership benefits, tickets, content, or experiences.
Here are a few examples we find especially interesting:
- Coachella’s NFT Collectibles allowed buyers to “own lifetime festival passes, unlock unique on-site experiences, physical items, digital collectibles, and future virtual adventures.”
- Tom Brady’s NFT platform, Autograph, leverages NFTs to offer buyers the chance to meet famous sports players and access signed collectibles.
- Flyfish Club is an NFT restaurant where a membership card can grant you access to a private dining experience in New York City.
Because bigger brands have the resources to experiment and invest in creating NFT experiences, they are currently paving the way for NFT innovation. But, that doesn’t mean smaller companies can’t benefit from their teachings. Speaking of which…
Despite the influx of larger companies into the NFT space, independent artists and creators still have their place in this democratized Web3 world.
Big brands are seeking out small independent creators with big ideas and followings to collaborate on programs.
And our company zeNFT remains committed to enabling every creator to make a name for themselves in the rapidly-changing NFT world. We are no longer living only in the “Planet of the Apes.” Anyone with a bold creative idea can have a seat at the table (and on the screen).
Sign up for early access to zeNFT here.