When you think you’re ‘in the know’ of all current abbreviations, jargon, and memes, along comes something new, like Bitcoin, Crypto, and NFT. And it isn’t just something you hear around the water cooler at work, either. Professional athletes, actors, actresses, and recording stars promote non-fungible tokens or NFTs.
So, we’ve heard about Bitcoin and Crypto (short for cryptocurrency). Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, along with Altcoin and many others. Bitcoin rules as far as popularity and security so far. But what is an NFT short of a non-fungible token?
Like Bitcoin, an NFT is another form of a digital asset. They can’t be replaced or swapped with a phony because they are generated on a blockchain traceable to their original creator or owner. NFTs aren’t just “money,” though. Until 2017, NFTs were considered a novelty, but today, art, certificates of authenticity, collectibles, coupons, contracts, memorabilia, music, and videos are categorized as NFTs. Even your health records, ID files, and more.
With CrypoKitties and CryptoPunks being introduced in 2017, NFTs gained a new perspective with these digital trading card collections. In 2018, NFT sales hit $40 million according to nonfugible.com, and when 2020 came to an end, the adoption and sales were still growing. Now in the mainstream, NFTs have exceeded over $330 million in annual sales.
Why? –Thanks in part to the NBA’s launch of the NBA’s Top Shot NFT website. With more than $50 million each since 2020, once it is purchased, the digital assets go into safekeeping storage offline or online in digital wallets.
NFT growth is still skyrocketing!
According to Non-Fungible Tokens Quarterly Report: Q2 2021 Report, this was a record-breaker at the three-month window for the NFT industry. The report from nonfugible.com, over $500 million were traded, and another 40% traded over $700 million.
The Q2 saw over 175,000 active wallets, a new record indicating interest growth. There is still a growing interest from buyers (almost 40%) and sellers (over 25%), and those numbers are still increasing. More buyers than sellers mean that NFTs have a higher uptake rate than grinding down.
Humans like to collect things, which is one of the big reasons the adoption rate is growing, and NFT sales are increasing. Coupled with the fact that NFTs are designed to be scarce, the theory of primary economic states that a shortage of almost anything increases prices. Take gasoline, for example, or more recently, toilet paper.
Additional aspects of NFTs include:
- Digital perpetuity: If a blockchain exists, it will exist.
- Cannot be faked or forged: Authenticity can be confirmed by checking the blockchain by anyone.
- Verifiable ownership: The ownership can be verified if an NFT is programmed to be resold.
NFTs can Boost Local Business
So, what does all of this mean for your small business? It is an opportunity! With the NFT mania right now, you can give your small businesses a boost and keep your current customer base with these 5 ways:
- Counterfeit-proof your single-use promotional tools like BOGO deals, coupons, event tickets, and promotional discounts with blockchain codes or QR codes. They can’t be copied, making them tamper-proof and protecting your discount assets.
- Establish a loyalty program for your customers with a digital NFT loyalty card. Once a customer is signed up, they download it on their mobile device and scan it each time they do business with your company. They can accrue loyalty points. Then with thresholds you’ve determined, you can push discounts, rewards, or blockchain tokens for in-store use.
- Cause-related marketing and support charities with NFTs for your local neighborhood, city, town, or state that stimulates geographic-affinity marketing or supports a local charity.
- Secure expansion fundraising for your business to open additional locations or to expand your existing site, with an NFT campaign. This is a low-cost alternative to funding instead of high-interest rate bank loans.
- Games and sweepstakes for promotions are typically expensive but can be lessened using a little creativity with NFTs. For example, launch a digital NFT scavenger hunt to drive customer traffic to your business.
It is Time – Get Your NFT!
NFTs are worth giving a try no matter how you get started. Even those who are only somewhat Internet savvy can refer to free articles and videos found online to learn how to DIY an NFT. If you’re not the kind of person with interest, patience, or time, hire a freelancer to complete an entire NFT project.