NFTs have proven to be the darling of the blockchain. With notable artists, musicians and even sports stars releasing their own private pieces and collections. The most notable milestones were the Beeple piece, THE FIRST 5000 DAYS, which was auctioned off at Christie’s for $69 million. This proved to be a turning point for digital art and NFTs, which had gone from a place of digitized meme’s like Jack Dorsey’s first Tweet, gifs and songs, to an awakening of modern art,

More than just collectible, this was a way that the art world could display more pieces to more people. It took art away from the few, where a piece attached to someone’s wall could now be viewed by millions of people in a digital gallery.

However, NFTs hit a bump in the road. The news hit hard about how the minting of one single NFT could consume the same amount of energy as a household in the EU would use over the course of a full month. This marked a turning point for NFTs, with critics claiming that NFTs were bad news.

And yet, despite the critics, according to Reuters, the market for NFTs surged to new highs in 2Q21, with $2.5 billion in sales so far, compared to just $13.7 million in the first half of 2020. And still, sales volumes are skyrocketing as OpenSea, a leading  NFT marketplace, reports monthly sales volumes reaching a record high in June.

There is, however, so much more to NFTs than meets the eye. This is an age where literally any tangible asset can be tokenized. Where backing up a token with a real asset brings many benefits, from security, automatic authentication and verification of ownership and a logistical solution to the delivery and storage of goods.

Let’s look at some of the key themes where NFTs are leaving their footprint:

Fine Wine

The current market for vineyard owners is tough. They often borrow money each season for the development of their vineyard as well for the growing, cultivation, and manufacture of their product. And yet, they do not see any return on their borrowings for months or even years until their wine has gone out into the world. If they have a bad harvest one year due to weather or infestations, this puts them at risk of default. Tokenizing their product is like collateralizing against current or future produce, in a similar way to how futures on commodities works.

WiV is a project that is tokenizing collectible (and drinkable) fine wines. Collectible wines are popular as an alternative investment for investors looking to weather bear markets, by allocating alternative investment into their portfolios. WiV gives its investors a token to represent ownership of the wine they purchase. This means that investors don’t need to concern themselves with the logistics and authenticity of the wine. WiV, whose goal is to “become THE source for Wine collecting on the blockchain, and in all Metaverses’ , also serve an important role for winegrowers and vineyards.

Tokenizing Game Items

For real die-hard gamers, in-game collectibles are important. They are something to work towards, something to collect and something to be proud of after having spent hours working to collect them. For gamers, the thought of having real-life ownership of their collectibles, in a way in which they can keep them, sell them or use them in other games is a big deal. (you have to be a gamer to get it) and with the gaming industry heating up, this is big business.

The Hoard Marketplace allows users to trade, buy, sell, loan, or rent non-fungible tokens (NFTs), such as for in-game items, as well as for digital art, and also domain names. Hoard gives game developers the foundation to merge their game items with the Ethereum blockchain. Users of Hoard “meet” in a peer-to-peer environment to forge an interaction between gamers and developers.  The HRD token represents the tradable assets behind it, such as game items. On top of that, holders of the token can stake their tokens for passive yield, and transact with them and retain voting rights. Hoard is even promoting flash loans, which are instant loans to users, no credit checks are necessary.

“The Loan feature on the Hoard Market opens new possibilities for NFT holders. This is the first step of further development of novel NFTs functionalities/utilities which Hoard is going to introduce in the coming months”, said Radek Zagórowicz, CEO of Hoard.

Trading Card Collectibles

People love collecting things. The newest and hottest fad to hit the blockchain is tokenized trading cards. Many NFT marketplaces offer collectible trading cards, which can be collected, swapped and sold for profit, and this is a popular niche.

Tarasca has built a product around this niche for B2B, which gives businesses the chance to build their own private trading cards, which they can give out to their customers, or indeed they can build an entire business around trading card collections.  The more rare or customized a trading card or NFT is, the greater its value. With Tarasca users can create, and exchange collectibles using their DEX.

Monetizing NFTs

The key to the popularity of NFTs and other products in the blockchain is mass adoption. The more people that get on board, effectively the better the longevity and future potential of this unique arena. The trick here is creating products that appeal to the masses by being accessible.

One company that is working on this is Spores Network. They are creator-centric and offer users the chance to mint and transfer at a reasonable price, therefore increasing the users’ profit potential. They do this through a variety of ways, not least by royalty sharing with creators. Spores is working on creating the very first NFT marketplace to sit on the Cardano blockchain, which comes with many advantages. These include the energy efficiency and super low transaction fees related to mining and minting when compared to both Ethereum and Bitcoin.

NFTs for Marketing Campaigns

As everything is happening online now, NFTs prove to be an effective way for marketeers to gift and incentivize users, in an automated and trustless fashion. Enjin, a leading ecosystem for NFTs, recently launched their “MyFirstNFT” marketing campaign, which has set the stage for the way we conduct marketing online. A new method for brands to directly interact with their customers, with no digital agency in the middle. This campaign saw 50,000 one-of-a-kind digital art NFTs being dropped to a completely random set of users who had interacted with its ads and social media posts.

The Bottom Line

The bounds and potential of NFTs and the blockchain are infinite. If you can think it, then you can build it. One thing that we have learned over the last year, is that people’s habits and patterns can change fast, none less than digital interactions. NFTs are not dead, they have barely gotten started.


Image source: DepositPhotos.


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