A report by Marc Horgues and Adrien Susini from the OK C’est Cool agency.
While the microcosm of advertising found itself on the Croisette last week and the party was in full swing for the return of the Cannes festival, another event was held from June 20 to 23 in the city that never sleeps: NFT.NYC.
After its recognized success last year, 15,000 people from the web3 ecosystem gathered in the heart of Time Square for 3 days of conferences, meetings and parties. With more than 350 parallel events, the entire city vibrated for a week to the rhythm imposed by the major collections. But this year, unlike the previous edition, the brands were present at the party, and at the heart of many conversations.
OK C’EST COOL is convinced that these new territories allow brands to explore new ways of communicating, engaging communities, and innovating with ever more creativity.
The agency of Marc Horgues – one of the guests of our show dedicated to the metaverse – and Adrien Susini was therefore on site. Here is their decryption of the 10 key trends observed this year.
1. Fear of Bear
“NFT are the most successful products since the launch of the smartphone. »
It was the shadow that hung over all conversations: the bear market. This term, in opposition to the bull market, announces a down market. The fall of cryptocurrencies has indeed a real impact on all players in the sector, and NFTs are not spared. However, a key fact to remember: even if the market decreases in value, it does not decrease in volume. Put simply, people continue to buy and invest in NFTs, even though they are worth less than before. And with an average spend per user of $929 per year, the market still looks promising.
Can brands get out of the game? We believe that by establishing a long-term strategy, aimed at participating in building the ecosystemdrawing on the full power of their presence in the physical world, they can be the big winners in this troubled time.
2. Safety is key
” Freedom and responsibility also share two sides of the same coin. »
Mo El-Sayed, content lead, Ledger
This concern of brands is legitimate: in a deregulated sector, taking on board consumers who are not very aware of the risks of this environment is dangerous. The Ledger keynotethis French leader in physical keys to secure your wallet and digital assets, was eagerly awaited.
Several big announcements have been made, from the launch of their marketplace, but also of their crypto card, to their education program (nice idea than the learn-play-earn), as well as a stronger emphasis on their support solution for brands. A very good example to follow in terms of pedagogy for companies entering the world of NFTs.
3. Usefulness first
“The next phase is utility and real-world experiences. »
Ivan Soto Wright – Co-founder of Moonpay
Speculation is still present, but we feel an obvious change with the arrival of recognized brands: the ambition to “flip”, therefore to sell quickly to make a profit, is less present when we are certain of having an advantage. tangible and real to being a member of an NFT community. And brand experiencesor even physical products, are obvious benefits that brands can take advantage of, in order to consolidate a solid and committed community over the long term.
Many discussions have thus addressed this question of usefulness and this bridge with the real world: retail, virtual commerce, brand experiences, partnerships and co-creation… Fundamentals that we have always claimed on our side, but whose he echo is becoming more and more omnipresent.
4. Web2.5: the solution?
” Buying an NFT should be as easy as buying your favorite pair of sneakers online. »
What if the key to onboarding new users was to take the best of both worlds? This is what Raakhee Miller, CEO of Mojito, by evoking this idea of web2.5, allowing an easier experience thanks to identifiers linked to an e-mail, or a purchase by classic credit card, while being hosted on the blockchain and a wallet. Several actors are working on this overlay allowing simplified access, even if it means sacrificing somewhat the initial ideal of decentralization.
Moonpay, hitherto known for enabling the implementation of credit card payment, has announced its service named Hypermint, simplifying the creation of large collections (up to 100 million NFTs at once). Fox Corporation and Universal Pictures are already customers of the company. And it is far from being the only major player working on this kind of solution.
5. Values for value
“You cannot engage with communities if you don’t have values. »
Several speakers returned to the spirit that animates the world of NFTs. There is a real change in the way of approaching the community, and putting forward the web3 ethos seemed important to many.
It is fundamentally about finding a way to give back power to its community, by providing the keys so that its members become themselves creators of value. And it is this virtuous circle that is interesting to explore. We go from a model User generated content to user-owned content but this new balance also rewards the brands enabling this change.
As Ian Feiner says of Freckle interactive: “The future of advertising is giving ownership of the data, gamifying attention and rewarding participation. »
6. Tool Wars
“We need to focus on building the infrastructure. »
Ivan Soto Wright
In parallel with the conferences, many start-ups came to present their solutions. And if some stand out from the crowd, many of the tools offered have often similar functions: specific wallets, payment in classic currency, new generation CRM…
For brands, the question of use then arises: to fit into the codes of the industry by offering a “classic” experience, even if it means frightening novices, or to take the gamble of democratization but through tools that are still not widely used. widespread?
The real question will rather be to see which ones will survive this complicated year, in particular by succeeding in attracting large companies capable of supporting their growth. And to guide the uses of the entire sector.
7. Metaverse again and again
“Metaverse is a buzz word, but it will come. »
Sébastien Badault, VP metaverse at Ledger.
For brands, the metaverse remains an essential element in their vision of web3. Where blockchain maximalists seem less interested, the immersive and experiential use promised by this future world resonates in the majority of speeches by industrial players. This is what Olivier Moingeon, co-founder of Exclusible reminds us, who reminds us that the metaverse is nothing new, it is always a question for brands of ” Enriched creativity, protection of your IP and experiences”.
In a talk organized by Ledger, we could also sense certain differences in vision depending on the sector. For Nelly Mensah (Head of Web3 and Metaverse at LMVH), the metaverse is indeed an extension of what brands can offer their customers, from awareness to sales, through experience or retail. Facing her, Kai Henry, CSO of FaZe Clan, unsurprisingly defends a vision inspired by his gaming universe, where the metaverse would be an iteration of gamification. The Sandbox, between the two, tries to bridge the gap to reconcile these two worlds.
And even if we think that nothing is incompatible, what is certain is that many players are working to build the metaverse as it suits them, even if it means imposing their choice.
8. The AR Spectrum
“AR is the next consumer facing frontier. »
Many are claiming it: augmented reality promises to be a vector of massive adoption in several sectors. One of the first concerned is obviously virtual fashion.
Stefano Rosso, CEO of OTB Group, shares with Enara Nazarova and others the belief that augmented reality glasses will allow everyone to embody their virtual identity on a daily basis. The use cases are still thin, but the trend is well established and the technology more and more mature. This battle between AR and VR reflects the clash of the giants of the market, and two opposing visions of the metaverse, although complementary. And the NFTs are the components allowing, thanks to the possession of its assets, to be unique, and therefore to control its digital identity.
9. Dynamic technology
“NFT are just container, they can hold but they should also response. »
We are finally starting to hear about it: dynamic NFTs. While we believe they can indeed reinvent the experiences offered, several speakers spoke of the value of scalable technology. Gaming could offer characters that grow in power, depending on the time spent playing, digital fashion is a huge creative playground, and other players are thinking about more concrete usessuch as NFTs linked to bitcoin price quotes, so the value and appearance changes in increments.
These are only the beginnings of what is possible to develop, because for brands, we are convinced that the customer relationship can be transformed and individualized via these processes, but also that a dynamic NFT can offer a fun and interactive and stand out from the usual projects.
10. web3 brands
In parallel with all these theoretical considerations, very concrete festivities took place: those of the largest NFT communities. From Bored Apes to Azuki via Doodles and World of Women, all competed in creativity to offer a unique moment to their members. The Ape Fest was the place to be, World of Women offered a Madonna show at its party, Doodles unfolded its universe through playful installations to mint his NFT, Azuki continued his storytelling in a place in his image…There is no doubt that brands born in web3 have a considerable lead in creating experiences and strong community moments, and that is not about to stop when we see the latest productions pushing questions of ownership intellectual, as Eminem and Snoop Dogg’s latest music video. And the traditional brands that will succeed will no doubt do so by tying the necessary partnerships with these ubiquitous collections and unrivaled strike force.
Conclusion: We are still early
This sentence, repeated many times, is indeed very true.
The figures are telling: there are only 40 million monthly active wallets in the world. And yet, it is more than a basic trend: 41% of cryptocurrency owners made their first purchase in 2021.
This is also what makes the interest of this environment: a real facility to meet people, to exchange and collaborate, as well as a mixing of very different personalities and a sincere excitement at the idea of creating these new cultures together. . Because in parallel with the conferences, NFT.NYC is obviously also the moment of meeting of all these communities, finally reunited physically after having shared so much virtually.
And if all these discussions allow us to have a real inventory, our concerns often join those of other “builders”, who regret the lack of imagination and innovation. FOMO forces you to produce quickly, but not necessarily well. And it is precisely in this field that we know that brands can arrive in force: by not forgetting the fundamentals of communication. Storytelling and ideas, with real care given to production, here is the recipe for standing out in the current landscape.
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The 10 key trends of NFT.NYC
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