All the signs were there. There were reports of a velvet-rope pixeled, primate yacht party in Brooklyn. Next, Justin Bieber and his celebrity friends hit the late-night television circuit to showcase their newly acquired digital collectibles. And then came the ultimate market peak headline, “Madonna Reveals Fully Nude NFTs – and a 3D Model of Her Vagina.” In hindsight, the recent crypto-correction was inevitable.
Although a painful episode for many, the cleansing of mal-investment from the landscape is a necessity at this point. I am confident, however, that entrepreneurs will lean into this bear market to craft the next leg of the industry’s evolution. As organizations embrace the new innovations in NFT (non-fungible token) utility, I expect Web3 technology to emerge on a stronger foundation and with a higher purpose.
Much of the early excitement surrounding NFT use-cases focused solely on creating wealth. Speculation was rampant and the wealth creation fleeting. Creators and collectors alike were amassing crypto fortunes overnight. Angel investors and venture capitalists, motivated by FOMO (the “fear of missing out”), took financial stakes in just about any startup with a concept and a pitch deck.
Going forward, the true promise of NFTs will not depend solely on creating wealth but, more importantly, will rely on creating value. Value will be defined by an organization’s ability to build upon an ecosystem of like-minded members to advance a common mission. This paradigm shift is particularly interesting to nonprofits whose business models depend on creating content, as they can now effectively use all the power of their intellectual property to help expand their reach and build donor support.
While the monetization of intellectual property through NFT collectibles is proving to be a valid tool for philanthropy, the incremental value lies in the potential for collectors to build connections within a community. Mission-driven NFTs bring together owners with a purpose. These owners become stakeholders in the organization’s pursuit of a common goal.
NFTs have evolved beyond the one-off money grabs for content creators. The potential is far broader and deeper than that, and it is growing beyond what we imagined it could be. NFTs are unique because the ongoing potential for revenue is ultimately generated through the development of deep and sustainable relationships with supporters.
Organizations will need to change their thinking. It will be essential to consider the strength and sentiment of the community and the perceived ongoing benefits of belonging to the community. A valuable nugget that we can take from the initial NFT bull-run is that loyalty is a powerful force within a mission-focused group.
Through the use of NFT utility functions, organizations now have the means to create deeper and longer-lasting bonds with supporters and reach new audiences. Utility functions such as unique experiences and loyalty rewards can be funded by monies raised through NFT auctions. Creative use of incentives, which are embedded in NFT smart contracts, will foster stronger member loyalty and drive networking effects within the community and beyond. Enticing members to interact, learn, and share ideas is the foundation of the next iteration of philanthropic use-cases.
VoEx is dedicated to improving the human condition through the promotion of individual liberty and free markets. We’ve created an NFT marketplace that provides the tools for nonproﬁt institutions to build community, deepen relationships with supporters, and monetize intellectual property.
VoEx will soon begin launching NFT projects with the goal of expanding the impact of its nonprofit partners. As an innovative tool for sharing ideas and building community, NFTs will emerge from this current crypto recession with a nobler purpose and greater worth.