“Rebrand” by Ian Foley
This cartoon illustrates how NFTs are quickly evolving to new use cases, but they still feel like a hammer looking for nails.
NFTs reached peak bubble territory in 2021 when trading spiked 21,000% to more than $17 billion and a collage by the digital artist Beeple sold for a record $69 million at a Christie’s auction. But, by late September last year, NFT trading volume was down 97% and celebrities like Jimmy Fallon, Shonda Rhimes, Travis Barker, and Meek Mill have quietly quit their NFT avatars.
As NFTs are rebranded as ‘digital collectibles’, many businesses are starting to think that there are more relevant use cases for these tokens. One use case is that NFTs can become useful for customer loyalty programmes since permanently stored NFTs on the blockchain can become an effective global CRM of which wallet (read ‘consumer’) interacted with which brand.
As Simon Taylor, head of strategy and content at regtech Sardine, remarks: “Imagine if you could see everyone who bought Nike shoes in the past year? In Web3 with digital shoes, you can. And if you’re a brand that loves Nike customers or a retailer, you might have options to engage or retain those customers.”
While this might appeal to brands that have tried to find workarounds to anti-ad tracking systems, consumers are going to be more circumspect.
You can find more of Ian’s cartoons here.