17 Oct 22 – My Next Step In NFT
On bear markets, storytelling, and the exciting opportunities in NFTs
It has been a month since ETH shifted to POS.
In this month, just over 10,000 ETH has been added to the ETH supply instead of the over 300,000 new ETH added had we stayed on the POW chain. However, this does not yet makes ETH deflationary. That is to say, supply has been increasing at a much slower rate but it has not decreased.
There was however one instance when ETH became deflationary for a couple of days. This was with the roll out of XEN token, and the increased in ETH activity from people claiming and locking up XEN burned ETH. During those couple of days, more ETH was burned in the process than ETH was minted during the day. While it's not a wow or unexpected moment, the episode hints at how ETH can become deflationary should we see an uptake in on-chain activity, especially during a bull market.
Overall, I'm bullish on ETH long-term for as long as majority of the on-chain activities continue to happen on ETH.
Growth Of The NFT Space
In my past year in the NFT space, I've been obsessed with two things:
NFT as a product – Finding and discovering innovative use cases of NFTs, whether it's used for membership passes, art, authentication etc
NFT education – Trying to make the concept of NFT more easily understood and hence improving adoption broadly
For the latter, there are tons of resources and content being put out there, which is incredible really. It's not about one person cornering the education market, but rather as a whole, with everyone evangelising NFTs and Web3, the rate of take up will only accelerate from here. I'm particularly excited about the free NFT programme being put up by UNIC Open Metaverse, as well as Alchemy's free Web3 development classes.
As with most newcomers who are just starting to figure out NFTs, I was very happy to discover the many novel use cases of NFTs as a product. I was also constantly thinking about how it can be applied to new industries, new sectors, and they will benefit with the integration of NFTs.
Having said that, it has also reached a point where NFTs are a dime and a dozen these days (at least for those of us who are deep into the space), and it makes me wonder what makes a particular NFT project stand out? The trends (also called Metas) come and pass, and they move really fast. Anime meta? That was so January. Land meta? Staking meta? Done, dusted. Free mint Meta, as kickstarted by Goblins? People are bored already.
During these past couple of months, two projects stood out for me – Renga and q00t.
Renga was interesting because it started with a mint of TAOS (The Art Of Seasons), which really was just beautiful artwork by DirtyRobots, many of which were fungible. Nevertheless, he gradually teased through a daily comic that he is dropping more than just artwork, and that holders of TAOS will be airdropped something in future.
While he built up to that airdrop, which came many months later, he released a comic each day. This brought the community down into the lore, and it is the best way of building an organic community that truly enjoys what you are building. The story culminated in a boy discovering these black boxes, which were then airdropped to holders, who can unbox them to reveal characters that will fall into the next part of the story.
In storytelling, there is the hook, the conflict, the engagement, and promises of a sequel that makes people stay.
It also flips the book on how NFTs should be sold. Instead of selling characters to raise X amount of ETH, and use that X amount of ETH to produce a comic/story/animation, this is dropping the story upfront, and then airdropping the boxes later (a portion of boxes were also put up for public sale). Let's not forget how the gacha is a gamified experience that can be monetised effectively – better yet that it ties into the plot.
I really enjoy the content that 0xQuit has been putting up on Twitter, and running his own programme to teach more people on how to read smart contracts. As an education provider with his own community, he could have easily just dropped a membership pass that promises future utility to whatever he was building – similar to Zen Academy. However, he innovated his drop with q00tants and q00tnicorns.
With the drop, he pit his students into two factions, and tied in different quests for them to challenge one another, therein enhancing the learning experience. That was genius because it's not just another NFT drop, but it was purposeful and ties back to his original goal of education.
Storytelling And NFT
The two drops were inspiring because I was running these Intro To NFT classes in real life, and was thinking of an NFT drop. But yet, I do not want to just drop another collection of NFTs that adds to the open sea of garbage, pun intended. In fact, if I were to drop a collection, I will make sure that storytelling is the core of the drop. What do I mean?
Imagine going to Disneyland and shopping at the merchandise store thereafter. You might buy something that helps you remember this awesome day you've experienced, or perhaps a toy of your favourite cartoon. The point is, the collectible you choose to buy already has meaning to you.
In a similar way, I believe that utility tied to the NFT should be a given. However, instead of just dropping NFT as a product, it will be a lot more purposeful if you can develop a story that binds holders to the product. That is to say, perhaps the Story should be the main product, and NFTs are the by-products.
With that said, I believe that will be where I'll be headed on my NFT journey next.
I don't know exactly what I'll be dropping but these are the two main areas I'm focusing on:
NFT Education + Storytelling: Whilst NFT education is good for personal consumption and general onboarding, Storytelling is the one that I believe will be more relevant for businesses looking to integrate NFT into their mix. Therein, I hope to grow my experience and expertise and help more businesses integrate NFTs. I'll still be doing a lot of NFT Education, especially for teams who are very new to the concept, but I hope to tie in more than just that.
Storytelling Experience Integrated With NFTs: Starting with a bespoke jewellery company, we will be developing a story with the goal of awareness and education. NFTs will be integrated and collected through that experience. I hope to use this as a springboard to bring even more brands into the NFT space.
This will also be my last Insight update on this blog as I transit into We're Early. I'll be reorganising the new site to make it more aligned with my greater goal of NFT Education and Storytelling. In the past 10 months, this blog has reached over 4,000 new users, with around 75% from organic search traffic. While this is not a crazy number, my goal was never a growth game but to just put out knowledge and benefit even just one more person. So I appreciate if you've spent time reading up some of my mind farts, and hope you've taken something away.
Thank you! See you on the new site!