There’s widespread public confusion around much of what the crypto industry does and is hoping to achieve, but it’s likely there’s no facet of the space that has attracted as much negative attention as nonfungible tokens. From environmental concerns about the tokens’ carbon footprint to the “you don’t really own anything” disdain of so-called “right clickers,” the NFT truly seems to be a love-it-or-hate-it product.
Convincing the doubters that NFTs are more than just status symbols or high-risk, high-adrenaline investments will take a blend of education and a commitment to tap into the technology’s demonstrable utility. Below, seven members of Cointelegraph Innovation Circle share strategies to combat the mainstream stigma surrounding the NFT space.
Prove true utility
Many NFT collectibles are not providing any utility beyond collectibility and are making money based on speculation. Not all NFT innovations need to be net-new creations; they could just prove that there’s a new way to deliver or unlock value for intellectual property, rights holders, creators and so on. – Chris Ghent, NEAR Foundation
Stop relying on hype
A lot of NFT projects are struggling because they don’t have a sustainable business model other than creating hype and hoping to get more sales from the secondary market and royalties. But in most cases in this bear market, this does not work anymore. Only the companies and projects that continuously deliver real value to the holders will survive and continue to grow. – Cindy Jin, Mintology
Be ready with real, current utility
Leading with utility is always the best — and not a “this is what we plan to do” type of utility, but a real-life, currently existing utility. Unless you are backed by notable names, the days of launching with just a roadmap are over and will be met with an eye roll. – Ty Smith, Coinbound
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Consider a ‘rebrand’
NFT companies should focus on utility. Most of the recent NFT coverage has been misguided and relied on fear of missing out to build hype. It’s our responsibility to show that NFTs go far beyond a collectible JPEG. Another option is retiring the term “NFT” altogether. We’re seeing increased usage of the terms “digital collectibles” and “digital memberships” for products that are technically NFTs; these terms don’t come with the semantic stigma. – Sheraz Ahmed, STORM Partners
Stress company values in NFT initiatives and partnerships
By including “companies” in the question, it’s already a different question than it was in 2021. Companies will consider quality and reputation; they’re playing a long game. The NFT initiatives a company chooses will be more in line with the company brand, values and business, all of which will help legitimize what they do. The one thing they can do is choose partner platforms with shared values and goals. – Stephanie So, Geeq
Highlight the practical benefits for users
One strategy would be to keep the focus on creating real-world use cases and applications for NFTs that demonstrate their value and utility. By highlighting the practical benefits of NFTs, companies and projects can help educate the public about the technology. For example, developing a blockchain-based NFT ticketing platform could eliminate black markets while ensuring fair prices for ticket purchasers. – Vinita Rathi, Systango
Focus on solutions
The best way for NFT companies to move the narrative forward is by focusing on solutions. NFTs are already being applied to solve problems in diverse areas, including disaster relief, brand loyalty, ticketing and more. Projects that stay zeroed in on their end goals will be the most successful. – Molly Glennon, Ditto
This article was published through Cointelegraph Innovation Circle, a vetted organization of senior executives and experts in the blockchain technology industry who are building the future through the power of connections, collaboration and thought leadership. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of Cointelegraph.
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