Most of us are still learning what exactly NFTs are and how they work. Basically, they’re like any other collectible, just digital. The market dictates that it has value, whether it’s a tangible object or not. Plenty of baseball cards, for example, are worth much more than the paper they’re printed on. The same goes for NFTs. There’s just no paper.
Up this point, NFTs have generated headlines for their absurd value, with many being one-of-a-kind “objects” that people are paying top dollar for. That’s true in some cases, but not always.
“Space Jam: A New Legacy” is going the opposite route in its marketing partnership with newly launched NFT site Niftys. Folks who register can receive one of 91,000 NFTs minted specifically for this event. Think of it like a T-shirt you get on MLB Opening Day or, as Richard Lawler from The Verge cleverly puts it, “more of a breakfast cereal prize giveaway vibe than a hunt for a golden ticket.”
The NFTs look like any other trading card that you’d get as part of a promotional tie-in, with “Space Jam” characters like Bugs Bunny in their Tune Squad uniforms. It’s just that this one is made for the age of NFTs, rather than on the inside of a Snack Pack or something.
Launching today: Nifty’s 🚀
The “first social NFT platform” has raised $10 million in a new round of funding.
In partnership with Warner Bros., they’re giving away 91,000 NFTs from Space Jam: A New Legacy. pic.twitter.com/ASvvvOE1ro
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) July 12, 2021
The role of NFTs within the traditional promotional marketing space is still sort of murky. They’re collectibles, and the approach to co-branding is similar on the surface, but they don’t get printed and they don’t take up space on warehouse shelves. You can’t leave an event with one in your hand.
It could be that NFTs have a place in promo as complements to an in-person item. Maybe you make a bunch of real trading cards with a code to unlock an NFT version, too. That’s sort of in line with what the Dodgers just did with World Series rings. And these NFTs are just one component of the “Space Jam” marketing and merchandising blitz.
It’s possible NFTs will be a passing fad. There’s no way of knowing whether they will still have value in the future. But things like Pokemon cards and other “fad” collectibles are still going strong, and social media isn’t going away any time soon. As technology moves, having things online becomes less niche and more mainstream.
And for right now, when something like “Space Jam” (which was created almost for the sole purpose of merchandising revenue) is using NFTs, the trend is worth watching to see how it might fit into your promotional products offering in some way.
As this particular promotion demonstrates, it’s a good way to drive engagement the same way you can get traffic by promising a giveaway at the door for the first X number of people to show up. You just don’t even need a physical space, and there’s no distribution involved.
Not every NFT has to be the Hope Diamond or a Honus Wagner card. It can just be Bugs Bunny spinning a basketball, and there can be tens of thousands of copies.