NFTs have emerged as the latest disruptor in the online marketplace, revolutionizing our traditional understanding of what it means to purchase goods online and how we value them. The ever-growing prominence of cryptocurrencies and development of blockchain technology has allowed NFTs to impact all facets of the entertainment industry with many wondering about its potential for iGaming Brands. Many are looking for NFTs to be explained, so let us take a quick look at what they are.What are NFTs?Backed by blockchain, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are unique digital items that you can own, buy, sell or trade via the online marketplace. The nature of what can be considered an NFT (otherwise known as a nifty) is broad, but most commonly refers to digital art, collectibles and virtual reality items in the form of an image, video or audio file. NFTs have caught headlines with digital trading cards, music albums, viral clips from pop-culture, and even signed tweets selling on auction for large sums.
While traditional physical assets, such as a rare baseball card, have been accepted as collectibles with value, there have been many attempts to create the same adoption and acceptance from the market for digital assets. The emergence of blockchain technology has accelerated this by providing protection that enables secure proof of ownership for NFTs. The rise of online marketplaces has also made the ability to buy, sell, trade and display NFTs readily accessible and is contributing to its widespread adoption.Why are they important? The intrigue surrounding this new technology, along with the backing from celebrities and online personalities, has contributed to its recent growth. In Q1 2021, the market cap for NFTs saw an increase of 1,785%, as reported by Forbes. In addition to revolutionizing the ability to purchase digital assets, the adoption of NFTs is expected to improve efforts against counterfeiting and copyright disputes, contribute to innovation for a decentralized economy and even as an innovative marketing tool for brands.How can brands leverage NFTsAs demand grows at a rapid pace for NFTs, operators worldwide are looking for new ways to utilize this technology to offer memorable experiences for players, improve their brand awareness and generate buzz. King Billy Casino serves as a prime example, becoming the first brand of its kind to offer unique NFT artwork as part of their The King Before the King collection available on the OpenSea marketplace.
In addition to offering their own NFTs, brands can utilize the popularity of existing NFT art pieces to present as special prizes for their fans. In the Daily Fantasy Sports space, DraftKings took advantage of this by purchasing and offering a much sought-after sports-themed NFT known as CryptoPunk #1871 to the winner of their Masters golf tournament contest.
These serve as just a few examples of the many possibilities available to answer the demand from the market. While the future of NFTs is a debate for many, as more operators take advantage of this booming trend, more innovation is expected to come as brands continue to find new ways to offer exceptional experiences for their users.