Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are an art form. Similar to Marcel Duchamp, whose work was considered very bold and questionable and opened up the debate of “what is art”, history is repeating itself as NFTs drum up the same controversies.
Why Agencies Need to Embrace NFTs
Anything can be an NFT. For creative, social, tech, and PR agencies, NFTs simply represent a potential new service offering to clients because of these agencies’ existing capabilities – creating an NFT for a client would be no different than crafting a collectible character, designing limited edition packaging, or architecting collaborations between two brands. The question doesn’t lie with execution because the creation of NFTs is well within the design and development realm of any advertising agency with a creative team; it’s whether the digital art will render brands’ desired value for it. Like the art markets, the value of an NFT is simply how much someone is willing to pay for it.
Humphrey Ho, Managing Director of Hylink Digital US, believes that NFTs represent a rare opportunity for agencies to become a revenue source instead of just a cost center for clients. “NFTs are a reverse opportunity. Generating NFTs as part of a campaign which can become collectible or desirable actually generates a revenue line item for our clients. This would be revolutionary for ad agencies to add revenue directly through a design product that they create,” says Ho.
How Can Agencies Make the Most Out of NFTs?
Agencies need to take on the role of the educator. Let’s face it – NFTs are confusing. Many clients won’t understand what an NFT is, so it will be the agencies’ responsibility to share successful case studies with them and bring them on board on how they will benefit from investing in the NFT art form. The agency role then morphs into that of the accountable partner, to execute whatever the client will then need. This is how creative agency One Legged Pigeon approaches new forms of content creation or technological advancement for clients, acting as a consultant to offer creative education and direction.
When NFTs are designed by an advertising agency for clients, they present structured and collectible assets because they come with agencies’ user insights and experience in generating demand, unlike NFTs on the free market. Like anything limited or rare, NFTs serve to elevate the aura of any brand amongst the younger Gen Z demographic that tomorrow might be able to afford the actual thing. However, agencies will also need to warn clients of the risks that exist with NFTs – namely, copycats or runaway evaluations of their products.
NFTs are an opportunity for both agencies and clients to build a presence in this new world of art and content creation.