How to Add Value and Utility to NFT Art

Troy Warren for CNT #NFT

In a world full of art, art alone is not rare. While NFT collectors often buy based on the art alone, adding a little extra to your NFT will help your work stand out among the sea of NFTs on the market.

What do NFT collectors look for?

When you sell an NFT, you’re selling to an audience that is very different from the traditional market. While many people still buy based on art alone, a large portion of the market is made up of collectors and investors – people who are looking for something that is worth collecting, and will appreciate in value somehow. Many are also looking for a better way to engage with creators through their NFT purchase, especially if the creator’s works are also available on the traditional market.

The most popular NFT projects today have a strong focus on utility, because many collectors look for the extra value and opportunities for engagement that it provides. As an independent artist, how can you provide this kind of value and utility for your NFT buyers?

Add Unlockable Content

Unlockable content is additional content that can only be accessed by the buyer of your NFT. You can think of unlockable content like bonus content e.g. when you buy a DVD as compared to when you stream it, you get bonus content like director’s commentary or bonus scenes, all in one neat package.

There are no limits to what you want your unlockable content to be, only the limitation of the platform you’re on. Most commonly, creators attach high-res images, full-length videos, or even links to off-chain files. Providing additional content is an easy way to add value to your NFT. Because unlockable content is only accessible by the first buyer, it provides an incentive to purchase.

If you don’t have the resources to make extra content for every NFT, you can simply add some different file formats into the unlockable file, such as a printable file format or a vector file for easy scaling. Artist’s sketches, a signed message, or a short video of how you created the piece are also good options that don’t require much more investment.

Add Value Over Time

NFTs provide proof of patronage. This means that you can always see who is holding your NFT at any given time, and distribute rewards to your supporters. Many creators reward the buyers of their first NFT collections by sending them free NFTs or merchandise later on. This, in turn, makes the NFT more valuable because buyers are receiving multiple products with a single purchase.

This model also helps strengthen the loyalty of your buyers, because they will feel like they are being rewarded for supporting your work. Community support and word-of-mouth can be a valuable driver of NFT sales, so creating goodwill by structuring your sale in a way that rewards your early supporters is a great way to strengthen your brand.

This is something that you will have to plan before you sell your NFT. Consider what additional content or products you’ll be giving your supporters later on, factor that into the price of your NFT, and tell your buyers what each purchase entitles them to in the long-term.

NFTs as an Access Pass

As an independent artist, you may not always have the resources to create new content or products for all your NFT holders. Instead, your NFT could double as a pass to access exclusive products, services, and experiences.

NFT holders could be given exclusive access to pre-sales of your future collections. The NFT could double as a ticket to your next show. You could offer your NFT holders lower rates on commissioned pieces, or even just access to an exclusive discord channel where they can talk to you directly.

You could even throw a party for your holders – there’s no limit to what you can offer. However, it’s important to understand your audience, and what may be valuable to them. For example, if your buyers are not in the same country, IRL events may not be useful so you might want to consider doing something in the metaverse instead.

Work Around Your Limitations

Offering your NFT holders new free content or merchandise can be a costly and time-consuming venture, but these aren’t the only ways to add value. Whatever your time constraints and budget are, there are ways you can provide extra value and utility for your holders. If you don’t have money, offer your time and attention. If you don’t have time, throw some money at it. And if you have neither, throwing a couple of different file formats and a signed letter in the unlockable content doesn’t cost much either. Who knows, if you become a famous artist one day, that signed letter might be worth more than you think.

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By Troy Warren

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