How NFTs Could Evolve For Brands — Now That Marketers Know What They Actually Are - Digiday

How NFTs Could Evolve For Brands — Now That Marketers Know What They Actually Are – Digiday

For the most part, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have been a bust for the marketing and media worlds, mostly the terrain of crypto buffs who invested a lot of coin in seemingly similar-looking pieces of virtual art.

That era, or what Tyler Moebius calls NFT 1.0 is rapidly coming to an end, as the 2.0 era empowers marketers and their agencies to use the Web3 technology as next-generation loyalty and data gathering tools. Plenty of examples have already popped up in recent months.

Moebius is the founder and CEO of a company called SmartMedia Technologies, a five-year-old firm with about 100 employees that plays in exactly the Web3 space, fusing ad tech with blockchain-based tech. He’s been around since the early days of the Internet, having been part of the launch team at aQuantive (remember that name?), one of the first agencies to pursue putting advertising on the web. Along the way, he also founded tech-based Adconion (which became Amobee).

The following conversation has been edited for space and clarity. 

Where are you at in the process of building NFTs, and who are some of your clients?

We’ve spent the last five years building an enterprise Web3 platform that’s purpose built for agencies, brands, and creators, with the intention of making Web3 easy. Not only for brands and agencies to be able to leverage Web3, but we’re really making it easy for the end user. 

We provide a two-tap custodial wallet, so that anybody with a smartphone can have their first Web3 wallet, be able to acquire their first NFT, and then be able to actually start to use that in terms of either digital coupons, or a loyalty token that you picked up by visiting a retail store. We have a partnership with Accenture, we have partnership with Unilever. We just did an activation for Vodafone across Europe, where they acquired 250,000 wallets. And we’re over 6 million wallets on the platform at this point.

How difficult is it to get brands to engage in this form of marketing? Is there a lot of education you still need to conduct? 

Marketers have spent the last two decades gaining consent from consumers to be able to send an email to their inbox. Now they’re seeing this as a new CRM channel. They’re seeing Web3 as a new