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September 27, 2022
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 min read

How to launch an NFT collection: Common Mistakes

To help you on your journey into the NFT space, we’ll look into four of the most common mistakes made by NFT projects, and how you can avoid them.

How to launch an NFT collection: Common Mistakes

NFTs exploded last year, reaching peak sales of $12.6 billion in January before settling down to $1 billion in June. While many critics proclaim the NFT bubble has burst, more and more brands and artists are onboarding NFT business models and leveraging the technology to create new ways of engaging their users, incentivizing loyalty, and generating new revenue streams. 

What’s clear, however, is that the NFT landscape has dramatically shifted, and relying on NFT hype alone will not sell out your collection. Now, it’s more crucial than ever to carefully plan out your go-to-market strategy and launch a meaningful NFT collection that creates real value for your users. It’s also essential that you facilitate a smooth user onboarding experience and carefully consider the legal implications of what you are selling. As the NFT space has evolved, so has the complexity of the budding industry around it, and new projects looking to launch in the space would be wise to learn from the trial and error of the thousands of NFT projects that have come before.

To help you on your journey into the NFT space, we’ll look into four of the most common mistakes made by NFT projects, and how you can avoid them.

Don’t assume the word “NFT” will sell out your collection.

In the early days of the NFT boom, the mere mention of the term “NFT” was enough to sell whatever digital art you could crank out. As a result, many overpriced and overvalued collections sold out quickly, leaving users with useless and eventually worthless tokens in their wallets.

High-profile examples include Jack Dorsey’s first tweet, which sold for  $2.9 million, and upon resale didn’t receive any bids above $14 thousand. So what’s the problem here? The original price of this NFT was purely based on speculation and hype. It was overvalued and subsequently dramatically underdelivered as an investment. With no real utility and questionable inherent value, the buyer was left with an unredeemable asset that put a hole in his pocketbook.

When launching your collection, it’s imperative to understand that a collection of doodles of cats will, in all likelihood, not sell out on its own anymore. Most users no longer want NFTs for the sake of owning NFTs, and you’ll have to deliver a truly meaningful and useful product to attract a substantial community of buyers.

Which brings us to the next point…

Don’t underestimate NFT utility.

Since NFTs these days are less and less about the metadata (images, audio, video, etc.)  they represent, and more and more about what users can do with them, how you will make your NFTs useful is one of the most important considerations when launching your project.

This should not be an afterthought, whereby creators frivolously attach insignificant perks to their collection just to be able to slap the term “utility” onto their launch site. The utility of your collection needs to be one of the core factors of its design. Whether this involves a complex staking or incentivization system, or more straightforward value through limited membership to real-world events or clubs (e.g. the Flyfish Club, an exclusive NYC private dining club that uses NFTs to give members access), the design of the metadata associated with your collection should only be considered after you have carefully thought through what your users will be able to do with their NFTs.

Some other great examples of truly useful NFT collections include Gary Vee’s Veefriends and CloneX by RTFKT.

Don’t think your users are all web3 natives.

Along your journey into launching your collection, you’ve probably learned quite a bit about NFTs, the underlying technologies, and how to obtain and use crypto to buy and sell them.

Don’t assume your users have the same level of knowledge as you do.

In our very much fiat-based modern world, the majority of your potential audience may not have any web3 experience whatsoever. That doesn’t mean they aren’t interested or can’t be easily onboarded. It simply means you’re going to have to take steps to ensure their experience with purchasing and using your NFTs is as smooth and straightforward as possible. If they can purchase NFTs through a fiat payment gateway and use them without diving too deep into the intricacies of web3, they’ll be just as active and loyal as any web3 native you can find.

Here are some ideas for how to streamline their experience:

  1. Implement a fiat payment gateway: There are many options available, the main idea is simply to allow your users to buy your NFTs with their credit/debit cards or other online fiat payment medium of choice. Removing the friction of learning to use a crypto wallet and obtaining crypto to pay for minting can make your collection appealing to a much wider audience of users.
  2. Consider custodial wallets: If you implement a fiat payment gateway, your users will still need some kind of blockchain wallet to hold their NFTs. This brings us back to the previous friction point, as many of them might not know how to do that. Of course, setting up a MetaMask wallet is fairly simple, but you can simplify their experience even further by creating custodial wallets for them. A custodial wallet means that they don’t hold their passphrase or private keys. You, as the collection provider, create wallets for them and hold their private keys, allowing them to login using their credentials to view and interact with their NFTs through your platform.
  3. Avoid web3 jargon: While much of the web3 community derives pleasure from throwing around cryptic buzzwords all day every day, newbies to the space are often deterred by the onslaught of jargon. In presenting your project to the world, try to make the language as accessible and straightforward as possible to the widest possible audience. The less people you confuse in explaining why your collection is amazing, the more likely it is to be successful, and the higher the opportunity for reaching new users.

Don’t put off sorting out the legal side of things.

Pop quiz: when someone purchases an NFT from your collection, what intellectual property rights are automatically transferred to them?

Take your time, Google it, and then read on.

All done trying to figure it out? As you can see, it’s not that simple. The NFT space is still very much a legal “Wild West,” and the frameworks for intellectual property law haven’t even been created yet. 

The good news is, many high profile cases are already in process and will establish legal precedents in the coming years. In fact, top legal minds are already at work establishing frameworks (e.g. the Harvard Blockchain Task Force, of which Artiffine is a founding member).

The bad news is, for the average NFT creator or brand, the intellectual property side of NFTs is still nearly impossible to navigate. This doesn’t mean you should simply ignore it. If you leave the legal side of things to deal with later, it could very easily come back to bite you.

The takeaway here is, you need to look into the legal implications of selling NFTs BEFORE you launch your collection, and you should strongly consider consulting with experts in the field before you do. Do your own research, don’t assume anything, and reach out for help if you can’t find the answers you need. Artiffine’s legal team is always available for consultation, so keep it in mind in the lead up to your launch (you can always reach us at legal@artiffine.com).

Artiffine can help.

We hope this has given you some ideas for how to approach launching your NFT collection and what to avoid. While some of the points above are more general and easily implemented, some aspects can be a bit more technical and/or nuanced if you’re new to the space.

If you need help designing your project, sorting out the legal side of things, implementing NFT utility functionality, fiat gateways, custodial wallets, or adjusting your language to efficiently target the widest audience possible, our team is fully available to help with any or all it. We’re a group of solution architects, devs, legal heavyweights, content creation specialists, and graphic designers who are passionate about NFTs and web3. If you’d like some assistance with your project, reach out, and we’ll get on the job ASAP.

Share your NFT vision and get a quote.

How to launch an NFT collection: Common Mistakes

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