If you browse social media at all, you’ve likely seen the recent NFT craze that’s swept the world. You’ve heard the stories of these tokens selling for tens of thousands of dollars, and wondered “what in the world is going on and how do I get in on it?” After all, you’ve never even seen an NFT. What is it about this new token that’s causing such a commotion?
Not to worry; in this article, I’ll explain what an NFT is, the principles behind how they work, how they can generate profit, and how you can make one yourself!
Here’s everything you need to know about NFTs:
NFT: What is it and how does it work?
An NFT, or non-fungible token, is a digital asset created in much the same way as cryptocurrency. Transactions are authenticated using a specific blockchain network, and ownership of a specific NFT can be proven using those transaction records.
Fungible is a word that means transferable. Ergo, NFTs are not transferable, and can not be replaced or interchanged.
Key Features of NFT
- Digital Asset- NFT is a digital asset that represents a specific digital collectible. An example would be art, music, or a game. The blockchain the NFT is hosted on acts as a certificate of authenticity, as it can be used to prove ownership at any given time.
- Unique- Because NFTs are nonfungible, only one NFT of any given type can exist at one time. Once an NFT is created, that is the only one of that NFT that will ever exist. It can not be forged or recreated.
- Easy Exchange- NFT exchanges take place on cryptocurrency exchange sites because they are hosted using the same programming. This makes it easy to buy and sell NFTs.
How Does NFT Work?
NFTs are a little difficult to understand at first glance, so it would be easiest to compare them to something you already know about: art.
Let’s say that you want to buy an original painting by Salvador Dali. Maybe you think his style is unique, or perhaps you just like clocks. Whatever your reasoning, you make your purchase.
When you do, you are given a certificate of authenticity stating that you own the real Salvador Dali painting. No one can argue you have a fake.
You now own the only version of that painting that has or will ever exist. That makes it extremely valuable. And while you can later sell that painting to someone else, you can’t just paint another that looks exactly like it and sell it as the original. Ergo, it’s non-fungible.
Additionally, no one else can make something that looks exactly the same and sell it as the original either. This is because you own it, and only one of it will ever exist. You could have prints of the painting made and sell those, but they aren’t worth anywhere near as much as the original.
NFTs work in an extremely similar way. The thing that gives them all their value is their uniqueness.
NFT: What is it Used for?
People who enjoy crypto trading and those who like art are most often the ones using NFT. However, it does have some other uses:
- Digital Content- NFTs are most often used today to give content creators more control over their work. By using an authentication system to sell their digital content, they can bolster their profits and control content theft. Additionally, the original creator of an NFT earns a 10% commission every time that NFT is resold, which makes it an excellent form of passive income!
- Gaming Items- NFTs have also recently become popular in the gaming community because of their utility to players. Normally, online games have items you can buy (such as outfits or skins). Unfortunately, though, once you’re tired of those items you’re stuck with them.
By involving NFTs, players can use the items they purchase and then sell them once they’re finished. This helps balance player economy and gives everyone the opportunity to create styles that are unique to them.
- Investment and Collateral- Right now, DeFi (decentralized finance) applications allow you to borrow money (or crypto) using collateral. Usually, this comes in the form of physical possessions. However, NFT could be used in the future as an alternative form of collateral for these sites.
Why Are NFTs Becoming Popular?
Even with all this information, it doesn’t explain why, out of every online resource, the one to experience raging popularity is NFT. What is it that makes this content-based system so valuable?
Before we explain, it’s important to note that NFTs are not new. They’ve actually existed since 2015, but are only now experiencing a climb in popularity.
Perhaps the largest factor in this jump is the normalization and sensationalization of cryptocurrency. More people than ever understand how blockchain works, making it simpler to integrate NFT into everyday life than ever before.
To learn more about how and why cryptocurrency has become so popular, get started with our visual learning modules!
Beyond that, however, is the combination of fandom and investment potential that makes them so valuable to own. Consumers understand that NFTs create scarcity for digital content as it’s no longer able to be copied and pirated at will. This excites people like you and me who could potentially hold them as an investment while their value climbs.
How to Create an NFT
If you’re a content creator, then you’re missing out by not utilizing NFT. What is it that makes your content climb in value, after all, other than scarcity?
Luckily, creating NFTs to sell online isn’t as difficult as it seems. It can actually be broken down into 5 simple steps:
Step 1: Develop Your Concept
NFTs have the most value when they have a purpose. Therefore, the NFTs you create should reflect the purpose you’re trying to achieve.
Regardless of whether you have content to secure, a business to fund, or just want to get into the NFT industry while it’s still growing, make sure that you have a theme that ties your unique style together.
Step 2: Choose a Platform
You guessed it: the secret to creating an NFT is to use an NFT creation platform. Similar to how websites like Coinbase and Binance exist primarily to trade crypto, other websites exist just to help you create and sell NFT.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that the list of platforms you can use is small due to how short of a time NFT has been popular.
Here are some of the best platforms for NFT creation:
- OpenSea (2.5% creator sales fee)
- Holaplex (creator fees can fluctuate but are normally about $0.00025 per transaction)
- Rarible (creator fees vary but there is also a free minting option)
Step 3: Build a Community
Similar to selling art, your NFTs will succeed much more if you build a community to appreciate them. This will require significant digital marketing effort, but don’t worry about having to do anything too sophisticated. We recommend getting started using gamer networks like Reddit, Twitter, or Discord.
Step 4: Choose Your Strategy
Depending on your NFT goals, your NFT creation may look different from someone else’s. For example, someone who wants to launch as many projects as they can might want to adopt a resource like NFT Art Generator. However, if you’d rather just create a few meaningful pieces, you’d probably rather get to the drawing board and make the art yourself.
Step 5: Mint, List, and Share
The final step to the NFT creation process is to upload your art, finish the minting (creation) process that your chosen software prompts you to do, list your NFT, and share it with your community!
That’s really all there is to it!
All in all, NFT represents an excellent opportunity for digital creators and investors alike. And while it may seem complicated to create an NFT of your own, the entire process only takes as long as it takes you to create the content for it!
If you want to learn more about cryptocurrency or see some terms here you don’t understand, our beginner blog post (Cryptocurrency for beginners) is a great place to start. Alternatively, visit our crypto training modules if you’re curious about a specific topic!