For the uninitiated, NFTs, or Non-Fungible Tokens, function as a digital record that tracks ownership of various digital assets, usually digital artworks. Recorded on blockchain ledgers, NFTs provides holders with a publicly verifiable and immutable proof of ownership. Think of it as a digitally secured evidence of provenance.
The NBA was one of first major institutions to jump in on NFT craze, with its wildly successful NBA Top Shot NFTs launching in 2020 and generating over 230 million USD worth of sales in 2021. Soon after, old-money art auction institutions like Christies and Sotheby’s began turning towards NFT sales of artworks, with internet artist beeple selling an NFT for 69 million USD through a Christies auction.
The 41 billion USD market valuation of the NFT market in 2021 has now brought it in close running with the global art market, valued at 50 billion USD. Even if we take the conservative estimate valuing the NFT market at 22 billion USD according to Dapp Radar, compared to its 200 million USD valuation in 2020, the explosive growth of the NFT market is still staggering in scale.
While NFTs have gained widespread media attention in the English-speaking world, NFTs have also started to make their mark on various emerging markets in the rest of world as well. For example, breakout NFT-based game Axie Infinity, developed by Vietnam-based gaming studio Sky Mavis, has seen widespread adoption in the Philippines, where 40% of its player base resides.
In 2022, NFTs are still on the upward rise in adoption and popularity. With so much focus on this new technology, the NFT market will move quick in 2022. As with the rest of blockchain-related industries, translations and localization for NFT projects require a deep level of technical understanding and a close watch on new developments to ensure translation accuracy.
HI-COM understands the various intricacies involved with translation and localization for blockchain-related industries. As a certified translation agency operating in China specialized for digital marketing, we are experts at helping projects reach audiences from around the world.
NFT Marketing Strategies for 2022
As a new concept and technology, NFT marketing requires shifting away from tried-and-true marketing strategies of traditional industries.
Currently, the major NFT projects that have hit the market are art NFTs, digital assets serving as collectibles, and game NFTs, digital assets that can be used in games. The largest platform for NFT sales is openseas.io.
The NFT market is made up of an extremely online community compared to traditional industries. While diverse, the NFT community also has its own established set of in-group communication styles and terminology. Understanding your target audience and being part of their community is the key for creating a successful NFT marketing strategy.
For NFTs, the most important aspect for converting fans into buyers is hype. The more a project is talked about, the more people trust their investment in the project’s NFT will turn a profit and therefore make a purchase.
As such, NFT marketing relies heavily, more so than any other industry, on building a strong community to spread the word about your project.
KOL Marketing for NFTs
As with targeting any specific consumer segment in the current marketing paradigm, KOLs are an important tool for building brand awareness, community trust, and hype for the project.
As the spokesperson for your brand, they should be trusted blockchain experts plugged into the NFT market, with deep understanding of the mindset of their local community of NFT enthusiasts.
Whitelist marketing is a marketing strategy specific to NFT projects, different from traditional influencer whitelisting.
NFT whitelist marketing grew out of high fees on the Ethereum blockchain, the most popular blockchain for NFT projects, for “minting”, or creating, NFTs on top of the actual price of buying an NFT. Whitelisting provides confirmed buyers their own slot of time to mint their NFTs, allowing for low minting fees.
As a marketing strategy, handing out whitelist slots to members of the community for participating in community building has proved wildly successful for building hype and community engagement. Read more here.
NFT Communities on Twitter, Discord, and Telegram
NFT aficionados commonly congregate on three main platforms: Twitter, Discord, Telegram.
With Twitter being the first major platform to allow for setting your NFTs as your account’s profile picture, having a Twitter presence is an obvious choice for reaching the NFT community.
While Twitter is a ubiquitous platform for traditional marketing, Discord and Telegram are more niche platforms typically used by the more tech savvy among us. Understanding how to build communities with each platform’s specific tools, such as bots, are a prerequisite for launching a successful NFT project.
Localization and Translation of NFT Marketing Materials
The magic of digital assets is that they are not limited by physical distance and borders. What they are limited by however, is language and localization.
Building a multilingual website will easily expand the reach of your NFT project to an international audience. With NFTs being a global phenomenon, localizing and translating your website is an important step in increasing ROI and project reach.
HI-COM’s translation and localization professionals have extensive experience in ensuring every language offered on your website is clear and concise, localized for each target market. We understand that for readers, the professionalism displayed on your website is a reflection of your project’s credibility. In addition, we specialize in multi-language SEO optimization for websites, helping your audiences find their way to you no matter what language they speak.
Social Media Campaigns
The most important part of any NFT project is its social media campaign. Building a strong and vibrant community across Twitter, Telegram, and Discord will be the goal of any NFT social media campaign.
By appealing to NFT communities across the world, you’ll increase the likelihood of strong NFT sales. Social media localizations will make people from other regions around the world feel welcome and heard when they participate in your project’s community. Most major NFT projects have dedicated channels within their Discord and Telegram groups for non-English communities.
As digital marketing and localization experts, HI-COM’s extensive experience can help you design the perfect multilingual social media NFT campaign. Utilizing region specific strategies for each localization will allow your communities across the world feel like you are as invested in them as they are in your project, increasing buyer confidence.
Localization of NFT Games
The explosive rise of Axie Infinity last year ushered in a wave of NFT games, providing a clear use-case for NFTs beyond collection. The game provided a proof-of-concept for the play-to-earn model, with the game’s large Filipino userbase able to earn a living playing the game during the country’s pandemic lockdown.
Since then, established game studios such as Ubisoft and Zynga, among others have jumped in on the trend, developing their own NFT games.
As with traditional gaming, NFT games also require localization to expand to global audiences. HI-COM mature game localization services and our network of experienced translation and localization professionals can help localize a wide variety of games for various markets globally.
NFTs seek to provide proof of digital ownership without needing to rely on legal documentation. However, a recently hotly debated aspect of NFTs that cross into legal territory is copyright – the right to reproduce the image of the NFT one owns.
These legal documents are outlined in the terms and services of NFT projects. Some projects offer no ownership of the NFT IPs, some offering complete ownership, and other with limited rights to copyright such as Bored Apes Yacht Club.
As a certified legal translation agency, HI-COM offers professional worry-free legal translation services. Our network of professional legal translators from around the world follow stringent protocols for data security and privacy, guaranteeing both quality of services and protection from data leakage.
Media Kits/Press Releases
The success of an NFT project depends on how much buzz it can generate before its sale. With a strong media kit, projects can attract the attention of the various blockchain and NFT focused media platforms around the world. Localizing and translating your media kit for key markets will help bring stronger visibility amongst NFT communities in other regions around the globe.
As a one-stop service for digital marketing, HI-COM has an experienced team of localization experts and translators with extensive experience in copy creation and localization for press releases.
Whitepaper translation and localization for NFT projects will apply more for utility NFT projects such as gaming NFTs where tokenization is concerned. Read more on HI-COM’s tips for white paper translation here.
Samples of NFT gaming whitepapers:
What Languages Should You Target for Your NFT Projects in 2022?
HI-COM has ranked the top languages to translate your NFT project documents to in 2022:
Thailand has a thriving scene for art NFTs that has reached mainstream visibility. In 2021, Miss Universe Thailand competition famously incorporated NFTs in the beauty pageant. Coral, an NFT marketplace for Thai enthusiasts, was also launched last year.
Towards the end of 2021, the Thai government new regulations surrounding NFT sales. While these regulations have decelerated the growth of NFTs in Thailand, the new regulatory oversight also has provided increased investor confidence in the industry.
With the launch of Thailand Digital Arts Festival 2022, Thailand is set to become the host of Asia’s largest digital art showcase. With the participation of government officials in its press conference, it signals Thailand as a fertile market for NFT market growth.
With the success of Axie Infinity, created by Vietnamese studio Sky Mavis, Vietnam has also secured its spot on the list of emerging NFT hotspots. Vietnam already had a thriving community of blockchain enthusiasts during the blockchain ICO boom and today, Vietnam is quickly developing a mature NFT market for both art and gaming NFTs.
The Philippines has consistently ranked among the top countries for NFT ownership and adoption rates. The massive success of Axie Infinity, an NFT-based game, in the country has created a thriving local NFT community.
As one of the country’s two official languages, alongside English, localization in Tagalog will help your project gain traction in the emerging Filipino NFT market, especially for NFT gaming projects.
In 2021, Malaysia saw major growth in NFT visibility within its borders. This included the launch of Crypto Art Week, NFT marketplace Pentas, and huge volumes of NFT sales amongst NFT artists.
Similar to other countries in the region, coronavirus restrictions created prime conditions for a thriving community of NFT artists and enthusiasts to take roots. Malay translation and localization will not only help target the Malaysian market but also increase coverage in Singapore, where Malay is one of the official languages alongside Chinese, English, and Tamil.
The Spanish-speaking market is a fast-growing segment of the NFT market. Spanish artist Edgar Plans’s Lil’ Heroes NFT collection has also recently risen to the leaderboard on openseas.io. Various new initiatives have also been launched last year to take advantage of the growing market in Latin America.
With the ability to cover both Spain and Latin America, NFT documentation translation to Spanish will provide your project with a strong ROI.
The United Arab Emirates is poised to become a global hub for not only cryptocurrency but also NFTs. As major economies such as China and America impose stringent regulations on cryptocurrency, major platforms such as Binance are flocking to the Gulf State nation for its favorable policies.
With Arabic translation and localization, NFT projects can target the burgeoning local UAE NFT communities and other Arabic speaking countries around the world.
China’s Emerging NFT Market
While China has invested heavily into blockchain technology, cryptocurrencies are officially banned. Because of this, NFTs are referred to as “digital collectibles” as opposed to “tokens” in the Chinese NFT market.
Much like with China’s official stance on other blockchain related technology, NFTs are embraced, albeit with conditions attached. China’s largest internet companies, such as Alibaba and Tencent, as well as state-owned companies, such as Xinhua, have launched their own NFT offerings, bringing the technology to the forefront of mainstream discourse on digital assets.
What’s the catch? NFTs on the global market are traded with cryptocurrencies on public chains such as Ethereum. However, Chinese NFTs are traded on the state-backed BSN, or Blockchain Services Network, a private chain hosting China’s digital yuan. This key difference means that Chinese NFTs will not be interoperable with the NFT infrastructure used globally.
Even with these limitations, interest in NFTs in China ranks as the highest out of any region in the world, according to a 2021 study. With its own NFT infrastructure and government backing and massive investor interest, the Chinese market is set to become a major hotspot for NFT development in the coming years.
In other Chinese-speaking jurisdictions, NFT popularity has also boomed alongside the global NFT craze. In early 2022, Mandopop icon Jay Chou recently launched his own line of NFTs, Phanta Bears, with a current valuation of 53 million USD. Hong Kong has seen a massive influx of advertising for NFT projects and the launch of a Hong Kong based NFT exchange platform. These recent developments points to Chinese-language translation and localization as becoming crucial for even public-chain NFT projects.
With the increasing globalization of the NFT craze, investing in localization and translation will be an essential element for successful NFT marketing campaigns. With HI-COM’s expertise in localizing content across digital ecosystems, we can help make your NFT marketing campaign global.