Using NFC Smart Tags to Link Physical Products to NFTs
Encrypted NFC Smart Tags & NFTs
NFC tags can link PHYSICAL items to a digital representation i.e. NFTs
NFC tags can be 1. static and 2. encrypted dynamic authenticators (encrypted smart tags)
This encryption is similar to that of a bank card or passport, protecting the tag from easy duplication
NFC offers a convenient and engaging method of accessing a product’s information and authenticating it, for example by simply using a smartphone or device with an NFC-reader.
No app needed (newer generation smartphones)
No light needed
Encryption offers higher security for authentication and more exclusive content
NFTs add a layer of verifiable ownership and history to a physical item
History of movement
And more… price history etc.
Put simply: the NFC is the physical certificate, and the NFT is the digital certificate for the same item.
NFC Tags can also be placed at physical spaces for attendees to scan, to give access to special digital assets.
This makes the experience more interactive and can be used in interesting ways.
For example, scanning a concept item or preview item to place the NFT representation it in a customer’s wallet or pre-order shopping cart.
Or unlocking an NFT, digital experience such an immersive metaverse, or any other digital content that further informs or promotes the item, strengthening a customers relationship with the item.
NFT & NFC Examples
Byredo is a luxury perfume brand
Collectors will be able to create their own customized scents using digital ingredients that will then be minted as an NFT
Each NFT will be used to produce a limited edition physical perfume
Each bottle will have an NFC tag that verifies authenticity and connect to the NFT
This physical-digital connection will also allow each consumer to access a metaverse-wearable
“I liked the idea of dissecting it down to raw materials. A single scent is incapable of representing this virtual world, so we formulated a lexicon of elements that collectors can combine at will to make something entirely unique” (Ben Gorham, Founder of Byredo)
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Aeir is a luxury fragrance brand using bio-engineered formulations, extraction-free materials (clean technology) and circular materials.
Purchasers will have access to a Web3 subscription ‘experience’ called “Aeir ID”
Aerie ID will have “Tap to Collect” using NFC will allow customers to collect items, such as product codes, collectibles or discounts in their Apple wallet
Aeir views merging of physical experience and NFC-enabled DTC experience a ‘customizable Concierge’
Aeir’s fragrances will have refillable cases ($180 retail price, $120 for refills)
“It’s almost like a shiny pack of cards you get to unlock… We imagine a future where the values of luxury are translated into a circular ecosystem—from brand experience and high-quality products, to the approach to service, minimal aesthetics, and its community… We’ve kind of taken a lot of the philosophy of Web3 but kind of baked it into a platform that’s very easy to use, and doesn’t have those high learning curves that are often associated with Web3” (Rodrigo Caula, Co-Founder of Aeir)
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Ciaté London make PETA certified, cruelty free makeup and nail polish, aiming to become vegan end of 2022
Ciaté London collaborated with A-list celebrity Christine Quinn and Quinn’s favourite NYC street artist 1Penemy to create limited edition NFTs
The NFTs were animated and aimed to showcase the innovations around the heat-transforming lip cream and eyeshadow palettes
Each design was limited to a maximum of 10 editions, with a design featuring signatures from Quinn and 1Penemy a one-off piece.
Verified carbon-offsetting was in partnership with Aerial.is and this is described in the NFT metadata.
“It was a perfect opportunity to offer a collectable piece of our collection for several reasons: some of our product formulas in the collection (such as Thermo Flip) are so innovative, never seen before and transformative that it was a great opportunity to showcase them in a visual way… we are now seeing a deeper investment and movement into the metaverse … growing year to year. We are also exploring how we can help democratize NFTs and make them more accessible to everyone by incorporating them into our loyalty scheme.” (Nora Zukauskaite, Marketing Director at Ciaté)
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Zara recently launched their metaverse-orientated Y2K Creatures as a phygital collection playing on the idea of “cutting-edge fashion and fantasy”
The collection consists of 10 physical pieces, plus digital accessories only available via a metaverse experience
Digital wearables include nail styles, haircuts and an interactive photobooth
Users can use the photobooth to customize different outfits with the Y2K collection, and then share screenshots on social media
Sharing their looks enters them into a competition to win prizes
Via its own Snapchat channel, customers can experience the collection with augmented-reality (AR)
Many designs were designed and created digital-first, then made into physical items
“This method of creation emphasises the fact that now, more than ever, the digital and physical universes are interconnected and reinforce each other.” (Zara press release)
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Armani Beauty’s new refillable scent “Armani Code” has its own metaverse game experience “Rewrite the Code”
The experience is a collection of time-trial mini-games, each themed around an ingredient of the fragrance
The metaverse environment re-uses elements of their advertising campaign where the world is happening in reverse and needs to be fixed by unlocking the Armani Code fragrance
After unlocking the codes from each mini-game, the players can eventually unlock the Armani Code fragrance in-game to “harness its magnetic power to put the world forward again”
Selected countries in Europe will have gamer live-streams on Youtube, Tiktok and Twitch
One user-generated Twitch stream already has 40k plus views in 24h
“Gaming is a new, very natural world to express the new Armani Code … young, urban, modern … and [gives] the opportunity to tap into the Gen Z gamers. This is also a way to reshape the rules of engagement with gamers as a core target, enriching the narrative around our new fragrance with a unique and immersive experience,” (Véronique Gautier, Global President of Armani Beauty)
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Plastiks is an NFT marketplace where all NFTs are backed by a Plastic Recovery Guarantee (PRG)
Runs on the eco-friendly Celo blockchain
Users can support plastic removal projects directly, or via artist-created NFTs that have PRGs
The NFTs allow easy tracking of impact
Helps companies meet their SDG goals such as plastic neutrality
Plastiks claims PRGs offer more transparency than opaque plastic credits and ensures plastics are reused or recycled, rather than landfilled
“Plastiks NFTs allow our clients to directly contribute to the global fight against plastic waste and improve the lives of the people on the ground. I am immensely proud that Hotel Lancaster is able to bring these groups together through this fantastic project.” (Lyderick Jadaud, GM of Hotel Lancaster Paris)
“By combining blockchain, specifically non-fungible tokens and recycling, we are able to be the bridge between plastic producers and plastic recyclers, making plastic production more traceable while incentivizing companies to recycle more… we will be the solution to the need to create more transparency within supply chains. All plastic produced should be tracked, recovered, and properly recycled” (Andre Vanyi-Robin, CEO & Founder of Plastiks)
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Virtual-first clothing platform that prioritizes collaborations with female artists on its designs.
Their mission is to reduce the need for physical items of clothing via AR/AI-enabled digital clothing that look like physically worn items in photographs
They claim that each item of digital wear produces 97% less CO2 and saves 3300 liters of water compared to an equivalent physical garment
Partnered with fashion game-app MOD4 to release a digital-only collection allowing players to dress up avatars and their own photographs in 3D garments and buy items online
1% of all revenue from sales are given to the No More Plastic Foundation
“At DRESSX we see the future of fashion in its digitalization, blurring the line between physical and digital realms, and creating the Metaverse full of creative possibilities for the new fashion talents.” (Daria Shapovalova & Natalia Modevona, Co-founders of DRESSX)
“Don't shop less, shop digital fashion.”
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Uses AI and 3D AR to allow virtual real-time try-ons of beauty products
Supported devices include smartphones, in-store booths, webcam
Supported platforms include Google Search, Youtube, Snapchat, Instagram, WeChat
Products include: virtual makeup, nail polish, jewelry, and hair color
Virtual try-ons result in up to 3x on conversion rates
The technology reduces waste and environmental impact by replacing plastic testers and reducing product returns
“We pioneer sustainable, Metaverse-ready, AI and AR-powered beauty and fashion tech solutions that empower brands to enrich their relationships with customers.” (Alice Chang, CEO & Founder of Perfect Corp)
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Women in the Metaverse and Web3
See figure right from the “What Women Want in Web3” report by The Female Quotient (The FQ)
This topic remains an issue due to the overwhelming male-dominated industry (only 16% of web3 creators are women)
Women need to be on-boarded into the metaverse and web3 and be encouraged and supported to actively build and guide its development
“85% of purchase decisions are made by women, so if brands want to get this right they need to design experiences that are relevant for women… If women can design these spaces for women, then we can ensure that women will want to spend more time in the Metaverse” (Shelley Zalis, CEO of The FQ)
Loyalty in the Metaverse and Web3
Loyalty programs are next to frictionless in Web3 thanks to the transparency of public blockchains in particular, and the significant reduction of many supply chain issues
NFTs representing discount vouchers, tickets to events, etc. can be sent for literally cents and arrive within seconds to minutes.
This can make giveaways and special offers during live events for example extremely interactive and exciting for a brand’s community
Different loyalty models are being experimented with to take advantage of these advantages, with RTFKT/Nike one of the most successful examples
The key is to add value for fans and the community at each step to keep momentum going
First in, best dressed, but don’t forget to add entry points for latecomers
NFT/NFC enabled loyalty programs add value for consumers and increase the reward for true fans of a brand, while bringing brands much closer to their consumer communities, hence the term direct-to-community
The metaverse provides an immersive and interactive experiential layer that adds further value to NFT/NFC items while also adding gamification and social aspects.
Exploring these technologies for consumer community building and collaboration creates stronger loyalty, partly via a greater sense of ownership and belonging
Younger generations have a surprising uptake in digital collectibles, virtual wear and metaverse experiences
“For most brands at a certain scale, it’s pretty hard to offset increasing customer acquisition costs. The best way to do that is by increasing the lifetime value of their user base and harnessing loyalty. Because of blockchain technology, NFTs create a way for brands to incentivize their users to not only rank up to a new level in their program, but actually appreciate the value of the asset that they own and can later be resold on [NFT] marketplaces. [Brands] can also take a royalty or percentage from each resell transaction as users continue to fast-track their loyalty status, which inevitably will just make them more aligned with that brand.” (Matt Smolin)
“The real question is what brands will do with them to make customers feel appreciated and to keep themselves top of mind, and that’s why there are NFTs for a cause. It’s like a badge of honor… So if Amy is buying certain types of moisturizer, we can give her authentic offers and experiences – maybe an exclusive experience with a favorite makeup artist. Because she holds an NFT, she might be one of only 50 people who can do that.” (Dan Jurek)