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The Next Wave of NFTs Is Here: They’re Called Social NFTs

And this platform is set to dominate the space.

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Non-Fungible Tokens, or NFTs, are everywhere. Though they’ve been around since 2012, earlier this year a huge surge in demand sent the NFT market into space — along with its most prized items, sold for millions of dollars.

What began as an art-centric market is now evolving into many other areas, including the creator economy.

Social NFTs are the next big thing in the NFT space. Here’s why, and which project to watch out for.

Quick Recap: What Are NFTs?

Simply put, NFTs are digital assets you can buy and sell on a blockchain, the open ledger that records each and every transaction on a network. That’s how Paris Hilton defined them a few days ago on the Tonight Show.

Of course, there’s more to unpack.

First, blockchain technology hard-codes the ownership and provenance of NFTs. It’s like a permanent audit trail that can’t be tampered with: one peek into the blockchain is enough to tell frauds from original assets.

Second, NFTs empower creators to cap the supply of their artwork. Limited supply, such as one-of-one editions, are rarer and thus perceived as more valuable.

Third, through what’s called “smart contracts”, NFTs can unlock unique rewards for fans.

When Kings of Leon released the world’s first NFT album, fans received an animated album cover along with a physical, limited-edition vinyl upon purchase.

Finally, once the NFTs are sold out, an entire secondary market opens up where holders can sell their NFTs for profit. A fan who bought the Kings of Leon NFT album when it launched, can now pocket a decent profit by re-selling it on a marketplace like OpenSea.

When they do so, a percentage of royalty will go back to the band; and for every sale that ever happens after that.

NFTs align incentives between creators and supporters like never before — which is why it’s such a revolutionary concept that attracted the attention of brands and celebrities around the world.

“I see NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, as the future of the creator economy. They use blockchain technology to help creators increase the value of their work and share it with fans in real-time. And blockchain technology will allow artists to get paid on secondary sales as well. That’s never happened before and it is mindblowing how much that can change things [for creators].” — Paris Hilton

Recently, the demand and trading volumes for NFTs shot through the roof:

  • ️NFT marketplace Rarible raised another $14 million.
  • OpenSea processed $1.06 billion in NFT sales over the past month alone, a 76,240% growth compared to the same time last year. Recently, daily volumes surpassed their 2020 yearly total.
  • Shopify, one of the largest e-commerce companies in the world, announced it’ll allow merchants to sell NFTs right on their storefronts.

These numbers show a growing interest in NFTs.

And this isn’t limited to virtual art, either. There’s a lot of potential for creators to enter the NFT game too.

This is where the concept of social NFTs comes in.

Enter Social NFTs

Social NFTs are the new way for creators and fans to connect. Let me explain.

A social media influencer with a large audience might decide to turn their content into NFTs. Why would they do that?

Simple:

  • Monetize their existing content and reputation over and over again: a piece of content could be sold exclusively or in multiple editions, and the creator earns a royalty every time someone re-sells their NFTs.
  • Build deeper connections with fans and reward them in unique ways: for instance, when a fan purchases their NFT, they could have access to a monthly call, a private community, or discounts on the creator’s merchandise.

People love to collect items that are rare and valuable. NFTs, let your fans own your most iconic moments in exclusive or limited editions. And, on top of that, they can unlock extra benefits.

The combination of virality and scarcity is what makes social NFTs so attractive.

An influencer can choose to “mint” their most viral TikTok video. The fact the video is viral shows there’s demand for it.

The asset becomes extra rare once turned into an NFT: by the fact it’s viral (scarce content), and by virtue of its limited supply in NFT form (even scarcer).

NFTs takes assets that have been viewed millions of time and make them scarce by giving them a unique ID on the blockchain.

That’s rarer than rare. Social NFTs combine the scarcity of NFTs with the virality of social media. It’s like a match made in heaven.

Viral content + limited supply = hyper valuable assets

As a creator, you could select your most viewed, relevant, and iconic moments captured across social platforms. You could then let your fans buy and sell those exclusive NFTs, unlock unique rewards, and unleash the full power of NFTs.

Sounds good, right? But where do you even begin?

Getting Started With Social NFTs

Social NFTs are a brand new category within the NFT market.

As such, the huge existing platforms like OpenSea and Rarible aren’t suited for influencers and their fans.

They’re overwhelming and aren’t made for social content. Plus, they’re expensive: you have to pay “gas fees” just to list or sell an item because these platforms use the Ethereum blockchain.

Luckily, there’s an alternative to the chaos.

Enter Melon.ooo — the NFT platform for creators and fans.

What’s Melon, you ask?

  • A place to browse your favorite creators’ NFTs.
  • A marketplace to trade creator NFTs and redeem exclusive rewards.
  • The simplest way for creators and fans to enter the world of NFTs.

A place to browse your favorite creators’ NFTs

To start with, Melon makes it super easy to discover NFTs from top creators.

The site has a “Featured Creators” and “Featured NFT Items” section, so you can search for your favorite influencers or scan through what’s on offer:

You can also use the “Explore” feature to filter what type of social NFTs you’re looking for — such as Art, Fashion, or Gaming.

Or choose specific platforms like YouTube or TikTok, and you’ll see social content from these platforms in NFT form:

On top of that, each creator on Melon has their own custom collection page which they can easily share across socials. Every creator on Melon is personally onboarded; this ensures the content they choose to turn into NFTs is authentic and they have the rights to it.

Melon then takes a copy of that content, so that it lives on forever even if it’s removed from its original platform (or the platform itself shuts down as Vine did).

Likewise, fans have their own page where they can show off their NFT collection.

A marketplace to trade creator NFTs and redeem exclusive rewards

Once you see an NFT you like, you can purchase it right from the site with various cryptocurrencies at a very low fee (2.5% only) and, soon, with the $melon token (with 0 fees).

When you click on any NFT, you’ll see its unique details:

  • Description: what the NFT is about, and whether any exclusive benefits are attached to it.
  • Owner: shows the creator and current owner of the asset (so you can verify the original owner is indeed the influencer).
  • History: shows when the asset was first created and any changes in price.
  • Info: the unique asset ID and metadata (the string of code that authenticates each NFT).

Then, click “Buy” and connect your MetaMask wallet to purchase the item.

The simplest way for creators and fans to enter the world of NFTs

Melon is the simplest way to get involved with NFTs, hands down.

The interface is simple and the site is super easy to use. It’s built with influencers and their fans in mind; even those who are new to crypto.

Don’t believe me? Here’s how easy it is to mint your own NFTs on Melon:

Melon is set to become the “NBA Top Shot” of socials, hands down.

We can’t wait to see the platform go live over the coming month.

Closing Thoughts

NFTs will enable the next-level creator economy.

For the first time ever, both creators and fans can capture value by sharing unique digital assets.

Social NFTs will make iconic social media content rarer than ever, via exclusive and limited editions that can’t be replicated anywhere else. NFTs turn content that live on the Internet into super rare assets.

Yet the world of NFTs may seem complicated and overwhelming. Thankfully, a platform like Melon takes all the hassle out of the process.

Creators can now turn their top moments into NFTs their fans can collect and trade. Are you as excited as we are?

Projects

Sorare, a Fantasy Soccer NFT Platform, has Raised $680 Million in a Round Led by SoftBank

The $4.3 billion financing values the Paris-based NFT firm.
It follows a period of fast expansion for Sorare, which now has 600,000 active users.

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SoftBank led a $680 million Series B funding for Sorare, a soccer-focused NFT trading platform.

Since May of this year, there have been rumors about the investment. The transaction, which is now complete, values Sorare at $4.3 billion.

SoftBank, Atomico, Bessemer Ventures, D1 Capital, Eurazeo, IVP, and Liontree are making their first investments in the firm, with existing investors Benchmark, Accel, and Headline also participating.

Sorare is an Ethereum-based platform that allows fans to exchange NFT trading cards of great players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Antoine Griezmann. The Paris-based business, founded in 2018, has sold $150 million in cards so far this year.

Between the second quarter of 2020 and the second quarter of this year, the platform’s monthly active paying users increased 34 times, while quarterly sales increased 51 times. It already has 600,000 registered users and has licensed players from more than 180 soccer clubs, including Real Madrid, Liverpool, and Juventus.

The money will be used to help the platform expand into other fantasy sports, hire more employees, run marketing campaigns with partners and athletes, and create its first office in the United States.

Another fintech startup is backed by SoftBank

SoftBank has financed several fintech companies this year, mainly through its Vision Fund 2.

Revolut, a $33 billion neobank; DriveWealth, an infrastructure firm that supports fractionalized investing in U.S. stocks; OPay, a Nigerian payments firm; and Mercado Bitcoin, a Brazilian crypto exchange, through its Latin America Fund.

“Sorare sits at the confluence of two incredibly fascinating markets in digital collectibles and fantasy sports,” according to Marcelo Claure, CEO of SoftBank Group International and COO of SoftBank Group.

“It’s clear from Sorare’s phenomenal growth this year that football fans all around the world have been eagerly anticipating the ‘game within the game’ that Sorare provides,” he continued.

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Projects

Biggest NFT Marketplaces

We take a look at the marketplaces where you can buy and trade these unique digital art tokens as their popularity and price is exploding.

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NFTs had been around for a while, but in the year 2021, they became widely known.

The cryptographically unique tokens indicate a title of ownership over digital property such as art, music, or videos—but it was the digital art scene that sparked the NFT market, with record-breaking sales like Beeple’s $69 million Christie’s auction drawing headlines around the world.

Since then, fans have jumped on every new NFT craze, spending hundreds (and in some cases millions) of money on games like CryptoPunks, Bored Apes, and Loot.

But, you might wonder, where are these NFTs being purchased. NFT marketplaces have become like a vibrant virtual high street, selling digital art and collectibles at every price point imaginable. Here’s a rundown of some of the most popular platform.

1.OpenSea

OpenSea was the first and by far the largest peer-to-peer NFT marketplace. According to analytics platform DappRadar, it has a total trade volume of over $6.5 billion at the time of writing, allowing NFTs of anything from in-game items and collectibles to artwork, music, GIFs, and more.

Connecting your MetaMask wallet is the simplest way to sign up; however other wallets like Coinbase Wallet, Bitski, Formatic, and others are also supported.

After you’ve connected, purchasing an NFT is a straightforward process; you only need to browse through the various collections or search for something that catches your eye, then submit an offer and wait to see whether it’s approved.

It’s also simple to upload your NFT work. Go to the “Create” tab, connect your wallet as a creator, upload your NFT, complete the description, and wait for the millions to pour in.

2. Axie Marketplace

The second-largest NFT marketplace is hosted by the NFT-powered video game Axie Infinity, with a total trade volume of more than $2.1 billion on Dappradar. However, it only deals in Axies, adorable Pokémon-style digital pets that gamers can buy and sell on the Axie Marketplace.

You can also use the game’s built-in breeding mechanics to make new Axies, which you can then sell on the Marketplace. Unlike art NFTs, which are collected for the sake of collecting, Axie Infinity’s NFTs have a purpose: they may be used in-game to fight monsters and other players, earning tokens that can be used to create new species. Axie Infinity’s NFTs have proven so profitable that some players in the Philippines and Indonesia make a living breeding and trading them.

However, Axie Infinity is one of the most difficult NFT services to use for new users, and you’ll have to jump through a few hoops before you can even start playing the game.

You’ll need to set up a Ronin wallet, transfer ETH into Ronin, and acquire a minimum of three Axies from the Axie market in addition to an Ethereum wallet like MetaMask (which will set you back several hundred dollars). This isn’t ideal for casual passers-by, but it’s not beyond a seasoned crypto user’s capabilities.

3.CryptoPunks/Larva Labs

CryptoPunks is a series of 10,000 randomly generated characters with pixel art aesthetics and distinct traits that were one of the first demonstrations of NFTs on the Ethereum network. Unfortunately, while they were once available for free, the only way to obtain one today is to purchase one.

That involves going to the marketplace run by CryptoPunks founder Larva Labs, where most sales are made. And buying one is expensive: the cheapest Punk now costs 94.99 ETH (about $285,000), while the most valued one sold on the marketplace (number 3100) sold for an incredible $7.58 million. That explains Larva Labs’ $1.3 billion in all-time trading volume.

First, connect your MetaMask wallet, browse the available Punks (those with red backgrounds are for sale), and place your bid.

The most challenging aspect of the procedure is persuading yourself to spend such a large sum of money, but hey, that’s on you. After all, the worth of art is in the eyes of the viewer.

4.NBA Top Shot Marketplace

NBA Top Shot is a set of digital trading cards using NBA video highlight clips, and it was one of the first NFT series to find momentum with the general public. Clips are stored in your safe, encrypted blockchain-verified wallet when you purchase a pack, where you can view them or resell them on the NBA Top Shot Marketplace.

The popularity of NBA Top Shot can be attributed to the fact that its makers, Dapper Labs, have made it simple for the average user to get started. Linking your Google account to Dapper is the simplest method to sign up for NBA Top Shot, after which you’ll be asked to input your phone number for SMS authentication.

After that, you must complete a few account creation processes, including picking your favorite team. After that, you can join a drop on fresh packs, which will put you in a virtual queue before grabbing a bag. Then, following another SMS verification, you can pay using an existing crypto wallet, a Flow wallet, your Dapper money, or, more conveniently, a credit card.

5.Rarible

Rarible is a community-owned platform that offers a wide range of digital art and collectibles. It is one of the significant NFT marketplaces on Ethereum. Dappradar presently has the fifth-highest all-time trading volume, with $210 million changing hands.

You can buy and sell all kinds of material, just like on OpenSea. Sellers can also make many NFTs for a single image to sell it multiple times.

Users who have dabbled in comparable NFT marketplaces like OpenSea will feel right at home with Rarible’s user interface, which is easy enough for relative crypto newbies to utilize.

You can log in using MetaMask, Coinbase Wallet, MyEtherWallet, or any mobile wallet that supports WalletConnect. You can use funds in your wallet to buy, or you can top up your wallet with fiat cash by bank transfer or debit card once you’ve signed up.

6.SuperRare

Where Rarible’s design overwhelms you with a dizzying selection of flickering GIFs and live auctions, SuperRare’s UI is far more pared-back and straightforward.

It’s also a lot more curated, as it bills itself as a social network that promotes the development and collection of crypto art. In addition, it collaborates closely with artists, requiring work to be submitted and vetted before it can be listed; in other words, quality above quantity.

A compatible wallet, such as MetaMask or Formatic, is required to sign up for SuperRare. An additional step requires you to create a username and password linked to your wallet address, but it just takes a few seconds, so you’ll be browsing the platform’s exclusive NFTs in no time.

7.KnownOrigin

KnownOrigin, like SuperRare, promises to deliver a more curated, gallery-like experience for the discerning NFT enthusiast. Its all-time trade volume is under $6.9 million. All of its artwork files are stored on IPFS, which gives the underlying assets some protection. With a heavy focus on digital art, this marketplace avoids the wackier features of the NFT universe; therefore, no wacky avatars or charming monsters will be found here.

KnownOrigin is straightforward to use, at the risk of sounding like a broken record. Simply link your wallet, such as MetaMask or Formatic, and you’ll be bidding on your own desired NFT assets in no time.

8.Foundation

Foundation, which bills itself as a “creative playground” for artists, currently has a total trading volume of slightly over $79 million. The NFT of popular Internet meme Nyan Cat, Edward Snowden’s debut NFT, and an audiovisual digital collectible made by producer Richard D. James, better known as Aphex Twin, have occurred there.

Foundation’s marketplace is straightforward to use once you’ve connected your MetaMask or other software wallet with WalletConnect. You can put bids on timed auctions just like you would on a standard auction site.

9.MakersPlace

MakersPlace is another niche NFT marketplace that prides itself on having several exclusive digital fine art collections. Although its total volume is minimal ($23.5 million at the time of writing), it contains many one-of-a-kind items that add to its exclusivity.

MakersPlace is another niche NFT marketplace that prides itself on having several exclusive digital fine art collections. Although its total volume is minimal ($23.5 million at the time of writing), it contains many one-of-a-kind items that add to its exclusivity.

It’s simple to become a buyer on MakersPlace, and you can even save time by logging in with your Google or Facebook accounts.

As part of the registration procedure, you’ll have to choose five artists to follow, and you’ll be able to buy their creations with either your MetaMask ETH balance or (more conveniently) your credit card. Then, if you’re a creator, you’ll need to fill out an online form to request an invitation to join the platform, which the curators will review.

10.Nifty Gateway

One of the first waves of large NFT marketplaces, Nifty Gateway, has a significant supporter of cryptocurrency exchange Gemini, which purchased the site in 2019. Nifty Gateway made waves during the NFT boom by brokering the sale of Beeple’s CROSSROAD for $6.6 million in February 2021, which was one of the first multimillion-dollar NFT deals. By May, the platform’s gross sales value had surpassed $300 million.

The portal hosts artists such as The Weeknd, Grimes, and Eminem and delivers a tightly curated selection of NFT drops on a tri-weekly schedule. It also features a marketplace where you may look through curated collections, verified artists, and a more extensive selection of work from unconfirmed artists.

Because of Nifty Gateway’s close connection with Gemini, getting started is a reasonably straightforward process. To begin, you’ll need to create an account on the site (and use Stripe to authenticate your identity if you wish to sell NFTs). Next, you’ll need to fund your account, either with a credit card or by sending ETH to a deposit address. After that, you’re ready to purchase NFTs from the marketplace.

You can also link your Gemini exchange account to your Nifty Gateway account, allowing you to make purchases and withdrawals using your Gemini exchange account balance (your Gemini account can be topped up using bank transfer, wire transfer, crypto deposits, and trades).

11.BakerySwap

BakerySwap is a more miniature NFT marketplace than OpenSea, but that’s not surprising given that most NFT markets are built on Ethereum, while BakerySwap was one of the first to start on Binance Smart Chain (BSC). One site element is the NFT marketplace, which allows users to trade and swap liquidity assets directly.

The NFT marketplace is simple enough to use, requiring only a MetaMask connection. However, because this platform is based on the Binance Smart Chain, NFT assets can only be acquired with BNB rather than the more commonly used ETH.

12.Binance NFT Marketplace

Binance NFT marketplace is, as you might expect, an NFT platform provided by Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange. The company intends to create an NFT marketplace with exclusive offerings and collaborations to entice the exchange’s large user base to its platform.

If you already have a Binance account, you’ll be happy to know that it will operate with Binance NFT instantly. It’s as simple as bidding on any items that grab your eye after you’ve gotten in. Depending on what the producers have specified, you can use ETH, BNB, or BUSD.

13.Solanart

The most recent NFT mini-boom occurred on Solana, a blockchain that competes with Ethereum. On marketplaces like Solanart, collections like Degenerate Ape Academy, Aurory, and SolPunks have witnessed trading volumes of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Solanart, unlike OpenSea, is a selected collection of NFT collections, with a small selection of NFTs available for purchase.

To begin purchasing Solana NFTs on Solanart, you must first download a Solana wallet, such as Phantom or Solflare, and load it with Solana from your preferred exchange. Phantom has direct integration with the crypto exchange FTX, making depositing funds from that exchange a breeze.

It’s only a question of going to your preferred NFT, connecting your Solana wallet to the marketplace, and placing your bid from there.

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Projects

Rarestone Capital Makes a Strategic Investment in Rainicorn to Strengthen the Play-to-Earn NFT Farming Industry

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Rainicorn, a multifunctional platform that has established itself as a hub for innovation in the crossover between NFTs and DeFi, focusing on gamification, has received a direct strategic investment from Rarestone Capital, an active investment startup capital fund and accelerator.

The investment, which includes a direct purchase of Rainicorn’s native token (RAINI), is motivated by a shared desire to expand and enhance Rainicorn’s play-to-earn ecosystem in a community-centric manner. The contract includes hands-on marketing support under Rarestone Labs, the fund’s incubation arm, including community, social media, and viral marketing.

The popular play-to-earn trading card game The Lords of Light, which is presently completing its first public card pack drop thanks to significant community presales, is part of the Rainicorn ecosystem, termed the Rainiverse. Players can gather playable NFT cards and use them to build decks capable of decimating their opponents in turn-based combat in this competitive trading card game. The game also allows players to level up their cards and contains DeFi aspects such as the opportunity to stake high-level cards for passive income. Finally, players can acquire Photon, the game’s principal currency, by engaging in a range of strategic and competitive behaviors in-game.

“We are tremendously thrilled to develop a long-term partnership with Rainicorn. Even though the sector is still in its early stages, the top twelve play-to-earn games are currently processing approximately $1 billion in transactions. This cooperation is tremendously exciting for us, given the demand for Raini’s early releases and their team’s vision and execution ability.”- Charles Read, Rarestone Capital Co-Founder

“We envision our cooperation with Rarestone Capital as the game-changer that will push Raini to the next level,” says Rainicorn Co-Founder @Mindspheres. “The degree of assistance and contacts that Rarestone brings to the table are extremely beneficial to the Raini project and our goals.”

Rainicorn also has a cross-chain NFT platform, a launchpad, and a marketplace where participants may buy and sell NFTs. Raini’s mission is to build a broad and diverse interconnected ecosystem with a comprehensive roadmap of unique features and novel concepts to help drive the sector ahead, with staff across the globe, including Australian co-founders.

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