NFT Release Dates
The day of the launch of a new collection, either in the form of NFT drops or enabling tokens bought during a pre-sale to be minted is a day of particular excitement, and for many projects is both the culmination of an effectively executed marketing and community development plan, as well as the start of a lengthy and fulfilling roadmap.
For most projects, the release date is neither the beginning of the journey nor far from the end, and because of this, many different projects take a range of approaches when it comes to choosing a release date and all of the hype generation before, during and after this minting date.
With that in mind, here is a brief primer on how to set a release date, what you need to do beforehand to set your project on the road to success, and the importance of continuing that good work in the future.
The Vital Force Of Hype
One of the most vital elements of any NFT that wants to remain near or above its mint price in the medium term is a consistent level of interest in the project, as without that interest the demand reduces and with that the sale price.
In the early parts of the NFT mania, the format itself was the hype machine. With individual NFT artworks selling for astronomical figures, the hype came from being an early adopter of a new technology that had already generated interest.
So little else was needed that stealth drops would still be very successful. However, with the NFT market having matured and buyers expecting more from the tokens they buy, project developers need to take the lead in how they promote the tokens and get the most out of it.
The good news is that a lot of organic promotion will be undertaken by your community, and the first step once your white paper, roadmap, assets and website are developed is to set up an open community that people can join and spread the link to that will bring together like-minded individuals.
By far the most popular of these is Discord, and the number of successful NFT projects that did not have some form of discord community can be counted on a single hand.
Once set up, it forms the basis of your community and can be used to deliver announcements, discuss what people want from your project and turn your release date into a big community event to celebrate with like-minded people.
Alongside this, it is important to have a presence on social media, although if you are unable to afford a social media manager it is best to pick a platform you know best (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or TikTok) and dedicate your content to that rather than try to make one-size-fits-all content that does not truly reach out to any one community.
As well as this, if you do not have the resources to set up a website, at least set up a Linktree or similar page with all of your social media resources on it.
Content Is King
Once you have a base of operations for your community to help generate organic hype, the next step is to build up a marketing campaign, and the best way to do this is with a combination of effective, high-quality content and the clever use of like-minded social media influencers.
In 1996, during the very earliest days of the internet as we know it, Microsoft’s founder Bill Gates wrote a highly influential essay known as Content Is King.
Whilst some of the predictions made ultimately never happened (pay-per-page microtransactions ultimately never took off), the most important and relevant section states that content is where the real money is made on the internet.
Not only is this the case for content in and of itself as a product to consume, but also the importance of content in bringing people towards your website and by extension your NFTs.
Exactly how to use content to sell your tokens will depend on your project’s specific goals and targets, but for NFT collections effective content marketing is essential for creating a brand narrative that will make a token collection more than the sum of its parts.
For example, the Bored Ape Yacht Club, to use a very popular example, is built around a narrative of these weird, rich expressive apes hanging out in a yacht club bathroom and doodling graffiti together.
It is a strange narrative concept, but internally consistent and that in itself provided value and turned the apes into the precise type of bizarre status symbol that the design was intended to encapsulate.
Blogs and podcasts are typically the best way to get the word out about an NFT project, as well as partnering with like-minded influencers who will help to inform their audience about a project that they are interested in and by extension a project their audience might want to be part of.
Making Your Launch Day An Event
Building up a launch day event is all about producing enough hype for your NFTs as the time draws closer to the mint.
Giveaways are a great way to do this, particularly if they involve the community and reward those that interact heavily, spread the word and produce engaging and high-quality fan content.
The most successful projects are those that know that the promotion and success of an NFT cannot just be gauged by its launch but by its continued value after this, and the best way to ensure this success is to continue to be active with your community, as well as follow and refine your roadmap.
This typically involves providing added value to NFT holders, with the most notable example outside of BAYC being VeeFriends.
The Gary Vaynerchuk-led NFT project is not highly desired based on the strength of its art, which has a distinctively childish style, but instead, they are desired due to providing a level of access to the financial guru himself and serving as the ticket to exclusive events such as VeeCon.