CES is in full(ish) swing, and this edition will likely be the last before the metaverse transforms how one of the largest live events will be organized over the coming years. Yes, everyone still wants to gather together in-person – we’re only human, after all. But, as this year’s smaller-scale CES has shown, not everyone is comfortable with that scenario, both on the exhibiting and attendance side of the coin. And the opportunity that the metaverse presents to event organisers, exhibitors and visitors alike is just too tantalizing to ignore. 

This could be a moment of metamorphosis for a lot of events and the hope (or assumption) is that CES and its exhibitors will lead the charge. There are so many integration opportunities – everything from crypto currencies, to blockchains, Defi, NFTs and yes, even the metaverse itself.

As a company keeping up with the proverbial Joneses, where do you start? Does your brand know how to mint? What are gas fees? Are we basing our strategy on the Ethereum blockchain, Solana, or polygon? More importantly, what aspects of Web3 are right for your brand to leverage? And what aren’t? The right agency can help guide you to discover what makes sense for you. In the meantime, consider the use of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) for your company to dip into the next gen Web3 world. 

How NFT can work in a live event

Despite what most people think, NFTs aren’t just pictures, they are a smart contract and proof of ownership of a digital or tangible item, which can be an attendee badge or an admission ticket.

Commonly, physical badges are printed and picked up by attendees as they enter an exhibit. The badges are supplied by one vendor or another and then trashed by attendees after an event. With NFTs, a badge or ticket could be purchased digitally around the world, and the ‘proof of purchase’ is written into a permanent blockchain. 

This ‘proof of purchase’ means that your attendees will have literally left their mark on your event forever and have something tangible in perpetuity to show for their participation. NFT-based ticketing and badging is also eco-friendly and can save on event staffing costs.

Branding and sponsorship in NFTs

Now, sometimes, those same badges and tickets are prime assets for branding opportunities and sponsorships, which helps alleviate the cost of the event from the host. The hesitation to get rid of these is understandable. Fortunately, NFTs can be designed and branded any way you’d like. They can be further marketed or ‘hyped’ and, most importantly, still paid for by sponsors. NFTs can even be gamified and tied back into the metaverse, unlocking access to new cool experiences, or a carved-out space in the virtual event. For example, imagine if your VIP attendees can buy their viewing suite in the virtual world and ‘build it out’ themselves (choosing color themes, furniture, and decorations) for future events to come.

NFTs and the metaverse are here to stay

While this may seem like a gimmick, or something that can blow over, we promise you those not on board will end up playing catch up. Companies like Niantic just raised $300M at a $9B valuation to build a bridge between the real world and the metaverse. The whole metaverse space is poised to surpass $1 trillion. The need for verifiable, safe, and easily distributable badging and ticketing, especially those that can’t be counterfeited, will lead the way for NFTs to be your next step into next-gen. 

If this is your direction and you want to dive deeper into the rabbit hole, we are here to be your guides and help you design an event that not only leverages but exemplifies technology that sets you apart. As your trusted agency, DesignScene will not only help you ideate on usage and plan out execution, but also see it through to fruition. You want the future; we live in it.

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