According to Deloitte, 88% of senior executives think that blockchain technology will eventually achieve mainstream adoption. Worldwide spending on blockchain solutions is forecast to top $17.9 billion by 2024 and will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 46.4%, according to data from IDC. With that said, we’re seeing a lot of hype around the evolution of Web3 and how Web 2.0 will be a distant memory.
So how do you sort the truth from the hype?
In this episode of CX Decoded, Travis Wright, devout follower of blockchain, NFTs and the intersection of Web3 and marketing and the co-host of the Bad Crypto podcast join Dom and Rich to spotlight the practical applications of blockchain and Web3 as well as, what marketers need to understand, as we get ready to usher in Web3.
Note: This transcript has been edited for space and clarity.
Rich Hein: I'm joined today by my co-host, Dom Nicastro, managing editor of CMSWire.
Dom Nicastro: Hey, Rich, what's going on? Good to be here with you again today, as always.
I'm just ready to get going. Let's just introduce our guests with our guest rapid fire, shall we?
Rich: Sure. Let's do it.
Dom: All right, so who do we have on here today Rich?
Rich: Today we have Travis Wright, who is a former marketing technologist and these days is a devout follower of blockchain and NFTs, and more specifically, the intersection of Web3 and marketing.
He's also the co-host of the Bad Crypto Podcast, which recently aired its 600th episode.
And he's also author of "Digital Sense.”
Dom: 600…we're catching up, Rich, what’ve we got, about 560 more to go? Something like that.
Rich: 563, yes, something like that, yeah.
Dom: All right, good. Well, this is another one for us today. So why do we have Travis on today?
Rich: Today, Travis is going to discuss the practical application of blockchain and Web3, as it relates to marketers. You and I talk about this all the time, we see a lot of hype around the evolution of Web3, how Web 2.0 will be a distant memory soon.
But when you actually start looking at numbers, you know, worldwide spending on blockchain solutions is forecasted to top $17. 9 million by 2024. And it's expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 46.4% CAGR. And that's according to IDC, that's, those aren't my numbers.
And today we'd like Travis to help us define the immediate and you know, the long-term impacts of Web3 as it relates to marketers.
Dom: Absolutely, a little background on me and Travis, so we got into a little bit of a fight back in 2014.
Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. Fists thrown and everything, no.
The MarTech Conference 2014, Travis was a keynote. He's done a lot of keynotes like that few from martech and it was in Boston, my home turf, and I know he's a KC guy and loves those Chiefs.
The fight he was causing was talking about the intersection of best-in-breed and all in one suite marketing technology and back in 2014, that was like red hot. People were getting upset at the keynote like that's not true. And I was reporting on a Travis was coming back to me with my article.
That's why I'm on with him because I love the tension. I absolutely love it.
Travis, what's going on my friend?
Travis Wright: What is up Dom? How's that nose? You doing all good, you recover from that?
Dom: Hey, you should see Travis though, I got a few rib shots in there.
Travis: So right, left, right, left, you toothless.
Dom: It's great to have you.
It's so good to have you. Yeah, it's topical. Obviously, Web3 marketing, Blockchain, NFT's are excited to get into that.
But hey, give our listeners a little heads up what's been going on lately in your professional world?
Travis: I would say this, you know, just as a background for people who may not know me, I typically, you know, pay attention to what's coming up, right, I pay attention to technology trends. I would identify myself as a futurist because I have seen where the space is heading, at least seven times in my career, and I get there first, and then I teach people about what's coming, is what I typically do.
And you know, this is this is no different this time, like, you know, we started Bad Crypto Podcast back in 2017, so we've been doing this thing now for quite a long time, almost five years actually. And as you mentioned, 600 episodes, but really we're closer to 700, because we have a bunch of additional episodes that we did.
And we were the very first podcast ever mentioned NFT's and non-fungible tokens back in 2017. We saw that 2020 was going to be the year of DeFi, which is decentralized finance. We knew that 2021 would most likely be the year of NFTs, and that we figure that this year is the year of Play-to-Earn and Game-Fi.
And as a lot of people are moving towards the Metaverse, that's probably still a couple years out before it's going to gain really big mainstream, until probably Apple releases their goggles of some sort.
And so just paying attention to what's going on watching the space. And I recently moved to Puerto Rico, because that's what you do when you reach crypto level 5, you got to move to Puerto Rico, it’s in the rules so I'm just doing what I can.
I'm having a lot of fun man. I'm having so much more fun as I've gotten out of the sort of centralized tech and moved into decentralized tech where I love it.
Getting to the Bottom of Blockchain and NFTs
Rich: Travis we covered this topic. pretty frequently, but I was hoping for our audience, if you wouldn't mind just level-setting just a bit here. And just in very broad terms, if you would talk about, you know, what blockchain is, NFT and Web3 are just in very general terms, just for people who may not know for sure.
Travis: Right. So the very first instance of blockchain was Bitcoin, right? So Bitcoin is essentially a distributed database that holds every financial record that's ever happened on that chain. It was revolutionary. Why? Because it figured out the double-spend issue on technology.
So like, if I send Dom, an mp3 or a PDF, he can send it out to whoever, he can send out to Rich, he can send it out to a million other people. But if I send $10 worth of Bitcoin over the Dom, Dom doesn't want me to be able to take that same $10 and send it to rich and everybody else. And so, there was a double spend issue. And by creating a blockchain, which is a verifiable database, where the records can be checked, and the transaction can be checked, they know exactly how much you have in your wallet. And then if you send it to this person, that's no longer in your wallet, it's in their wallet. And so that database, the distributed database, and those decentralized nodes, there is no bank of Bitcoin there is no Bitcoin headquarters.
Bitcoin is located on the computers of several 100,000, if not millions of servers all around the world, that are verifying and double-checking those, those transactions.
So it's unlike, say, the Federal Reserve Bank, which they just print money out of thin air, and turn those printing presses on and print print print print print print print, print us into hyperinflation eventually. And with Bitcoin, there's only 21 million of them, right?
So to me, I saw this as like, wow, once I realized the Federal Reserve Bank was neither federal nor reserve, they print money out of thin air, it's not backed by gold, it's backed by nothing except government say so and big war machines, then you go, wow, okay. And basically, the dollar, the reason the dollar has been so powerful, is because countries have had to buy dollars before they can buy oil worldwide, the dollar is the world's reserve currency. But that's actually changing, I knew the end of cycle was coming up, I didn't realize it was going to be as soon as it is.
But once that once they started kicking Russia off of the financial system, Russia is now going to be working with China, Iran, India, Brazil, other countries, and they're no longer going to be using dollars, right, to buy oil, they're going to be trading amongst themselves, which means all those countries that will no longer need to hold reserves of dollars, which means they're going to flood back into America creating hyperinflation.
So that's a big key thing for most people to realize, is that Bitcoin is very scarce, there's only 21 million of them. And a lot of them, I would say probably 3- 4 million of them are lost or locked into wallets that can't be accessed. Two million have not been mined yet. So there's not a whole lot of them out there. And you don't have to buy a whole one, you can buy a very small amount.
Related Article: Metaverse, Web3 to Converge: 4 CX Changes Marketers Can Expect
Rich: You're getting deep here. And I just wanted to stop for a second because I think you bring up a good point. What is the limitation of 22 million Bitcoins? Why is that? And why is that important?
Travis: Twenty-one million Bitcoin ever. Why? Because they don't print more of them.
So what that means is there's a finite amount, unlike the dollar where they just keep printing them.
We have no idea Rich, how many dollars there are in existence, because they don't tell us, they've never told us there's never been an audit of the Federal Reserve, you know how many there are.
And so, if you have an unlimited supply of anything, then the more you print, the less valuable they are, and the more of them you need to buy stuff.
I don't know if people see $4, $5, $10 gasoline, but eventually we're going to be seeing, $20, $25 gasoline, because of hyperinflation.
So what does it mean? Why is it important is it's Bitcoin is deflationary in nature, meaning each one will rise in value over time, as the dollar becomes worth less and less Bitcoin should become worth more and more.
Although there was the ebb and flow of the markets, but over time, Bitcoin will be worth $100,000 if not half a million if not a million someday. Why? Because it's worth so many dollars? No, it's because the dollar has become worth less.
Rich: What was it that Peter Earl said, the economist and research fellow, he said Bitcoin’s history is largely one of astronomical growth punctuated by a few severe price retrenchments.
Travis: Yeah, right. Yeah, so every time you've had a big run in Bitcoin, once it's past an all-time high, it's never dipped down below the previous all-time high.
And so when it just keeps kind of trending upwards, people freak out about it, because they don't really understand it. But here we are.
Everybody has a mobile device, right? Why do I need to go to a bank? Everybody has a mobile device. That's why NFT's and Metaverse and gaming is so important as a mass adoption tool for crypto, is the game changed, with COVID right? Everybody was staying at home. What were they doing? They were on their phones all day long plan and learning and figuring things out. And so the digital asset space just really took off.
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Barriers to Blockchain Adoption
Rich: I always thought like to ask is this hype? Is this real? After much research, you know, Blockchain is a foundational technology is real, and it's truly starting to live up to some of the hype that, you know has been heaped upon it.
Web3, on the other hand, I still tend to remain more cynical on, because it's, you know, so many disparate technologies are essentially all fringe technologies, at this point.
But according to Deloitte 88% of senior executives, think that blockchain tech will eventually, you know, achieve mainstream adoption. I'm just curious to know where you think we're at in the hype cycle with Blockchain. and what you think the biggest barriers to the mainstream adoption are?
Travis: Well, I would say this, let me address your, your skeptical nature of Web3. And here's how I define and here's how others are defining it as well, because Web1 was essentially, you can come to the internet and you could read information on the internet, you would just type in a URL and you could read it, you couldn't really interact with it, couldn't really leave comments. You could just say, oh, great, this is nice, I read it.
Web2, you can read it, and you can write on it, right, which became the rise of social media because we're able to write and share our feelings and thoughts on things, the blogosphere, all social media, the tweets and all that, right. We're able to write and share and create content.
Web3 is you can read, you can write, and essentially you own it. It's an ownership of provenance of ownership that proves that these certain digital assets and these certain things are yours. You said them, it's verified. You did this, you own this, right? So it's an ownership thing.
I think Metaverse as a term, is a little bit of a misnomer, because there's not a Metaverse. The definition of Metaverse is one. Right now, what we're seeing is a lot of virtual worlds that are not bridged together very well. Right? So they don't speak they're not interoperable. This chain doesn't talk to that chain yet. Well, they will. There are some tools that are already sort of popping in.
So eventually, we're going to see a true Metaverse, which takes all of that it's the step beyond the internet.
We're not quite there yet. I would say we're probably like Web2.7 or something.
Travis: Web2.7. We're not quite full-on Web3, but we can see it.
Although guys, I'm already on Web5, just so you know, I’m way ahead.
Dom: Ooh, innovator.
Innovation in Web3
Rich: Yeah. So, you know, my thoughts are that there's going to be multiple and different metaverses and verticals associated with them. You know, what should marketers be looking for here? And what do you think is ripe for innovation in this space?
Travis: Well, I think what is becoming most important in Web3 is community, right? Think about what is your community needs, because a lot of times companies and even projects are popping up launching NFT projects, but they're complete BS because they have no real real-world utility, right?
The thing about this is like, how can you deliver delight to your audience? How can you add value to your community? And in what ways? What can your digital assets unlock for them? Right?
And it depends on what kind of business you are, right? If you're a retail business, maybe you have an NFT card of some sort, that if people own it, then that enables them to get X amount of discounts, or it enables them to get first-purchasing capabilities on certain things, right? Through rarity deals. So it's like, oh, I have this card right here. I have this NFT. This enables me to earn points, and then I can actually maybe someday, maybe if it's a reward and loyalty thing, where you're a sports team or something, and you can actually chat with some of your fans.
Like what's most relevant? What experiences do your audience and your community crave around your business? How can you add value to them? And do digital assets make it make sense with that?
A lot of times, rewards and loyalty are one way. But there are other things that you know, people are trying to find ways to make money in this crazy world. And there are ways that people can resell things that they've acquired from you. Are there other opportunities for people to leverage those assets?
It really boils down to your community, and you're leveraging your community and delivering delight to them and adding value to them, then you win. So, if that's your North Star, it's not how do you expunge as much profit per person out, which is a lot of old school capitalism, how can I get as much money from everyone as we can?
And how can we actually distribute some of that, like, there's this really cool stuff that's happening for musicians where they're literally selling their music as NFT's at a low rate, people are coming in and buying them, then they're actually out there selling them on the secondary market and making a tremendous amount of value, supporting their freaking artists, their fans, their true fans of theirs. So how do you activate your fans and your community and deliver delight and value to them?
That's really what you should be thinking about when you're when you're talking about marketing in the Web3 age.
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Where to Start With Web3
Dom: So I'm a CEO, and I tell my CMO, my chief marketing officer, Web3, tell me more. What do we need to do to get into it? So, like right now, like what's the first move for a marketing leader like a CMO? If they're looking into future Web3 involvement?
Travis: Well, I would say they need to start understanding it for one, right? Go on OpenSea, there's some really, really great analytics tools that can help you identify what's going on in some of the space.
Like, there's been some big shoe brands that have jumped in feet first into the Metaverse like Adidas, they have a really cool NFT project that they partnered up with Bored Ape. And so they're doing some really good stuff.
That project, it's just beginning. Like they're not even really sharing all the stuff that they're doing. But the thing that they released, they released 30,000 of them, they were selling at .4 eth apiece, I believe or .2 eth, and now each one is going for 2 eth each. And so that's huge. And every time you resell those, every time those get resold, Adidas is getting 10% of that sell.
So it sold for .2 eth originally, and now they're going for 2 eth, and they get 10%. So every time it resells, and it's resold a bunch, they're getting .2 eth again, so they're making a lot of money on those secondary sales.
That's one key thing to think about these digital assets. Say for example, Topps baseball, I love collecting baseball cards as a kid, my dream card is a 1952 Mickey Mantle rookie, right? never gotten one. But if I did, it's gonna cost me a few million last time one sold in mint condition was like $5.2 million. Topps made 0% of that, right? They originally sold that pack for 5 cents, that's all the money they made on that.
Now, if that was a digital asset, and they were making 10% on that sale, they would have made $520,000 from that sale, right? Because NFT's have that sort of long tail, you could sell 100,000 times and every time tops is gonna get a little bit of that, right, which some people look at that as like, oh, well, that sucks. That's a tax, I've got to pay for eternity.
But really, it's a creator benefit, if you create something that has value, then every time that's sold, the creator shouldn't be able to get a little bit of that. So really, you got to understand the space, you got to dive in and spend hours researching it, you can't just jump in without understanding how it is.
And I would say this is, that if you're a CMO, I would maybe go out and find people in your organization that are Gen Z, maybe and that are all about crypto and all about NFT's, and learn from them, engage them because a lot of times the younger audience are going to be the ones that are sort of activated on this. I'm not in the younger group.
But I see things as I mentioned. And so, we were the very first podcast ever mentioned NFT's in 2017. I bought NFT's in 2017, I promptly lost them because I did not have my meta mass backed up and my computer crashed.
And so, but you know what, the people who are the pioneers, you're the ones that get the arrows. And that's life, and you got to figure out and keep moving forward.
But, that's really what I would say to CMOS is that if you're not spending time out there research and looking at the projects that are successful, and if you're a big money brand, Adidas, they went in and spent a quarter million dollars on Bored Ape, because they know that that's a really big community, there's really influential, and they were leveraging that Bored Ape within their marketing.
Nike went out and bought a badass digital visual effects studio called Artifact, they bought them.
And so more and more people like these, visualizations are really cool art, like, everybody loves these experiences, and as ARs come in VRs are starting to be more prominent. Everybody has a smartphone, creating things that are cool, that have utility, that unlock experiences in some ways, those are a winning thing.
But you really have to figure it out for your brand, like what is it makes the most sense for you and your particular industry? Because quite frankly, there might not be any use case at all for yours.
But depending on what industry you are, there could be an amazing one. You’ve just got to discover that.
Rich: Just a couple of quick follow up things. You mentioned eth a couple times. And I believe you're talking about Ethereum, when you mentioned .4 Ethereum. I just wanted to clarify that for our audience. Because you said that several times and somebody who doesn't know would be like, I don't understand what that means.
Travis: You don't know what eth is people you need to get with it bro, lady.
Dom: It sounds like a nickname for one of my high school friends or something. Yeah, we had me Jason, eth.
Travis: Yeah, well, actually Ethereum was one of the big crypto projects that came after Bitcoin and Ethereum allows for what's called smart contracts.
So, if this then that, so you can actually really build some cool stuff into this to programmatically move money. So once this happens, this is triggered, boom, the money gets sent. Right. And so smart contracts have really revolutionized this space.
NFT's are essentially a smart contract. They can be audio video images, links, text AR, VR, 360. They can unlock geo locations, they can evolve over time. They're essentially little smart programmable computers and you can do whatever you imagine.
And so NFT's are not just JPEGs they can be all kinds of things, and they can change and evolve, which I love, and so I think we're gonna see a lot more use-cases of NFT's as we're getting out of the NFT infancy, we're moving on down the road from that, and people are evolving in and saying, hey, we don't care just about collectibles, we got to have cool utility and do stuff.
And a lot of the main NFT's are launched on Ethereum. And Ethereum right now, one Ethereum is about $3,100, and its all-time highs close to $5,000. And we’ll most likely see $15,000 Ethereum before we know it.
Not financial advice, but so much is built on Ethereum. You can't build a lot of these same things on Bitcoin, because Bitcoin is its stored value. And it's sort of like gold. It's like you get some Bitcoin, you store it, you keep it, you want to just let it grow. Ethereum is in and out with Etherem for me, I'm buying stuff, I'm buying NFT's I'm trading, I'm saying, if somebody wants me to send them crypto, I normally send them Ethereum or USD T, which is US dollar tether version, or the USD C which is basically a stable coin, that one of them is worth a US dollar essentially.
So you can sell your crypto converted into a stable coin and save it, however, has the dollar becomes less and less stable. I don't know how those stable coins are going to act over time.
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Rich: Earlier, I asked you what you think the biggest barriers to blockchain adoption are? And you mentioned, what I think the biggest blockchain blocker is. And you had said that you bought NFT's and then you lost your wallet, Private Key.
So that to me, right there is like an Achilles heel to this, if a user loses their private key, they lose access to their wallets forever. There's no give backs or password resets. And this custodial responsibility, I feel is like probably the single biggest blocker that prevents mainstream acceptance.
Travis: Yeah. But it's also too, it's also the thing that frees you from the need of banks, and they have these big daddy overlords that essentially run the world. There's pros and cons with anything.
Once you understand the pitfalls of it early on, it was really early, I didn't understand it. But you got to understand where we're headed, where technology is not going away. Unless an EMP destroys everything. Let's hope that doesn't happen.
But we need to make sure that we keep hold of our stuff. Like if I lose my keys to my home, you know, there is a little bit of something, I can go and get new keys, I can go get, if I lose my keys in my car, I can do that. But if I go down and I'm walking down the street, and I have $100,000 in my pocket, and I lose my $100,000 I'm not getting that back. So it's part of the whole deal. There's no company that you can go cry and complain to Karen. Sorry, you just have to be responsible.
Rich: I'm not a Karen.
Travis: I'm talking about Karen, you know.
Rich: I'm kidding. I forget what the male equivalent is, but I'm more like that.
Travis: Well, people concern themselves on that. But then it's like they end up fear losing themselves out of opportunity. And you go oh, Bitcoin, crypto, it's not really a thing. But actually, the biggest scam is paper money, because there's it's not backed by gold. It's only backed by government say so.
And so this is actually backed by algorithmic math. And they're distributed networks. They need no trust, because trust is built into the system.
And as I said, pre-show to you guys, like I've not accepted one paper dollar in over five years, it's all been crypto for five years, I've lived off of crypto, I get my crypto. If I need to get cash, well, I'll convert it on Coinbase or all convert it on crypto.com or wherever you can do it, finance, you convert it to cash, send the money to your bank, boom, it's not a problem.
If I want to use crypto in a live scenario, I can easily do that as well. I got debit cards that attach to certain exchanges. And I can convert crypto to cash immediately on the app and then immediately use that debit card. So I've had no problems anywhere in the world using crypto for over five years. And some people are still scared about crypto. But Bitcoin was created and launched in early 2009. We're 13 years into this thing. It's not going away. It's only becoming more prevalent.
Rich: I think it is becoming more widely adopted. And I don't think it's going away either.
Building the Web Infrastructure on Blockchain?
The concept of Web3 is that the internet evolves into a completely new underlying infrastructure, you know, that is going to be based on blockchain technology. And, you know, like, from my cynical journalism mind, it's like the stated hope is that it will provide more of a decentralized environment uses token-based economics, you know, to perform all these transactions, but and it blockchain has great value. But is it the right technology to base the entire infrastructure of the internet on?
Travis: Blockchain is potentially the technology to keep us a free humanity. Right? Because the Powers That Be love centralization, I think that blockchain is the last hope to keep us away from a digital technocratic authoritarian society, which we're moving towards.
I don't know if you see what happens in China, like in Shanghai what's going on right now, they haven't been able to leave their homes since the 27th of March, they have no water, they have no food, and they're not able to leave their homes, if they do, they disappear. And everybody has a social credit score, oh, we don't like what you had to say about this topic, you get disappeared, or you're no longer able to fly on an airplane or ride on a bus. That's what's in China.
And now they're implementing that in Canada. And so you got to pay attention. And I'm not even gonna go deep into what's going on with the Uighur population in Western China with a Panopticon that they built over there with the biggest security apparatus of all time with the millions of cameras all over the place, monitoring everyone. And they're trying to eliminate a lot of those Western Muslims in China. And that's one of the worst cases of human rights violations of all time, very few people talk about it.
But those are the kinds of things that will come if we don't find a way out with decentralization, we don't need all these intermediaries, we don't need these controlling big daddies telling us what we can do and what we can't do with our money. Like even with my debit card, I can only pull out $500 a day from the ATM, I can only spend $5,000 a day of my money, like when I moved to Puerto Rico, I tried to buy a car. And I was like, what they wanted me to buy it with a credit card or get a loan. And I'm like, no, I got cash in the bank like, and so it was nearly impossible for me to buy that without having to come back to Kansas City, go and get a cashier's check, bring it back, hugely inefficient.
But instead, I was able to get my crypto, to be able to convert it on my other card and get the cash out and pay for it. So crypto is a great equalizer. It takes power away from the big bankers and it takes power away from the globalist and gives power back to you.
You have a bank in your pocket. Right. And so there's a lot of power to that. So, do I think that the whole internet can be built on blockchain? No, because blockchain is a database, right? There's a lot of technologies that can connect and hook into it. That can make a lot of things a lot better, and keep us sovereign.
Dom: So it's great Travis that you walk us through your experiences, it really helps people kind of visualize this like, alright, well, how does it affect me as a person, my money, my currency, what I can do.
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What Customer Experience Professionals and Marketers Need to Know
Now let's shift it to the brands and the marketers like, where do they come in? Like, what are some of these practical applications you think are going to be successful or already have been successful? When it comes to blockchain, and marketing and marketers specifically?
Travis: Yeah. Well, I mean, that example about Adidas earlier, right. It's interesting to see what they're going to do here on the Metaverse. They're jumping in creating experiences for people in the Metaverse and a lot of times, a lot of brands are jumping in on Sandbox, which is a Metaverse, actually a virtual world, but they're calling it a Metaverse.
It's sort of Mine Crafty, and look and feel where it's got that sort of pixel art flavor. And there's other ones out there as well, Cryptovoxel. There's another one out there, Decentraland, Victoria VR. And so a lot of times these brands are going out and building these Metaverse visual worlds experiences. So where are people going? Or where is your audience at what's relevant for them?
So really, I think it always goes back to understanding your audience. We've always talked about that. If you didn't know who your audience is, where are they connecting online? Where are they spending their time? Who are they're interacting? What is important to them?
If you identify that and you can identify that oh gaming, and Metaverse and crypto and these kinds of things are interesting to your audience. Well, then maybe you need to be a part of it. If your audience demographic is a little bit younger, then you probably need to find ways to loop them in where they are right? Where are they spending all their time?
A lot of young people are spent a lot of time on tick tock. They're playing games. They're in Fortnite, if they're younger, they spend time in Roblox, you know, the Roblox game. They're doing all kinds of stuff. And the younger generation is already adapted to spending money on digital currencies, right. It's the old fogies that don't get it. The young kids like, oh yeah, it's no brainer. They buy Madden points all the time, they're buying fortnight skins all the time, they got Robux. In Roblox, they're doing all kinds of that stuff, and all these games.
So it's like where your audience is, is where you need to be shifting. And if they're spending lots of time doing digital things with digital currencies and digital items, digital fashion and digital and downloading digital music and jumping in and doing so many things, then, quite frankly, you probably need to find a way to do some of that too. And then pay attention to what Nike is doing pay attention to what Adidas is doing, pay attention to what some of these other brands are doing. They're going out there buying crypto digital assets to dive into these communities and be a part of these communities.
And so there's a lot of things that can happen in those communities. You know, Discord is huge right now for crypto and for NFT's and blockchain kind of stuff. And a lot of stuff is happening in there. And imagine this, imagine if you have one of those Bored Apes that are now worth a quarter million dollars each, if not a half a million dollar each, how valuable is that for you to be in those communities with all these people who are probably pretty successful. You know, if you're buying and a new Bored Ape now this point, you're paying half a million dollars, you got some money. So these are some influential people.
And so by connecting with these influential people, those are the ones that are the change-makers that can move mountains, potentially, for your brand. So, a lot of times these NFT projects and this Metaverse place, they're sort of connecting to the overall bigger story. And they're trying to become a part of that story. So if it makes sense for your brand to do that, then you need to think about it.
Dom: Yeah, like when so many trends that marketers face. And I've covered the space for almost 10 years now. You know, what happens is a new technology emerges and everyone starts talking about it, like an example, artificial intelligence in marketing, customer data platforms, that get so much hype. Now with Blockchain, Web3, NFT's, are we going to see sort of the same kind of emergence here of vendors jumping in and throwing themselves at it?
Travis: Oh they already are.
Dom: Yeah, yeah. Like throwing themselves at marketing teams, hey, CMO, we got you covered, you know. So marketing, the question, basically, is, what are marketers looking out for? Is there going to be a lot of technology developments and integrations with these trends as we go forward? Or is it going to be more like, hey, we need to change our internal processes, that kind of thing. Like, where's the rubber meet the road here, and how they get their work done?
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Travis: I think a lot of it's not so much the technology, because the technology is sort of the underlying thing. And a lot of that a lot of those roads are built, you're gonna, if you're launching something, you're going to need to have some technologist on there who understand solidity. That is what smart contracts are built on, on Ethereum is that, the solidity program.
But I think it's really creative, right? Like, think about this, think of how big of a shift it's been, for folks who maybe in the past, were generating some badass 3D sort of visual effects and art, and they're like, oh, wow, thanks for the $1,500.
Well, now, those artists are out there, they're not gonna do anything for less than $50,000. So it's like having an in house capabilities to be able to create really kick-ass visual effects, and great art and great experiences. I think that's part of it. And then having the creative chops to be able to say, what is this do? What is this unlock within our brand within our mission?
By having this, what does this NFT or this digital asset, what value is it bringing to our group? If they collect more of them does it unlock something? What does it do? Because art by itself in the NFT world is just okay, great. It's art, but does it do anything? Does it give me anything else, by me having this to I get additional things?
And so as a marketer, you're going to want to think about that, as these NFT's are a way to unlock a relationship with your community. Conversely, it's also a great way to build relationships from your audience to you, right, like if you're a musician, or if you're like an artist, and now you have an NFT series, and they're able to, to earn value on that, and they're connecting with you they have access to you, they haveaccess to the brands. And if some of these people who are who are buying your NFT's and partnering with you are your biggest fans, well, then that just gives you a great opportunity to talk to your biggest fans and see, what else is it that they want.
So everything's gonna be a little different, there's not one-size-fits-all, it all comes down to your audience, it all comes down to figure out what they're looking for, and how you can add long-term value to them.
Rich: If I was to say to you, let's say there's a health food beverage company, they make a health food beverage drink. This is their job, their marketing departments there, and they're saying themselves, I want to make sure we're a part of this future.
So what I'm hearing from you, is you're saying, is to find the communities that you're already chasing after if you're doing your marketing right, and then integrate NFT's into that community to be a part of that?
Travis: Maybe. You maybe don't need NFTs, that's just that you're asking about what NFT's are like, they don't maybe need them, right. But I guarantee you if you're a health food drink company, and you're trying to target a certain young group between maybe the ages of 18 to 34, right, a lot of them are going to be online digitally, right.
So it's just part of your overall digital strategy. Maybe it is you need to reach out to influencers and connect with them on Tick Tock because that's where they are, and talk about your amazing drinks. Or it's like, what you could do is each one of your flavors could be its own little character, and they all have their own superpowers or something right? And you just make it fun.
So a lot of branding and marketing is about making things interesting and fun in some ways that engage your audience that make them want to interact with you. They could do NFTs. There's a lot of things, potentially that you could do, but do you need to do them? Is it necessary that you're gonna be branded him doing NFTs?
No, a lot of times, brands are not going to do anything in this space and the independents are going to come in and do stuff in this space and engage and then grab that market share. There's already a lot of independents and stuff out there that are out rocking and growing great audiences, creating brand new IP.
And so in a lot of ways, it might be that you connect with these audiences of these different projects that already have an audience that's already doing cool stuff. And you find way to leverage with them, just like Adidas did with Bored Apes, right?
So there's some other stuff that's going to pop up, this may be relevant for your brand, you're a health food drink company, then maybe you're connecting with the spiritual crowd and the vegans, or maybe there's some other projects out there that you want to partner with in some way to give them value. So you know, maybe create your own NFTs, but you add value to other people's projects NFTs to tap into their audience in some ways.
Podcast Wrap Up
Rich: This has been super interesting, Travis, I can't say thank you enough for coming on the show and sharing with our audience.
Before you go, there are a couple things. I'd like to know if you could share what you feel like is, you know, like your top tips for people who are in marketing right now, regarding Web3 and blockchain.
Travis: I would say this is just get in and start researching it, right.
One thing I do every year as a marketer, and I still do to this day, is I go out and I'm like, I'll type in oh, 2022 Tech Trends, I want to see what Deloitte has done, I want to see what McKinsey has done, I want to see what Ernst and Young says, I want to see what all these top consulting firms are saying is trends for those particular industries. And then I've always gone in, I look at that I go, Okay, some of that's accurate. Some of that's kind of far off. And I'll look and I'll see what is relevant for my particular industry.
Every industry is not the same one size does not fit all, I would say probably a vast percentage of businesses and brands, probably won't be doing stuff with NFTs for a while until it makes sense for them from the utility side, to reveal themselves to that space. Some there will be, like if you're in fashion, and clothing or music, that kind of stuff. Obviously, it makes so much sense. One, an NFT can actually be provenance of your merchandise.
So say you have a Chanel bag, and it was made in China, and you have an NFT that proves that that's authentic, and you sell that to somebody else that proves it's authentic, then the value of that is going to maintain itself longer over time. There's a provenance to it. There's a deed, a digital deed that says there's true ownership to this particular thing. Whereas in a traditional world, we don't have that because how it works is Chanel sends X amount of fabric to China to print these 500 bags, and they print the 500 bags, but then they have an additional fabric to make another 100, guess what they do? They make another 100, and then they sell those on the black market that aren't technically Chanel bags, but they are Chanel bags, but they're not technically Chanel bags, but they are so you can't tell them apart.
If you have an NFT attached to them some of those high goods then it is, so there's different things with NFTs that's revealing itself over time to people and to brands and to just overall the industry, that there's going to be lots of value over time that these digital assets that will have provable ownership will provide.
Dom: Travis, we wish you really knew more about this topic. Man, I wish we found someone else Rich, you know, with blockchain, someone with a little more passionate about it. What do you think next time maybe?
Rich: Yeah, maybe. Before we let Travis go. I would love to let our audience know Travis where they can connect with you in social media?
Travis: For sure. Yeah. You can look everywhere, Sir Lord Travis Wright is my name. I'm actually a Scottish landowner, and we've been Knighted. So it's funny to me that that I can put my name up.
So actually, if you type in Travis Wright, anywhere, you can pretty much find me. I'm TW, phonetically teedubya, on Twitter and on LinkedIn. And on Instagram, you have to add a W at the very end (teedubyaw).
And I'm actually working on an interesting project right now called ancient wisdom.io, which is a Web3 NFT Metaverse play. And our whole goal is the sort of uneth the world and creating technologies and finding changemakers to work with, to brainstorm to identify ways to save society from the grips of the authoritarian elite. So in a spiritual way, it's all good. So that's what I'm working on.
Dom: Before we wrap up, did you know that Travis is a former I think former, unless you're still rolling them out somewhere, comedian. Is that true?
Travis: I have known to rock the microphone. On stage
Dom: Who are you most like who do you most like?
Travis: I would not say that. I'm like anyone I would say that my, I'll give you an idea of like my five favorite comedians of all time. George Carlin, one of my favorites. Also Bill Hicks loved him. He was one of my favorites. Richard Pryor, another one.
All my favorite ones are dead, Mitch Hedberg, he's dead, I like Robin Williams, he's dead, funny people who are thinkers. So I think George Carlin was probably my favorite because he was such a thinking man's comedian. And he would call BS when you need to call BS. And I think that's why he's not around anymore. He called BS little too much.
Dom: He's the GOAT.
Rich: Thank you again, Travis for coming on the show. And the podcast was great. And I think it's put a lot of really good information out there about Web3 and Bitcoin. So thank you again for coming on the show.
Rich: And we'll catch up with you next time on CX Decoded. Thank you for listening today.