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Novel Use Case II: Incentivized Community

Akhil Ramgopal

Head of Product

In web3, the opportunities to bring your community deeper into the fold are virtually endless.

Rather than just having paid users, brands can now retain committed stakeholders through NFT ownership. Critically, this cohort of customers is inherently bought into your brand’s future. 

In addition, thanks to secondary markets, your NFT-holding customers are tied directly to the success of your community. Holders retain the value of their NFT membership and can resell it at any point, thus incentivizing higher participation and compounded value to other members. 

Using Novel, your customers now have a vested interest in building a thriving brand ecosystem.

Below, we’ll run through our guide to getting started with NFT-gated communities, with direct feedback, best practices, and tactical advice from some of our friends at Novel.

"It has always taken more than just a product to make someone a superfan."

Eli Weiss

1. Eli Weiss on zero to one community building tactics

When I think about brand, so much of it is shared values, mission, etc. Yet, in the past, companies have just taken groups of people that have purchased their product and put them in a Facebook group and called it a community. From the surface, that could work, but what it misses is depth. 

It has always taken more than just a product to make someone a superfan. Liking the product is one thing, aligning with the vision is even better. The struggle around community with brands is that there is often a very clear reason why the brand created that group -- a way to keep close to customers to drive more revenue, but what's in it for customers? 

Incentive-aligning is such a powerful motivation, yet it has not been utilized within community building. NFT's give customers the ability to hold a part of the brand, a part of the foundation of the house they are building. The stronger the community + utility given, the higher the value of the NFT. Everyone wins. 

As with every new technology, yes, there are grifters. There are rug pulls. There are those that aim for quick wins. NFTs are definitely not any different. You still need to put in the work to create something special. But when you do, everyone wins.  

2. Structuring and scaling ongoing member interaction

The success of any community and its depth of member engagement, regardless of whether it lives online or offline, is entirely dependent on the intimacy fostered among participants.

Given the nature of NFTs, each member is automatically an economic stakeholder in your community, yet scaling genuine 1:1 member interaction is critical for the ecosystem to endure.

To accomplish this, we’ve coached brands on how to design exclusive product drops, drive community-forward marketing initiatives, and host on and offline brand activations. However, the best examples of true community engagement lie in the emerging creator economy space.

Every digital creator today relies on their innate ability to connect intimately with fans at scale. The best creators across the globe all share one thing in common: They make each and every follower, customer, or subscriber feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves.

We recommend that brands follow a similar path, while not only building exclusive offerings and driving outsized value to their NFT holders but proactively seeking out sources of product and community feedback along the way. By involving customers and members directly in your roadmap and future experience development, genuine engagement will naturally flow.

3. How to launch and curate communities using Novel

Leveraging NFT-gated communities through your Shopify store gives both your team and your customers an intimate space to connect on a highly personal level, while also building out a digital environment for your customers to bond over shared problems and niche interests.

Critically, NFT-gated communities are more of a private channel than what social media offers.

Regarding best practices, we’ve seen brands successfully execute AMAs, pull in founders and thought leaders for engaged discussion, and plan giveaways, to name just a few examples.

Based on our experience in web3, the quality of discourse is comparably higher in NFT-gated spaces like CPG Club and Bored Ape Yacht Club since your community members are brought into the experience. As a result, engagement across digital events can be expected to be higher.

From our lens at Novel, we believe the first step to curating communities is to focus on bringing in the right people, ideally existing or potential customers with demonstrated curiosity around the values of your brand, the pain points you solve, and the actual product that you sell.

To distill this point further, high-quality participants drive high-quality discourse, which in turn creates a virtuous cycle to attract new high-quality customers.

From a tactical lens, once you’ve identified a clear target demographic and psychographic for potential members as well as key selling points and benefits of joining the community, you can then move forward on launching an NFT mint experience and setting up a digital experience.

Using Novel, you can create, mint, and sell NFTs on your branded Shopify storefront, all without a single line of code. Through our platform, it’s easy to sell NFTs alongside physical products and merchandise, all while accessing a wider base of consumers with Shopify checkout.

And, most importantly, you can easily leverage Shopify’s commerce backend to grow sales.

See how Novel can help you reach your Web3 goals.

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Learn, how to mint, and sell NFTs on a branded Shopify storefront.

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