Former President Donald Trump recently announced the launch of his first non-fungible token (NFT) collection on Truth Social, the social media platform he created after getting banned from Twitter.
The collection, which consisted of some 45,000 “digital trading cards,” sold out in 12 hours (even though they allegedly used unauthorized copyrighted images). Their prices and trade volume subsequently plummeted.
Here’s a look at why some crypto investors and NFT enthusiasts bought into the hype anyway.
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What The Trump NFT Collection Got Right
As part of the launch, Trump guaranteed that NFT buyers would be entered into a ‘Trump Sweepstakes.’
Winners would get to visit Mar-a-Lago, his private club in Palm Beach, Florida. Perhaps Trump’s most vociferous critics would want the opportunity to get up close and personal with him.
And that is one of the many reasons why the Trump Digital Trading Cards collection generated so much interest from investors, NFT enthusiasts and first-time buyers.
At a time when NFT sales are dwindling month on month (OpenSea volume plummeted over 95% from a peak high in 2021), the Trump NFT collection — even with a $99 offer price — had a low entry barrier. At a floor price of 0.09 ETH/USD, you could buy a digital card of Trump dressed as a sheriff, superhero, golfer, and standing in front of the Statue of Liberty.
Some NFTs, like #4128 which is autographed by Trump, were quoting prices as high as 4,500 ETH on the NFT Platform OpenSea.
With NFTs being allocated automatically, there was an additional element of excitement that was seemingly instrumental in its success.
While most designs are repeated with slight color variations, buyers were lured in by the chance to own the bespoke pieces, which would presumably trade for much more than $99.
Trump licensed a company called NFT INT to develop and market the digital portraits (he reportedly has no controlling stake or even ownership in the firm).
NFT INT on their part will receive 10% of the sale proceeds, while the rest would probably end up in Trump’s account.
This is a rather unique approach that has been adopted by the former POTUS, himself a staunch critic of the crypto space.
Can NFT Creators Mimic the Trump Formula?
Whether Trump decides to launch more NFT collections in the future remains to be seen. Still, he has provided NFT creators with a blueprint to market their next NFT projects.
Celebrity depictions on affordable NFTs, especially when they offer buyers the chance to meet their favorite personalities, is exactly what set apart the Trump NFT collection from the others.
Trump’s larger-than-life persona, coupled with his dedicated following, explains why his NFTs bucked the current bearish trend to trade as high as $650 in the days after the initial launch.
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For the majority of 2022, NFT sales have not only plunged by ~90% from August 2021, but the average sales value had dropped down to ~$100 from levels as high as ~2,100 recorded in February 2022.
By studying the NFT market and pricing their NFTs at par with the current trends, NFT INT may have shown what it takes to pave the way for mass NFT adoption — an important lesson for budding NFT creators.
Perhaps the success of Trump NFTs will inspire other personalities — like Tesla TSLA chief Elon Musk — to follow suit and jumpstart the NFT market out of its current slump.
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