NFT airdrops started as a fun extra to reward holders in a community until it was demonstrated how they could transform into additional valuable investments that can be monetized. Before we dive into how NFT airdrops became a tool to add utility to a project, let's start with some background knowledge about airdrops.
An NFT airdrop is a gift or reward that holders receive for free as a token of gratitude for joining a project. These airdrops will appear in your wallet and are yours to own. They are also not limited to only NFTs, as projects can send holders free crypto, other forms of tokens or exclusive access to something special.
Not only are they acts of appreciation from NFT founders, they can also be helpful in generating hype around a project, as some airdrops are rare and valuable, and boost the exclusivity of a community.
There are 3 categories airdrops can fall into: Standard airdrops, holder airdrops and exclusive airdrops. Here's how each one works:
Standard airdrop: Often deployed after a task is completed, this can include joining a Discord community, participating in community events or for holding an NFT for a certain amount of time. These types of airdrops are a great way to reward loyal members for their continued support and promotional interactions.
Holder only airdrop: This is done by most NFT projects and usually appears after someone has minted an NFT. Think of it as a bonus reward for investing into a project.
Exclusive airdrop: This kind of airdrop is for the VIP members within a community, so to receive an airdrop of this level you may have to be a member for a certain amount of time and have demonstrated your dedication to the project. Often this can be done by regularly engaging in the community on social media, contributing to the project or purchasing a rare NFT within the collection.
Strategically planning these airdorps is important to provide incentive for members to keep up to date with the project, rather than purchasing an NFT and disappearing into the background. They are great marketing tools for founders to connect and motivate their community.
We will list a few examples of projects that have effectively used airdrops to show their appreciation, strengthen their branding and incorporate them as an extra utility.
The way this project deploys their airdrops and enhances their brand is brilliant. One way they use airdrops is by giving them out as prizes in order to promote a collaborative derivative NFT they created. So the winner of their competition would receive a rare NFT for free just by getting involved. By offering an opportunity to win a valuable investment, they generate a lot of attention on social media and promote their partnership, which then boosts the status of their collection.
Gary Vaynerchuck’s VeeFriends collection is a prime example of how to use airdrips to add monetary value to the community. His holders receive access to exclusive mini drops and partnerships with other huge projects. The NFTs from those airdrops can be sold on NFT marketplaces like OpenSea which allows holders to make profit. What is better than an NFT that gives you the opportunity to make more money?
The founders of this project made sure that all of the NFTs in this collection have unique perks and utility, including their airdrops. A cool approach that this team has used is to give airdrop holders the option for how they want to use their airdropped tokens. This makes the airdrops more versatile and gives holders the power to decide what is best for them.