With all the galleries and auction houses jumping on the NFT bandwagon, can social media platforms be far behind?
Recently, Adam Mosseri, head of the Meta-owned photo-sharing app Instagram, replied to a Q&A query posted on his stories that Instagram is considering bringing the sale of non-fungible tokens to the platform.
Earlier, Alessandro Paluzzi, one of the most famous app developers in the world, had tweeted about the possibility of the platform bringing its own set of NFTs or non-fungible tokens, known as Collectibles. According to Paluzzi, Instagram posts that offer NFTs will bear the label, “Collectibles,” to alert users about their purchases.
Although nothing concrete has come out except for a few cryptic tweets and Q&A replies, the possibility of the photo-sharing giant offering NFTs shows how powerful blockchain technology and its associated tech products have become.
Earlier, Jack Dorsey stepped down from his position as the CEO of Twitter publicly to give a chance to the younger leadership of the company. But the rumour mill has it that the real reason for his stepping down is because he wants to concentrate on his other company, Square, which is trying to foray into businesses related to crypto transactions. There’s no doubt that tech companies across the world are trying to cash in on the blockchain boom.
But from the point of view of art, how can the sale of NFTs on Instagram benefit the artist community?
The Power of Social Media
There’s no denying the fact that despite accusations of promoting fake news, poor fact-checking, and the alleged negative impact on the mental health of young adults, social media has been immensely helpful in promoting small businesses, struggling artists, and many others.
Instagram is the second-most popular platform after Facebook/Meta, with one billion monthly active users. With 71% of businesses in the United States using the platform and 45% of Instagram users being millennials (roughly between ages 18 and 45), the platform has great potential for creative artists to present their works to audiences engaged with NFTs.
Instagram offers a special feature called Instagram Shop that allows business accounts to directly link their product catalogue to their profile. One can share updates through posts, stories and reels. While this is already a great opportunity for artists to sell their artworks directly to end users, the availability of NFT artworks and collectables will further boost the business prospects of artists.
Benefits of Selling Art on Instagram
- Art is a visual medium and so is Instagram. It works well for businesses and individuals who prioritize aesthetic elements in their offerings. Art, fashion, food and other lifestyle and décor products work best for Instagram.
- Unlike Facebook, which is essentially a B2C (business-to-consumers) platform, or LinkedIn, which is a B2B (business-to-business) platform, Instagram serves both businesses and end-users. This feature of Instagram can greatly benefit those selling NFT artworks and collectibles to art dealers and collectors or individuals.
- The target demographic of NFT sales aligns well with the demographic of Instagram. If you are looking to sell your art to a tech-savvy population group, then Instagram may be the perfect platform.
- Digital marketing is all about algorithms. Instagram’s algorithm, say experts, is better suited for many businesses than Facebook’s. This ensures that an artist is well connected to his or her target audience.
- Currently, NFT artworks are only available on specialized platforms with limited reach. Instagram’s massive reach will help artists reach almost a billion active users per month. This has the great potential of democratizing the NFT space. Several digital artists are already on Instagram. Accounts like jformento, temi.coker, pulkit.kudiwal are just a few instances of young digital artists who are trying to make a mark in the NFT space through their art.
- While the payment mode of buying and selling NFT artworks has long been cryptocurrency, Instagram may well come up with alternative digital modes of payments that have a wider network of users. This too might help in making the space of NFT art more accessible.