Who wouldn't want to make an x50 or an x100 with an NFT investment?
However, it becomes almost more complicated than with cryptocurrencies, because there are several unique factors related to the world of NFTs that are not found in other assets. Nonetheless, let's try today to figure out how you can get your hands on those rare gems before everyone else.
Did we mention here at cazoo that I'm not a financial advisor, and I don't have any qualifications to give anyone advice on how to invest their money? Well, I repeat it. Read these lines only as an NFT education document, nothing else. Investments are very, very dangerous.
Let's get into this on how to find rare NFTs.
Follow a checklist
In September 2021, Sotheby's auctioned off a collection of 107 different types of monkeys, called the “101 Bored Ape Yacht Club”, and sold it for the crazy price of $ 24 million. What makes Bored Apes so incredibly valuable? It's worth digging into because it's a great example of what you should ideally be on the lookout for when you're scouring the net to find an NFT project that's ready to explode.
Let's analyze the Bored Apes collection following my 6 fundamental principles that I keep in mind when doing research on NFTs.
- The art.
- The Rarity
- The Developer Team.
- The Roadmap.
- The community
- Trading Metrics.
Or as I like to call it, the ATsRCMt, which flows so well on the tongue.
These are the qualities I look for every time I am studying a new NFT collection or even an already known NFT collection. Research these aspects too, they are fundamental, and always keep in mind that as in the crypto world there is nothing that gives you any guarantee. Always do your research before you fall in love with the latest collection that appeared in your Twitter feed.
Taking the Bored Apes collection as an example, those 5 principles are all fully taken.
Checklist 1: Art
From an artistic point of view, these Apes are not exactly what you expect to see in a work of art, not a Monet, not a Picasso, but they still show their intricate, ornate and authentic set of qualities, characteristics and properties.
This collection of 10.000 objects possesses over 170 immutable traits that were randomly selected and assigned to each NFT monkey when the collection was minted in early 2021.
For example, some of these monkey avatars have sunglasses or bunny ears, others bees have leopard or rainbow furs, others smoke cigars and eat pizza or even shoot laser beams out of their eyes. Other bees have cigarettes dangling from the mouth or even the red eyes of someone who is deeply stoned. But I say, are these the things that create a work of art? The concept is this: we can all agree that art is an incredibly subjective matter, but in the NFT world an artistic feature is found in those collections that have a significant amount of rare features and original traits.
This is mainly due to the fact that collections with a large amount of items and a low quality of unique AI-generated traits will struggle to produce single items with unique characteristics. Mathematically it's a simple equation: a collection of 20.000 items but with a total of only 20 unique traits, will contain many items that share very similar or sometimes even identical traits, thus reducing the potential for rare items within that collection and essentially limiting their chances of generating scarcity.
As you probably already guessed, when it comes to collections of high-level profile pictures, also called PFP (acronym for Photo for Profile, aka profile picture), rarity is absolutely essential.
Of course when we think of rarity in the traditional artistic sphere, one thinks of a van Gogh Starry Sky. But NFTs have taken the concept of rarity to a whole new level. In the virtual world of non-fungible tokens, rarity is not necessarily a property found within a work of art in the traditional sense of the term.
There are certainly artists who churn out collections that have an extremely well-defined artistic style: one above all, the Fidenza collections by Tyler Hobbs.
Trust by Tyler Hobbes
Fidenza is the idea of Tyler Hobbs, 34, who quit his job as a computer engineer to work as a full-time artist. He started doing ETH when he found out art blocks, an art platform that creates NFTs based on generative art, and has become a curated artist.
Most of these PFP collections on Opensea that are in fashion today are not artistic at all.
It is possible to make a comparison and consider these very precious NFT avatars as well as a collectible card from a baseball album or a Panini football album. Similar to how we perceive rarity in these unique trading cards, some individual NFTs within a particular collection are considered rarer and therefore more valuable than others. But why? It is usually due to some unique traits or authentic properties that only they possess and which are registered on the blockchain. Some examples? Laser eyes for Bored Apes, alien punks for Cryptopunk, TV faces for Cool Cats or Gen 0 cats for Cryptokitties.
Cazoo, let's get down to business! How is it possible to discover and understand the rarity in an upcoming NFT drop?
Checklist # 2: What to look for in an NFT: rarity
Many collectors will most likely agree with me that the rarity of an NFT still remains one of the most difficult features to identify in any collection, especially if it is new, but since all NFTs are stored and managed on the blockchain ... you want there to be no tools that allow us to gain some further understanding of the traits of the collection we are looking at?
One of the most used tools is rarity.tools, a website completely dedicated to classifying generative art and NFT collectibles based on rarity, hence its name. rarity.tools gives an overview of the characteristics and traits within a specific collection and allows asset holders to check the rarity of their individual NFTs.
But not only! They managed to score each feature (each trait, each distinctive trait) of every single NFT, and they called it the rarity score. The rarity score for all traits of that NFT is added together to produce what is a rarity metric of the NFT under consideration. Very clever… here's a quick rundown of how it works: for determine the rarity score of a specific trait, the platform takes the number of traits taken into consideration, in this case only one, divides it by the total number of objects that have that trait and then divides it again by the number of objects in the collection . This simple formula generates the rarity score of that particular trait and in order to get an overall rarity score for the NFT we considered, rarity.tools simply adds up all the scores of each trait.
The platform still has a great feature: it provides users with un calendar outlining all upcoming NFT drops, very convenient to be a little faster than the others and to observe those NFT projects that are foreseen in the immediate future. However, it is worth remembering that enormous attention must always be paid: in the current state of things there are dozens of new projects every week and the offer in the market is frankly growing at an unsustainable rate. Only a very small percentage of the collections launched in 2021 have survived in the long run .. the largest percentage is NFTs that go to zero. And I mean ZERO. Always be aware of this.
Another great way to read the rarity of a collectible is by analyzing its metrics on the Opensea Properties section.
Here for each collection listed on its market, Opensea will outline the recurrence of any rare traits in NFTs within its collection. This essentially allows potential buyers to gauge the rarity of the collector's item they are interested in without having to go through large amounts of in-depth analysis and endless research.
The main focus here is to make reading asset scarcity simple - like looking at a footballer's properties at Fifa.
When looking for rare items within a specific collection you want to look for those NFTs that hold the most unique and scarce properties, as they will be considered the most valuable. Right? Yes. When on the hunt for that NFT of the future, rarity must be one of your primary goals.
The next step on my checklist when it comes to researching a project is to thoroughly examine the founding team.
Checklist 3: The Founding Team
It's not always as straightforward as it seems to go back to who the minds behind a particular project are, because some founders of even notable projects like the Bored Ape Yacht Club, for example, still remain relatively silent as far as their true identities are concerned.
While anonymity is generally considered an absolute red flag in the crypto world, the Bored Ape Yacht Club is a real exception to the rule because despite their anonymity the team has managed to create perhaps one of the best known and most followed NFT brands.
Founding teams can be quite vocal about who they are, the roles they play in project development and their different work experiences. One of the most fitting examples is VeeFriends, an NFT project founded and led by internationally acclaimed entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, also known as Gary Vee. Being able to associate a project with a well-known founder (or group of founders) naturally increases confidence in the project itself, and confers confidence in the NFT holders of that collection regarding their investment. Furthermore, if the founders of the project already have a large social user base, just like in Gary Vee's example, trust in the NFT project can skyrocket. So, if possible, you need to take a look at the founding team to judge whether they will have the strength and drive to grow the project and that there is a high chance that they will deliver on their promises.
Third step: the Roadmap.
Checklist 4: The Roadmap
Just as with nearly all projects in the fungible token ecosystem, every non-fungible project (NFT) tends to present its investors with a roadmap, and while from a conceptual point of view the fungible and non-fungible token projects share similarities, when these are their individual roadmaps, those of the latter tend to incorporate a decidedly more artistic visual aspect to tell the future objectives of their project, partnership, air drops and recently also DeFi utility.
This has not always been the case: before the craze for NFTs in 2021, very few NFT projects featured a Roadmap: Cryptokittens and Cryptopunks, first minted in 2017, had the sole purpose of experimenting with the new ERC- token format. 721 on the Ethereum blockchain, not a real long-term project.
The most iconic Roadmap at the moment is that of the Bored Apes Yacht Clubs, and their idea has inspired many other projects to be more and more creative with their future updates.
As with any crypto project, such as Cardano, Polkadot, Solana or Luna, reading the project's roadmap is critically important to try to identify their long-term growth and to visualize upcoming developments.
Until now, the projects that have enjoyed the greatest parabolic growth have been those that have provided their NFT holders (the holders, in jargon) with some added values, continuously, from day one. What are these added values? These can be free NFT airdrops directly in the holders' wallets, ERC-20 token airdops, NFT staking projects to generate passive income, "membership benefits", access before others to other NFT launches, exclusive access to some Launchpads, and even exclusive access to their merchandise stores.
These are perhaps some of the more "desirable" features to look for within a project roadmap, but it goes without saying that until the development team demonstrates that it is implementing the things it promises, the roadmap as it is is not other than, in fact, a promise. Caution, always caution, especially if the project in question has just been coined and is in the early stages of its development.
That said if the NFT project you are trying to get into displays an interesting and somehow authentic art pattern, if it possesses the necessary amount of unique features to produce some rarity, and shows clear signs of a solid founding team valuing its community. of holders as well as its roadmap, then the chances of that project being successful in the long run are much greater than a project that does not have some of the criteria mentioned.
Many argue that this next step is perhaps the most relevant of all: community.
Checklist no. 5: the community
Personally, I am not entirely convinced that the value of an NFT collection rests entirely on its community, however I recognize that it undoubtedly plays an important role both in the creation of the project and in its continuous development.
The most effective way I've found to get a better understanding of how strong a project's community is is to actively get in touch with the project's official channels, especially via social media, such as Twitter, Telegram, Instagram or more likely Discord. .
When you first come across a collection on Opensea or any other NFT market the most natural progression from there is to check out its following and engagement levels on Twitter and Discord. This is for two reasons: first because we are still in the infancy in the life cycle of NFTs and they have not yet fully developed their ecosystem to the point where they can catalyze trading volume from financial structures, for example by leveraging lending and collateralisation of assets. , and secondly because, in order to make the NFT project effective from an investment point of view, a massive, engaged and active social community will in turn become a market in which to sell NFTs themselves. Furthermore, due to their inherent property of being a work of art, NFTs still remain a social animal, and must primarily thrive on social media attention.
As a result, if you see any Twitter account of a project growing inexorably within a few weeks, there is a likelihood that collectors are developing a belief that that particular project will go a long way, and likely the demand for NFTs within. of that specific collection may be on the rise.
Social media metrics aside, it might also be worth checking out how the community acts and interacts on Twitter and Discord, for example if the chat is always on and never sleeps it could definitely be a good sign of strength. Make sure you keep your eyes peeled when diving into a project's Discord.
Simply by analyzing the social media metrics of a new project one can get a relatively complete idea of the future NFT demand that that project will have: it is often a winning strategy when investing in NFTs during their minting, their creation, because in this phase prices are around 0,05 ETH and 0,08 ETH which is technically destined to be the lowest price.
Buying an NFT at its minting, hence its creation, is a similar process to participating in an ICO, the initial coin offering, and normally the advantages outweigh the disadvantages: buying NFTs at the "floor price" of his minting, from a collection that has received significant amounts of community interest, can then potentially create further demand for that project's NFTs on the secondary market as well.
However, I must say that the purchase of NFTs at minting is incredibly competitive, so here too we must proceed with caution: the gas fees, the commissions, can be high and there is no guarantee of receiving that NFT.
We have arrived at the last step on my checklist, perhaps the most interesting part: the trading metrics.
Checklist no. 6: trading metrics on the blockchain
After coming to a reasonable conclusion on the roadmap of the artistic team, the project and the community interacting with it, the final element that needs to be addressed are the exchange, trading, metrics of that collection within the blockchain. I cannot stress enough the importance of this point because the metrics within the blockchain allow to effectively determine the relationships between supply and demand within a specific collection and also allow to dynamically quantify the rarity of an NFt from one point. from a macroeconomic point of view as opposed to a purely artistic one.
This method obviously proves to be more effective for those NFT collections that have a significant amount of exchange data on the blockchain, since the only thing we can analyze is the transaction history and the total number of holders.
A tip first of all: once you have found a collection that responds positively to all the checks I have described, you want to check that the number of NFTs in that collection is balanced and proportional to the total supply of assets within the collection. That is, if the total supply in a collection is 10.000 NFTs and there are 5.000 individual owners, we are in a healthy and ideal scenario, as the average supply / holding ratio is two NFTs per holder. However, if there are, for example, 10.000 objects in a collection but they are divided among 500 individual owners, the ratio between offer and average holding is 20 NFT per holder. Mathematically we read a strong imbalance in the relationship between supply and demand.
In this hypothetical scenario, holders with 20 or more NFTs could easily flood the market with selling their pieces, causing the basic auction price for the NFTs in the collection to collapse (floor price). Always keep in mind the laws of supply and demand because they apply to the NFT market perhaps more than anything else. What should we look for then? Look for those collections that tick all the boxes on our checklist that have the lowest possible NFT bid and the highest number of owners and buyers. Taken together, these metrics pretty much describe an ideal low supply and high demand scenario that essentially allows a collection to maintain a relatively stable if not growing base price.
Guys, overall NFTs are magical and fascinating, but there is still so much to learn ... the NFT market as a whole produced several 100x and 200x in 2021 alone, and I'm sure it will continue to deliver on its promises to bring early adopters on the moon. The rapidly growing number of new collections coming out on an almost daily basis makes me think that the market and appetite for NFTs is most likely going to calm down a bit in the near future, but in the meantime if you can locate an NFT very nice that you really want to own .. you will know exactly what to do, what to look for, and what steps to follow.