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Innovation

Eight tips on how SMEs can utilise cryptocurrency and NFTs for business growth

In part one of this series, Digital Innovation Advisor, Ieva Caulfield, briefly explained what cryptocurrency and NFTs are and their importance for businesses. In part two, Ieva highlights her eight tips on how SMEs can take advantage of cryptocurrency and NFTs.

There is still little understanding in the UK of cryptocurrency and NFTs and how to utilise them effectively for SMEs. Currently, over 30% of Millennials in the USA use NFTs. The digital world is growing and having an online presence has become a status and way of life for many. Fiverr, a global freelancer platform saw a 900% increase in 2022 in searches for individuals with NFT skills.

There is an enormous opportunity for small businesses within the UK to start utilising cryptocurrencies and NFTs. However, where should you start?

 

Eight tips on how you can get started

Sell NFTs using tangible incentives. For example, if you just opened a new café, if you sell an NFT ticket to the opening party, you could offer a free slice of cake or coffee for the first 20 people that purchased or a free light bite for five lucky clients. 

Use this as a marketing opportunity. You could sell some content, pictures or video with your branding on the items in exchange for a free consultation session. This is an excellent way to integrate NFTs with cryptocurrency - you could take cryptocurrency as a way of payment for NFTs.

Make it clear on your website that certain items or services could be bought using cryptocurrency. Do a test on your website for one product for a limited time. Using cryptocurrency reduces transaction fees and allows international buyers to purchase your products or services. To store them, a business needs to open a digital wallet. Look into the PayPal offer.

When selling NFTs, include 5%-10% of re-sale proceedings that would go to your business.

Link your physical products to NFTs. Earlier this year, I went to Harry Potter world and had an official photo taken as a souvenir. I then paid for the picture to be used on a physical poster as well as a digital copy online. When selling your items, you can offer a digital copy or certificate of the authentication, which also helps build trust in your brand.

Share your knowledge. Every small business owner has gone through many positive and challenging experiences while growing a business. You can share your experiences on social media with a link to purchase an NFT for a small price to a more detailed blog or video. This especially works for businesses that sell online courses and training. Those who have purchased the NFT can access the full content.

The use of NFTs and cryptocurrency attracts investors. Make sure you have a unique digital stamp for your business. This way, you can build loyalty with customers and a reward system using NFTs and cryptocurrency. Investors find these companies more attractive to fund.

You can utilise NFTs and cryptocurrency on the Metaverse, depending on your industry. You can host an event and set up a store selling clothes for avatars or advertise your brand. (More information on the Metaverse for SMEs can be found in a previous blog).

Cybersecurity must always be considered in discussions about NFTs and cryptocurrencies since they are not as protected as traditional financial and trading options. There is a potential risk since cryptocurrencies cannot be insured. That said, companies and governments worldwide are working on the security and regulations of blockchains so that more small businesses and consumers can implement them without a threat of monetary loss. 

Conclusion

The popularity of cryptocurrencies is increasing. Recently, it has been speculated that NFTs are in decline. However, that is not the case. Both markets are still expanding rapidly and are used more widely by consumers and SMEs across the globe.

There has been a consumer shift, especially among millennials and younger generations. Therefore, it is important to understand the value and adapt your business for the future to maximise potential and growth.

Understanding and adapting cryptocurrency and NFTs for small businesses will take time. It's important to consider costs, contingency, and how this benefits brand and overall business strategy. Otherwise, this could become a costly trial with no return on investment.

We do not see many small businesses using Cryptocurrencies and NFTs across Greater Manchester. Hopefully, this blog inspired you to consider adopting into your business strategy.

If you want to find out more about support for your business on Crypto, NFTs, digital innovation, transformation, or overall digital strategy, get in touch with the GC Business Growth Hub Digital Innovation team.

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Ieva Caulfield

Ieva Caulfield, Digital Innovation Advisor

Ieva is a Digital Innovation Advisor at GC Business Growth Hub. She's an experienced consultant, business advisor, developer, data engineer and senior analyst with a background in digital innovation, transformation, data solutions, BI development and analytics for large tech, retail, financial organisations and various SMEs.

As an advisor, she provides specialist digital guidance to businesses, ensuring they have a clear digital growth plan to uptake and implement digital technologies.

In previous roles, she's gained experience in machine learning, creating new tools, automation, advising and analysing an organisation's trading, performance and spotting new opportunities. Ieva's had exposure to managing small projects and providing leadership to peers. Her background has been in advanced SAS (VA, DI Studio, EG), Power BI, Hadoop, Impala and Teradata SQL, and is skilful in data development, engineering, analytics and reporting.