Spill the NF Tea ☕
But don’t let it burn you. Just ask Chevy. They managed to receive zero bidders on their first NFT and they were even throwing in a *2023 Minted Green Corvette Z06* for good measure. Talk about a blow to the ol’ ego. Even worse? The beneficiary of the “sale” was supposed to be the education nonprofit DonorsChoose. Do we really have another “Scott’s Tots” situation on our hands?
To be fair, the markets are not doing the auto industry behemoth any favors. The cryptocurrency Ethereum (no, not a character from Lord of the Rings–I checked) used to purchase most NFTs tanked 64% since April 1. Even popular NFTs have seen their floor prices take a plunge more than 70%. Let that steep for a minute.
Critics and critiques aside, if you’re anything like me, you’re still trying to wrap your mind around NFTs. For what it’s worth, here’s the TL;DR version of what I’m noticing: NFTs are more than digital deeds, they are gateways to building highly engaged communities and loyalty around brands (memberships, tickets, and probably something new that will blow all our minds).
In Chevy’s case, embarrassment as collateral damage isn’t the end of the world. These early setbacks are a big opportunity for brands to learn and adapt. Tech giants like Reddit, Twitter, Facebook, Spotify, and most recently Gamestop have already dipped their toes in the choppy digital waters. Sink or swim, #NFTSummer is here, y’all.
Elon Musk’s relationship with Twitter? It’s Complicated
Drama, drama, drama. The world’s richest man is at it again, this time dusting off one of the oldest tricks in the book: dumping someone before they can dump you.
Musk fired off the break-up tweet on his favorite social media site he doesn’t want anymore, effectively trying to meme himself out of the $44 billion deal. The owner of SpaceX, the CEO of Tesla, and the largest individual shareholder of Twitter cited issues with Twitter’s disclosure of data on spam bots and fake accounts. Twitter has said repeatedly that less than 5% of users are in this category, but Musk contends that the company is misleading the public.
The relationship has been on the rocks for a while. Issues of free speech, the privatization of the platform, and personal tiffs with Twitter executives have turned out to be quite the emotional rollercoaster. And it’s far from over. This week, Twitter sued and Musk faces an uphill legal battle and a hefty $1 billion break-up fee.
Is it too late to apologize? Maybe. But for now, I’ll be relying on the newest season of The Bachelorette for all the latest relationship tips.
Uber is driving off the deep end
Hold onto your seats, kids. Uber’s brand perception is at an all-time low. I know, surprise surprise. But what is it this time?
An explosive report based on a cache of 124,000 of Uber’s confidential documents found that “the tech giant flouted laws, duped police, exploited violence against drivers and secretly lobbied governments during its aggressive global expansion.” Like I said, nothing to write home about.
The documents also explain Uber’s soaring ride prices. The company harnessed massive amounts of venture capital to bankroll heavily subsidizing journeys, offer deals and incentives to drivers, and employ unsustainable pricing models. The endgame? To get riders hooked on Uber’s convenience factor so they would keep paying after the inevitable price hike. Yikes.
With losses upward of $30 billion since 2016 and scandals galore, it’ll be interesting to see how Uber attempts to build back trust and create the emotional connection with consumers that has become the lifeblood of today’s top-performing brands.
The only good thing about Uber’s rock bottom moment is there’s (hopefully) nowhere to go but up.
Best of the Week
We all know marketing can be a bit of a brain teaser. So here’s some handy tips on cognitive biases and how to harness them to upgrade your brand communications + build emotional connections with clients. Science saves the day again!
What to watch
Thor, Better Call Saul, and The Bachelorette you know, that classic trio? Well they’re all back to lift all of us out of our post-Stranger Things depression. I’m telling you guys–action, lawyers, and a little love is all we need.
Stats to see
When it comes to product reviews, less is not more for Gen Z. One study found that 92% of this crowd will not buy a product without reviews. Volume is a big deal, but so is recency. If your reviews are stale, the youths will bail.
Presenting Guilty. (Not the Uber dark kind–the treat yo’self kind.) These are all the songs you hate to love, but can’t get enough of. So go ahead and indulge, your secret’s safe with us.
More News from the Week.
- Take the money and run. A worker in Chile who was mistakenly paid 330x his normal salary resigns from his position, mysteriously vanishes, and hasn’t been heard from since.
- Texas is literally too hot to handle, please send help (and slurpees). Somehow the extreme weather is still surprising ERCOT, who claimed that the company didn’t think the summer would get as hot as it actually is. I would respectfully ask, “Do you even live here?”
- Space says cheese! NASA releases cosmically cool pics and now all of us at the office are changing our backgrounds and contemplating our existence with a little help from Death Cab for Cutie.
- Très magnifique! Meta’s ambition to build a universal translator continues with the creation of a single AI model capable of translating across 200 languages. Here’s hoping for more connection, access, and fewer dad jokes being lost in translation.
- Guys, this is nuts. A billion pounds of California almonds are stranded at ports and the brutal state-wide drought isn’t helping. Does this mean a jar of almond butter will start costing less than filet mignon? Here’s to spreading a bit of Almond Joy (for some of us) while it lasts.