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In a world where digital interactions are becoming increasingly prevalent, it’s no surprise that the concept of digital ownership is rapidly gaining traction. From non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to digital twin technology, companies are finding new ways to authenticate their products, build stronger relationships with consumers, and create new revenue streams.
One of the most exciting developments in the world of digital ownership is the use of NFTs to connect real-world products with digital replicas. This not only serves to authenticate the product, but it also acts as a gateway to exclusive experiences and rewards for the most dedicated fans. Take luxury fashion brand Prada, for example. In 2022, they introduced their first standalone NFT project, a collection of limited-edition physical T-shirts that came with a matching NFT twin. Not only did this authenticate the product, but it also granted buyers access to an exclusive discord server where they could congregate with other NFT holders, and even win trips to Milan and Miami to attend Prada events.
Another area where digital ownership is making waves is in the realm of digital twin technology. This technology allows companies to create virtual replicas of their physical spaces, inventory, and even employees, giving them the ability to test out new layouts and strategies before implementing them in the real world. Retail giant Lowe’s, for instance, has leveraged NVIDIA's Omniverse technology to create a digital twin of their stores, giving associates the ability to visualize and interact with nearly all of a store's digital data, and optimize operations to better serve customer needs.
But it’s not just retailers who are benefiting from digital ownership technology. Even small businesses are getting in on the action. Take Cha Cha Matcha, a matcha chain with stores in New York and Los Angeles, who rolled out its first loyalty program, which is based on NFT technology. Members will be able to earn special perks upon purchasing a product, including NFTs which will live in a custodial crypto wallet. This innovative approach to loyalty programs allows for a more seamless and secure way for customers to track and redeem their rewards. The interoperable nature of NFTs also allows for coordination with partner brands, opening up new possibilities for cross-promotion and collaboration.
Another exciting application of NFTs is in the fashion industry. Digital fashion start-up Myava has created a digital fitting room, allowing shoppers to take the guesswork out of online shopping. After building an avatar using their personal specifications and measurements, shoppers can try on digital versions of clothes from partner retailers to understand the fit and receive sizing recommendations. All digital products are linked to the retailer’s product page, where shoppers can then purchase the physical product.
Digital twin technology is also becoming increasingly popular in retail. This technology is being leveraged to design physical spaces, plan for inventory levels and test product drops, and improve employee capabilities. Retailers are also using the technology to model merchandising strategies, identify new fulfillment opportunities, and optimize business operations, evaluating complete models before they make lasting changes. It’s also playing a critical role for omnichannel retailers – understanding where gaps in fulfillment capabilities exist and shifting to address them.
One example of a retailer utilizing digital twin technology is fashion brand and retailer Guess. They deployed Matterport Inc. technology and saw a 200% boost in employee productivity and a 30% drop in travel costs. Visual merchandising teams frequently reimagine its brick-and-mortar experience. To ensure brand consistency across stores, the retailer configures new layouts and displays in a mock store at its corporate headquarters. Guess captures a digital twin of its sample space with a Matterport camera and then shares it with store managers globally to replicate in-person.
As we've seen, digital ownership and identity are rapidly changing the way brands and retailers connect with consumers. From the use of non-fungible tokens to authenticate products and grant access to exclusive experiences and rewards, to the implementation of digital twin technology to optimize inventory and improve the customer experience, companies are finding new ways to connect with their audience and create new revenue streams. The benefits of digital ownership and identity are clear, and we can expect to see more brands and retailers exploring these opportunities in the coming years.
To learn more about the latest trends and strategies in digital ownership and identity, be sure to visit PSFK.com and download the team's latest report on the topic. With in-depth analysis and real-world examples, this report is a must-read for any brand or retailer looking to stay ahead of the curve and innovate their customer experience.