Imagine spending $91.8 million on a jpg picture. Seems unreal? What you just imagined happens daily in the world of NFTS – digital assets that exist on a blockchain. And blockchain is a “system of recording information in a way that makes it difficult or impossible to change, hack, or cheat the system.”

NFT, short for a non-fungible token, is one of the hottest topics in the digital world, with many fans and haters of this not-so-new invention. 

These digital assets are unique and can hold much value, just like valuable paintings or ancient monuments. 

Despite existing in the world since 2014, NFTs hit the mainstream media just around a year ago, in April 2021, to be exact, right after several high-profile sales and art auctions were held. 

In this blog post, we take a closer look at what NFTs are, what all the hype is about, and reveal some of the most popular NFT projects in the world.

Let’s dive right in.

What are NFTs and why are they so popular right now?

NFTs are “non-fungible tokens.” An NFT is a new type of digital asset that is not fungible, meaning that each token is unique and you cannot substitute it for another. 

For example, imagine a collection of 10 thousand graphics of cute little dinosaurs, like in this CryptoDino collection on the Cardano Blockchain. Each token out of these 10 thousand pieces is unique, meaning there are no two tokens that look the same.

What’s even more interesting is that it’s not just confirmed by how such a token looks – surely anyone could make a copy of a picture or take a screenshot, right? Well, not really.

The data stored on a blockchain, such as a token’s number and the policy ID it is created under, confirms the uniqueness of an NFT. You can think about policy IDs as certificates that prove the authenticity and originality of a piece of art, but in the digital world. NFTs are popular because they provide a way to create unique digital assets that can represent ownership of tangible and digital world assets.

For example, you could create an NFT representing ownership of a house, land, or pair of shoes and then store the tokens on the blockchain, like Ethereum or Cardano. This would create a record of ownership that could not be faked or changed.

Such NFTs might serve various purposes, such as proof of ownership, standalone art pieces, and game characters, as in the case of NFT P2E computer games, which are gaining in popularity reasonably quickly thanks to projects like Axie Infinity

axie infinity
source

How can you use NFTs to your advantage in the real world economy?

NFTs can be used to your advantage in the real world economy by allowing for creating new types of businesses and organizations that were not possible before. 

For example, a company could create a virtual world where users could buy and sell NFTs to each other. 

Alternatively, you could create an organization that uses NFTs as shares, thus allowing for the ownership and management of resources or assets securely. But that’s not everything – NFTs are also used to create digital collectibles representing real-world assets or objects.

NFTs allow you to own, trade, and transparently transfer digital assets. By using NFTs, you can create a decentralized system for exchanging goods and services that is safe, reliable, and efficient. Additionally, NFTs can be used as a tool for marketing and advertising or as a form of payment for goods and services

Ultimately, NFTs have the potential to revolutionize the way we conduct business in the real-world economy.

What industries could benefit from using NFTs, and how could they be used in those industries?

NFTs can be used to your advantage in the real world economy by allowing for creating new types of businesses and organizations that were not possible before. 

Users from various industries can use NFTs. Some of the most prominent applications would be in the art world, the gaming industry, and the collectibles market. 

You can use non-fungible tokens to create and track digital artwork in the art world. You could use them to create unique, irreplaceable virtual items in the gaming industry.

Game developers could use non-fungible tokens to create rare and unique in-game items that players could sell or trade. And in the collectibles market, e.g., card games, you could use them to track rare or one-of-a-kind items.

What are the most popular NFTs in 2022? Top 7 NFT giants right now

Together with the massive rise in the popularity of NFTs from 2021 onwards, there are now hundreds, if not thousands, of NFT projects on various blockchains, like Ethereum, Cardano, and Solana

#1 CryptoPunks

Cryptopunks is an NFT project designed and developed by Matt and John – two creative and talented technologists. The same guys are also behind projects like Meebits or Autoglyps. 

cryptopunks

CryptoPunks is a collection of 10,000 unique characters. The most expensive of them all so far was sold for a whopping $24 million in the Ethereum (ETH) cryptocurrency.

cryptopunk example

If it’s hard to believe – here’s proof. As in any other transaction that takes place on the blockchain, you can check the transaction history of a given asset:

transaction history in blockchain

#2 Bored Ape Yacht Club

Another trendy NFT project is the BAYC project, short for the Bored Ape Yacht Club.

This is another non-fungible token collection on the Ethereum blockchain. The collection includes pictures of apes generated using a unique algorithm. Yuga Labs, its parent company, owns bored Ape Yacht Club. The pre-sale for the project began on April 23, 2021.

This collection is so popular that even celebrities like Snoop Dog or Justin Bieber got their Apes. 

justin bieber's apes

#3 Doodles

Moving on, let’s take a look at this Doodles project. 

doodles
source

With a collection size of 10,000, Doodles are available in various colors, traits, and sizes. These funky creatures like to take on roles or transmogrify into sweet treats. Anyone who owns at least one Doodle can participate in coordinating the Doodles Community Treasury by deciding on the next project’s milestones and decisions. 

People spend thousands of dollars, in ETH naturally, on these collectibles:

#4 CyberKongz

Here’s yet another animal-themed NFT project on the Ethereum blockchain, the CyberKongz.

There are just 5 thousand pieces in this collection and just under 2,500 owners worldwide. The so-called “floor price” meaning the cheapest collectible you can purchase from this collection, is priced at 7.9 ETH, around $2,600. 

animal-themed NFT project

#5 Mekaverse

In less than 0.5 seconds, you’re given over 240 thousand Google results on Mekaverse – a collection of 8,888 Meka in desperate need of Drivers. 

This project was created in August last year and is now one of the top NFT projects on ETH. Unlike other popular projects, this one has a slightly lower entry price for newbies – 0.9 ETH. Over 150,000 in ETH, or almost 400 million dollars, was traded buying and selling Mekas in the last seven days.

#6 Nouns

Another NFT giant is also on the ETH Blockchain – Nouns and their collection of just 222 pieces. This project is less than a year old, and the cheapest art piece you can currently buy is at 81.5 ETH. Nouns are 32×32 pixel avatars based on people, places, and things. Every day, one noun is generated. Some examples of a Nouns NFT are a horse, a taco, and an airplane.

What’s this one about? Well, according to the project creators: 

“Nouns are an experimental attempt to improve the formation of on-chain avatar communities. While projects such as CryptoPunks have attempted to bootstrap digital community and identity, Nouns attempt to bootstrap identity, community, governance, and a treasury that the community can use.”

#7 Decentraland

Have you ever thought about owning virtual land? People who have bought Decentraland certainly like the idea. Decentraland founders’ ambition is to create the world’s largest alternate reality economy on the blockchain, and it looks like they’re going for it. 

This collection is one of those large ones, with over 97.3 items. 

If you look at the sales history, you’ll quickly realize that this is one of the most popular projects right now – people are regularly buying pieces from this project:

This first-ever digital world owned by its users is a revolutionary invention, with more and more people joining this community every day.

How to manually monitor the popularity of NFTs?

One way to monitor the popularity of NFTs is to look at their market capitalization. There are specific websites for this purpose, such as OpenCNFT, CNFTAnalytics, or OpenSea.

Another way is to look at the number of transactions on major exchanges. There are various marketplaces available on which you can track the journey of projects, such as JPG.Store, CNFT.IO, or, again, OpenSea.

A third way is to use a blockchain analytics tool like IntoTheBlock or Blockchain, showing how many addresses hold NFTs and how much value they’re having.

While there is no fool-proof way to monitor the popularity of NFTs manually, some methods of gauging their uptake include checking blockchain explorers and looking at the number of transactions associated with a particular NFT

Additionally, platforms such as Twitter, Reddit, or Discord can provide insights into how popular a given NFT or an NFT project is.

Twitter is so full of NFT communities that the social media giant even launched a feature allowing NFT collectors to display their NFT as a profile picture. It works by linking your wallet, which holds the given asset, and for now, only Twitter Blue members can use it. 

But, monitoring social media manually is tiring, time-consuming, and deficient when gathering all essential data, especially if there are many NFT projects that you’d like to keep an eye on. 

All the ways of monitoring the popularity of an NFT mentioned above can’t gather all of the data you need. Thankfully, there are great solutions for that.

One of them is Determ – a media monitoring and social listening tool perfect for staying up to date with your most important keywords and mentions. 

How can you track NFT popularity with Determ?

There are a few ways to track NFT popularity with Determ – an award-winning media monitoring tool that will do most of the work for you to save loads of time. 

Get ALL online mentions of an NFT, from any location and in any language

You can set up Determ to track the whole web, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Facebook, blogs, forums, YouTube, etc., or all of these together and see all online mentions of an NFT. The set-up process is easy and takes only a few seconds.

Look at the engagement around an NFT, such as the number of likes, shares, or comments it receives

Determ will also keep you updated on the engagement around your favorite NFT projects, including likes, shares, and comments under specific posts. All of that is summarized through timely reports and digests.

Measure the sentiment around an NFT to see how people feel about it

If you’re new to a project and aren’t sure about it, you may want to check out its sentiment. Do people talk positively about it on the Internet? With Determ, you’ll get a sentiment analysis to be sure about your choices. 

For the purposes of this blog, we tracked mentions of some of the most popular NFTs in Determ. Here’s an example of a mention of Cryptopunks on Twitter which has a negative sentiment about crypto in general, as Determ informed us.

When you click on a mention in your Determ feed, you are directed to the original post:

markets insider tweet

That way, you can know what is being said about the industry, a certain NFT, or, in this case, if you work in the crypto industry, you can quickly respond to the negative feedback. Or, you can thank for positive feedback, such as this one on CryptoPunks:

Compare different NFTs

Among many valuable features, Determ also offers competitor analysis. You can track different NFTs and compare mentions, popularity and sentiment, influencers who mention them, and much more between each of your NFTs of interest. 

share of voice - doodles, cyberkongz, bored ape
Example from Determ: share of voice between Doodles, CyberKongz, and Bored Ape Yacht Club.

Using media monitoring tools such as Determ is the best way to help you understand how popular NFT projects are and how they’re resonating with people.

With this data at the palm of your hand, you can make good decisions about which collectibles you should get, and which not. 

Stay up to date with your favorite NFTs 

We hope you enjoyed this insightful article on some of the world’s most popular NFT projects. 

The NFT world is tricky, and new trends and tokens are popping up every day. It’s hard to keep track of everything that is happening in such a fast-growing space. Luckily, with the help of services like Determ, you can quickly get a summary of the most important mentions and news you should be aware of. 

Stay tuned for more – we’ll be sure to review and update this post with new trends in the space. Until then, make sure to give Determ a try by checking its free 7 day trial out and see how it could benefit you.