Token Gated Events: NFTs And Being On The Cutting Edge Of Ticketing And Branding

As an event promoter, surely you’ve faced innumerable challenges when it comes to ticket sales and security, such as high fees, ticket scalping, and ticket-fraud-induced damage to your brand. As recent as last year, we’ve seen event owners use token gating for a more secure and streamlined ticketing experience. Given that it’s an emerging market, there aren’t that many resources about token gated events. We’re here to lay it out for you.

Token gating ensures only validated buyers can access events. We’ve seen it with Afterparty, the world’s first NFT-gated music event that was headlined by The Chainsmokers and featured 25+ supporting acts and 12+ reknowned NFT artists. They used the generative Utopian NFT collection that doubled as digital art as well as an all-access pass. There were just 1500 of these NFTs available that acted as smart tickets, each unique, and every single one of which were live-minted, and they now remain on the Ethereum blockchain forever. Security’s not all; we’ve seen promoters also offer certain benefits to holders of NFTs (Non Fungible Tokens) or any other type of tokens. Last year, VeeFriends creator Gary Veynerchuk airdropped NFT tickets to the very first VeeCon conference event, to every VeeFriends Series 1 holder.

For the uninitiated, we have a section on the basics of token gated events later on in this article. But first, we’re going to look at how token gating can ameliorate your event, how you can set one up, as well as ways to leverage it so you can offer your audience the most immersive event experience. In this article, we’ll also cover the best practices and protocol we swear by, when setting up and hosting token gated events.

3 Top Benefits of Token Gating

As event promoters, it isn’t news that exclusivity and security are two things everyone looks for – the audience craves unique experiences, and certainly does not want to be scammed when purchasing tickets, or even unfairly have to pay higher prices as a result of scalping; the creators and performers obviously care about associating with trusted brands, and so the aspect of secure-ticketing becomes crucial for them as well. The good news is, you as event creators and promoters are chasing the same goal, and token gating serves event promotors as much as it does creators and token holders – the event-goers.

Let’s take a look at a few specific ways that event promoters can benefit from getting into token gated events:

  1. Take full control of ticketing with improved security:

The most obvious benefit of token gated events and NFT-verified tickets is better security. Although token gating isn’t completely removed from the risks of cyber attacks, it is more developed to stand against them and reduce the risk of fraud. The use of token gated events and NFTs enables you as an event promoter to ensure the authenticity of tickets, minimizing the risk of counterfeiting and scalping. As this superior web3 model requires event-goers to have a token or tokenized asset in order to gain access, promoters can ensure only those with the required credentials are able to attend. Token-gated events verify specific token holders through layers of security and will always prompt a two-step verification process to protect both event organizers and token holders from being hacked.

  1. Lower your ticket distribution costs:

Complete control of distribution means less middlemen and consecutively, lower costs. By virtue of these tickets being digital, there is the additional cost of designing and printing that’s saved as well. Additionally, token gated events prevent scalpers from buying up all the tickets and reselling them at unfair demand-based prices. This makes token gated events an attractive option for event promoters looking for more efficient ticketing systems.

  1. Turbo-charge your marketing efforts:

With web3 soon becoming the norm, you should even start to view token gating at as an effective marketing strategy in and of itself. Token-gating and NFTs open up a multitude of marketing and branding opportunities. But, let’s delve deeper into that in the next section.

  1. Leverage data to tailor your content, marketing, and sales strategies:

The nature of this kind of ticketing is that you have access to each ticket buyer and their data. This information can be used to gain valuable insights into customer behavior and preferences which can help inform your unique marketing strategy.

In addition to this, you can also use Ticket Fairy’s data profiling tools to better understand your audience to better plan your event.

Token-gating as a Marketing Strategy

  1. Establish a distinguished brand image and build a stronger presence:

Brands, especially by being early-adopters of new technology and models, automatically gain an edge over competitors, as they’re seen as fast-evolving and nimble. And who doesn’t like to be associated with such brands! Transitioning into web3 marketing is the quickest way to entice your audience and show them you’re ahead of the curve. As the crypto space is still relatively small and growing, this is a good time to opt-in and quickly establish and strengthen your brand presence in this space.

  1. Leverage this metaverse solution for community-building:

Token-gated events are a fun way for promoters to reward their NFT holders through exclusive access to content, tickets, clubs, events, and other benefits. NFTs can also be used to create collectible items which can be bought and sold among fans to further engage and grow the community. Ultimately, the point of token gated events is to provide value for NFT communities where they are able to develop relationships with other token holders. As promoters, you would know how critical community building is to establishing and strengthening brand loyalty. Token-gated events play an integral role in providing a space for that to happen organically, especially since the NFT community is relatively smaller and still growing by increments.

  1. Reward them with exclusivity: 

The audience is always looking for unique experiences. Tokenization helps add that extra layer of exclusivity as token holders gain access to specific content, experiences or merch that non-token-holders would not have access to. Danny Cole’s NFT collectible Creature World that was released in 2021, offered NFT holders exclusive access to a limited and customized Creature World varsity jacket. In this instance, the exclusivity of limited merch appeals to the audience while also engaging them with your brand.

  1. NFT-enable your loyalty benefits:

Holders of certain tokens may be eligible to get exclusive access to special content, events, as well as merch. This will help keep them constantly engaged with your brand and event, encouraging them to keep engaging further and advocate for your event. Take cue from music artist Cole Michael Bennett’s Lyrical Lemonade. In the summer of 2022, the  multimedia company’s tech subsidiary, L3mon, dropped The Carton NFT collection which gave their NFT holders three years of access to Lyrical Lemonade’s Summer Smash festival. With only 500 airdropped tickets available, the event caused a buzz of excitment and was so successful with NFT holders that the event will conitinue in the summers of 2023 and 2024.

Token Gating in Action

Ticket Fairy has been on the cutting edge, debuting this feature in 2021. Ticket Fairy debuted the NFT feature in 2021 as we teamed up with renowned label Monstercat and NFT marketplace, at the annual NFT.NYC’s Universal Poetry event.

Steps to Create a Token-gated Event

Creating a token gated event is simple and not very different from its web2 counterpart. The only aspect to be present to is that it is crucial to set up a secure system where members can have access to tickets and other content by verifying NFT ownership.

Here are the key steps in creating a secure token gated event:

  1. Create the NFTs that will be used to verify ticket ownership:

Blockchain technology ensures that the NFT ticketing process will be secure and verified. These tokens should be stored securely and backed up regularly to avoid any mishaps and issues with cybersecurity.

  1. Develop the verification process that will be used to verify NFT ownership:

One unique aspect of token gated events is that it offers multiple layers of authentication by verifying that a particular user holds a particular NFT. This process provides a secure and reliable way that protects members from cyberattacks such as ticket fraud and hackings. Members and users would most likely link their digital or crypto wallets to gain access to token gated benefits. From within the wallet itself, the NFT tokens are verified and approved, giving members access to exclusive tickets, merchandise, events, and more.

  1. Create the token gated event page and launch it:

You want to get the word out about your token gated event so creating an event page for it is an effective way to get accurate information out to your members in addition to promoting it. Concentrate on ways to make your event page look attractive and appealing as well as accessible. Go with specific colors or thematic elements that tie in with your event. The most important part is adding the token gate. You might consider creating unique access to the page for token holders only to create exclusivity. Now, your token gated event page is ready for launch.

The Ticket Fairy makes creating events and setting up ticketing hassle-free. Simply create an event with The Ticket Fairy, include all of the necessary information regarding the event, then enable ‘Require ownership of NFTs to attend’ under Event Settings, and . . .

Step 1: Paste the collection address.

Screenshot of Ticket Fairy's token-gate set-up for creating token gated events

Step 2: Publish your event.

Screenshot of Ticket Fairy's token-gate set up to promote token gated events

Step 3: Sit back and relax, because your NFT-gated event is now live!

Best Practices for Token-gated Events

Token-gating runs on the public blockchain, and by virtue of the technology it is built on, it is secure. Relatively, so to speak. But, tokenization is merely the tip of the iceberg; there’s more to do, if you truly want to ensure robust security. To protect your members and their transactions, and building a platform to support their needs, you want to:

  1. Ensure your system is secure and all data is encrypted:

It is always best to double or triple-check your links and access before going live. Security is the number one issue when it comes to advanced technology such as NFTs and token gating. It should be your number-one priority because a secure and protected token gating experience affects the overall member experience. Ultimately, security will influence the way your event will develop and grow.

  1. Utilize secure authentication methods:

NFT tokens are verified through a member’s or user’s digital wallet. From there, multiple layers of authentication are processed in order to verify and approve a member’s token. On your end as an organizer, you want to ensure that access to your token gate is secure and protected. The best way to do so is by developing protection around your website that only NFT holders have access to. Make sure your software and tech support create secure methods for NFT holders to access your page.

  1. Provide customer support:

Technology is tricky so you want to support token holders in every way that you can. In addition to clear and accessible instructions on your website, you want to provide customer and member support that is ready to answer any questions, resolve any issues, and connect them with the support team that they need. Additionally, you want to make sure to provide comprehensive customer support and clear instructions for customers who may have difficulty using the system. This will help to ensure that customers have a positive experience with your token gated event.

[For the uninitiated] Token-gated events explained

The event industry’s foray into the crypto space is constantly evolving and token gated events are helping event promoters create exclusive and valuable experiences for their attendees. Token-gated events might be a new concept for many people, but the most important thing is that they are intrinsically tied to NFTs and other tokens by providing NFT holders unique and exclusive access to content such as tickets, merchandise, software, clubs, events, and more. Think of token gating as the more secure, web3 equivalent to a special subscription or membership to a media outlet. It rewards token holders through exclusive perks and promos that can only be accessed if members hold a particular NFT.

Access to token gated events is a relatively simple process that begins with a member’s digital wallet. Members are able to sign in or connect to the token gated events to provide their proof of ownership of a particular NFT. Then, members have access to all the perks and benefits that promoters and organizers offer. However, token gating goes beyond providing an exclusive benefit or perk for particular NFT holders. It’s a unique and seamless way to build community among enthusiasts and bring value to their NFT ownership as we’ve seen with VeeFriends and L3mon.

As event promoters, you take pride in providing immersive experiences for your audiences and token gating events only augment that experience for them. Staying on the pulse on what is new, and engaging your audience with it will transform the way they view your events and brand, and help you garner their interest and loyalty to what you offer to them.

To learn more about token gated events, and having one yourself . . .

Book a Demo Call

Create an Event

Spread the word