By now, you’ve heard about the profile picture, or PFP NFTs, that have been taking over Twitter and other social media. Since early this year we have written about this arising trend, and with nearly 100k reads across our content, we can say it’s one of the most popular topics we publish. Even tho the majority of our content is about free crypto giveaways. Our audience is drawn into the mystery surrounding these valuable digital avatars.
Aren’t they basically just JPEGs you can right-click save?
As always, we’re here to help crypto enthusiasts and veterans navigate this rapidly developing industry. So today, you get an extensive guide on PFP NFTs, from A to Z, so to speak. We hope this answers all questions and clears up the doubts you might have about the value and future of PFP NFTs.
The first NFT collection that started the PFP trend is the Crypto Punks. Owners of a Punk put up their precious NFT that only contained a few pixels up as their avatar on Twitter. While in the meantime creating a pseudonymous identity online. A digital identity, without your real face, and sometimes without your real name. But under which you can freely post your opinion and engage in conversations online.
While this is great and all, can’t people just save your image and use it as their Twitter profile pic?
Well yes, they can. But since NFTs are on the blockchain, it’s easy to prove who is the original owner.
Moreover, Twitter developers announced that they are working on a verification tool, so Twitter can verify ownership of the NFT. The owner will get a small Ethereum logo on their PFP, similar to the blue checkmark icon that influencers have.
This way, everyone can spot with the naked eye if the social media account truly owns the NFT.
Just take a second, and imagine how many people see your Lambo or Hublot watch per month? A few hundred, maybe a thousand? A relatively active Twitter account gets hundreds of thousands or even millions of impressions per month. This small feature on Twitter will take digital flexing to a whole new level.
This is the hype word of Q4 2021. But why?
The Metaverse is a digital world that reflects a normal life. With blockchain technology and NFTs, it’s now possible to integrate ownership and gamification, through the Play-to-Earn mechanism, into digital life.
This might sound a bit futuristic. However, it will be a reality sooner than you might think. It’s actually around the corner. One of the biggest companies in the world is pivoting completely towards this brand new digital world. Can you guess it?
Drum rolls…. Facebook. They even changed their name to Meta, to rebrand entirely towards the Metaverse world.
Personally, I hope the Metaverse of choice will be a decentralized one. Right now, investors are betting on several ones by buying up digital land in Decentraland, Sandbox, and other Metaverses.
These digital lands boxes are NFTs, and PFP NFTs will be your avatar that you walk around within the Metaverse. So pick your team wisely.
PFP NFTs Investing & Trading
Did you see one Crypto Punk got sold for 2500 ETH, or $10,000,000 this month?
Here’s the trading history on Punk #4156:
The last owner purchased it for $1 million to resell it for 10x later that same year. I don’t know if he bought it, planning to hold it long-term. Or if he planned to trade it for much higher that same year. All we know is that this specific NFT got sold for at least 10x higher by every owner since 2017.
There have been several collections and NFT investors who made millions flipping their NFTs. That’s why we noticed a sort of gold-rush into many PFP NFTs, hoping to catch the next Crypto Punk or Bored Ape (BAYC).
Unsurprisingly, this created a whole new economy in which the NFT community smelled the opportunity of trading PFP NFTs.
It’s not for everyone, there are some things to consider. Like, are you minting NFTs or looking for the next pump? Are you going for a quick flip, or holding for a few a year-ish like the Punk above? Are you going for a floor one or are you sniping a rare edition within a 10k PFP collection? DYOR and don’t FOMO into something a random NFT influencer tells you to do.
Before you jump into it, learn the industry language. Find a project you like, or maybe even join a DAO or NFT fund that holds the biggest NFTs in their portfolio. The latter will surely save you time, work, and gas fees.
At Airdrop Alert, we’ve been building communities for crypto companies since 2017. Needless to say, we got our eye on strong communities growing across the industry.
Since early this year, NFT art blew up, which created a community of art and NFT lovers. Artists like Beeple, Pak, and Trevor Jones paved the way and collectors started voicing and sharing their opinions on social media like Twitter and Discord.
Today, we see sub-communities supporting individual PFP NFT collections. These communities support and engage with each other on social media. It reminds me of the old gaming forums where you just came to chill and have fun. Before the days of whats-app or even before MSN. If you hop into a discord of a project like Lazy Lions, you can find regular people just enjoying chatting. They tell each other good morning or share stories of their day. While in the meantime, helping people who have questions about the PFP NFTs they own or general blockchain questions like how to set up your wallet.
It’s a world of difference, and a breath of fresh air if you compare it to a random ICO community or shitcoin, in which the most common question is “wen moon ser”.
Believe it or not, communities are important. This is what creates the holders vs the speculators who are in it for a quick buck. With the world in lockdown, and people being isolated in their homes without many social interactions. It’s can’t come as a surprise that people found their human connection digitally. Buying a PFP NFT is similar to a club membership fee in that sense. Once you own the NFT, you’re part of the gang.
Party on Bruh
The BAYC, and other communities, also organize events you can join if you are part of the club. In November the Bored Apes threw a bunch of parties in New York that went viral.
And of course, people are eagerly waiting on the Metaverse parties that are on many collectible roadmaps.
Celebs and Their PFP NFTs
The rising hype of PFP NFTs caught the attention of high-profile celebrities as well. Just to name drop a few of my favorites:
- Jay-Z (Crypto Punk)
- Prince Royce (Lazy Lion, Doodles)
- Mike Tyson (Cool cat)
- Ashton Kutcher (Stoner Cats)
- Jake Paul (Lazy Lion)
- Jordan Belfort (Crypto Punk, BAYC)
- Snoop Dogg (Has too many to list)
These are just a few of a long list of celebs who are joining the clubs of PFP NFTs. Now take a second and imagine your favorite artist owning a Mutant Ape, while you own one too. He hops into the discord and now you have an actual conversation with him. Or you have your Mutant as your PFP and this celeb likes your tweet, just because you’re part of the same club. Isn’t that kinda nice?
They don’t only add to the hype of the collection, it’s valuable to have them in your circle of online frens.
The same goes for companies and brands joining the party. Visa, Pepsi, Arizona Ice Tea and our humble company Airdrop Alert, all put PFP NFTs on our balance sheets. One reason is to join the community, another side effect is marketing exposure as these communities welcome you with a ton of social media engagement. And lastly, but I can only speak for ourselves here. I rather have an NFT on my balance sheet than fiat.
Earning with NFTs
There are more ways to Earn with NFTs than simply trading them. I mean, not everyone can splurge ETH into speculative projects and hope for the best, right?
You don’t need a single dollar to join NFT airdrops and we list a few of those each week. Furthermore, you can stake them. Play NFT games that have Play to Earn mechanism in it. Or if you’re creative you can mint your own NFTs and sell them on Opensea or other marketplaces.
Recently, several PFP NFTs teams created their own token which people can earn through staking. With these tokens, you can do cool things like breed new NFTs or have voting rights in a DAO. It’s a new utility brought to projects to create more value for holders in the long run.
If you aren’t afraid to try out new things, this world is full of opportunities. Of course, there are always risks involved. So make sure to stay safe and avoid scams.
PFP NFTs Categories
Now that you understand what PFP NFTs is all about you need to find out what kind of profile picture you identify with. What’s popular in the NFT community, or what is considered valuable in the space?
Let’s start by categorizing them and I’ll forward you to several blogs that have 5-10 projects in them for that category. Make sure to pick something you actually like, instead of solely going for monetary gains.
How do you want to represent yourself in the Metaverse?
1] Pixel art
The Crypto Punks is a unique collection of 10,000 pixelated art images with 24×24, 8-bit resolution. it was the very first PFP NFTs, started back in 2017. It kind of reminds me of the first images on the internet, which loaded pixel by pixel. This was the first collection, with the highest sales volume to date. It doesn’t come as a surprise that other NFT collections used the same style.
Here’s a list of the 5 most popular ones, including CryptoToadz and CyberKongz
By far the most popular category of PFP NFTS are animal-type ones. Everyone has a favorite animal, so it’s easy to relate to these images. In fact, it’s so popular it couldn’t be covered in just one article.
In this list, you can find 11 different animal PFP NFTs in different price ranges, including Pudgy Penguins and SupDucks.
This whole animal craze started with The Bored Ape Yacht Club taking over the scene last summer. Therefore, we created a list of the 8 most popular Ape PFP NFTS, just in case you don’t have 50 ETH to spend on a BAYC. Besides the obvious apes, you can find Gambling Apes and Galactic Apes there.
Right after Apes, you can find dogs as popular PFP NFTs on Twitter. I mean, who doesn’t like dogs? In this list, you find The Dog Pound, the Bored Kennel Club amongst the 6 best dogs PFP NFTs.
Last but not least, let’s not forget about cats. One of the first trending projects in the summer was Cool Cats, and after that much more cat-like PFP NFTs emerged. However, the first cat NFTs were actually minted in 2017, when the CryptoKitties congested the ETH network. This recent blog has lucky number 7 of the biggest Cat NFTs.
This category is very popular amongst beginners but isn’t always the best investment. Sometimes they go (temporarily) up in value, but the hype can die quickly. However, some of them stick around and slowly build their own community and become a true derivate project that stands on their own.
A derivative NFT is one of which the core of the NFT is based on a project, with a slight twist. It can be just a small twist or a combination of 2 projects.
For example, the fast-food punks are the same as Crypto Punks, but they all have fast-food-related brand hats on them. Or most recently, the Crypto Phunks is an exact copy of the original Punks, only the look left instead of looking right. That one feels borderline illegal, but it still caught the attention of serious NFT collectors.
On the other hand, The Society of Derivative Apes is a combination between BAYC and Doodles. While the CreatureToadz is a mix between Creature World NFT and CreatureToadz. You get the gist.
Hype & Sell
In the last few weeks a new trend was born, quite literally. “Baby” type derivatives. The new PFP NFTs series started that we’re baby version of popular ones. The Lil Baby Ape Club started the trend, which was quickly copied by many others like baby punks, baby lions and baby mutants. And the list goes on. Some savvy traders loaded their bags and sold for profit, while others lost their ETH in rug pulls.
There are many types of derivatives, from 10k PFP NFTs to stand-alone ones. Here’s one example of a stand-alone (or actually, 6 different ones were made but all of them are 1/1’s) cosplay of a Crypto Punk dressed up as a Bored Ape.
Where to Buy & Trade PFP NFTS
Where do NFT traders spend their billions of USD per month on NFTs?
Well, since it’s a new industry. There isn’t a “winner takes all” situation just yet. Actually, there are several contestants in the race to become the biggest and best NFT platform.
Nifty Gateway came out of the gates strongly in late 2020, but since the PFP NFTs took over Opensea has been the platform with the most volume. Altho, users have been complaining about the many bugs on Opensea lately. This is where platforms like Niftify jump in, with a better user experience and lower gas fees for trading.
Not to pick any favorites, here’s a list of links to platforms to buy & sell PFP NFTs:
Coinbase NFT Marketplace
To everyone’s surprise, one of the biggest Crypto Exchanges: Coinbase, announced a few weeks ago they will enter the NFT scene with their own marketplace. This was widely met with enthusiasm from the community, as Coinbase has over 60 Million registered crypto users. While Opensea currently does billions of volume per month with approximately 500k active users per month. One could speculate a huge influx of NFT buyers is coming soon.
You can pre-join the long waitlist of Coinbase NFT marketplace, which is expected to go live in Q1 of 2022. Click here to join the waitlist.
The Other Blockchains
While most of the popular PFP NFTs are on Ethereum, not every crypto user enjoys the high gas fees. Therefore, they look for other blockchains which allow for lower transaction costs, which subsequently allows room for lower purchase cost NFTs. This doesn’t mean all these projects are shit. On the contrary, one of the best-known PFP NFTs is the Degen Ape Academy on Solana.
On the other hand, NFTs on Tron and Cardano are gaining traction. Not only with copy-cat projects like the Tron BAYC. But original collectibles like SpaceBudz are growing their own community and adding value to the space.
Polygon is popular as a Layer-Two solution on Ethereum and has gas fees that are pretty much neglectable. They are creating partnerships across the industry with NFT platforms like Niftify. Several NFT collections are launched on Polygon and sent to Ethereum wallets, often but not exclusively as airdrops.
Finally, Tezos has entered the NFT space with a huge partnership with Pepsi who is dropping a collection called “the mic drop”
As you can see, there’s enough choice across different blockchains to collect NFTs.
My Top 3 PFP NFTS of Today
If you made it this far, you might be curious what my personal favorite NFTs. Or what we often hear in crypto is “which coin should I buy”, which translates to “which NFT do I get?” in this world.
It’s easy to say Punks right now, but I realize almost none of my readers will be able to spend that kind of money. So here’s my top 3 of PFP NFTS that are at a lower price range. This is in no way financial advice, and I own all of them myself.
1] Lazy Lions
Easy to spot our Profile Picture is a Lazy Lion. So obvious is the top of our list. We love the lions for their community and their Roars. It’s one of the most active and embracing communities in the space. On top of that here are a few highlights and stats as numbers don’t lie:
- 150K Discord Members
- 4900 Unique Wallets
- Roarwards Program (Monthly $ETH Payout)
- Confirmed Coinbase Partnership
- Merch Drop before NewYear
- 60K Twitter Followers
- 20K ETH Volume Traded
2] Sappy Seals
Ever since the Sappy Seals entered the scene they have been Arfing all over Twitter. It’s a very happy and fun-loving community famous for their hilarious memes. Like I emphasized above, I find it highly important that the community is welcoming. When I want to forget about real-life struggles, I go to the Sappy Seals discord and have fun.
In my humble opinion, it’s a highly undervalued project with a floor below 0.3 ETH.
Check out their website for more info on staking for $PIXL token and the game that is coming soon.
3] Sneaky Vampires
From the artist who created BAYC, these Sneaky Vampires are very well designed. Their mint sold out very quickly and the floor price surged over 2.5 ETH. For a while, it seemed like they would never look back and would keep going up. However, after the summer NFT hype cooled down a bit, so did the vamps.
Right now you can pick one up for 0.6 ETH. It could be the right timing, as you can stake your vamps for $BLOOD tokens and companions might be airdropped soon. Have a look at their roadmap for a sneak peek.
Getting Started With PFP NFTs
To get started, you just need 3 things right now. Once you get more involved and want to diversify on blockchains or platforms you can circle back to our content and find all you need. We’re adding more content each week, so if you can’t find what you need today, chances are it will be on our website in the next few weeks.
There you have it. A full beginner guide on PFP NFTs.
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Lastly, make sure to check out our latest video about NFTs on Youtube by CryptoRut.