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4 March, 2024

DISCOVER HOW NFTS TRANSFORMED IT’S THE SHIP: A CAPTAIN’S TALE

You’ve probably seen it in the movie “Crazy Rich Asians (2018).” There was this one wild party scene on a cruise, starring fellow Malaysian (and shipmate!) Henry Golding (watch clip here).

What if I told you we actually rocked a cruise party just like that way back in 2014?

Our “It’s The Ship” flagship event has since grown from strength to strength, becoming South East Asia’s go-to Music Festival experience on-board an International 5-star cruise liner.

The big idea behind this IP is to build & foster a global community of “Shipmates” who are connected by one simple goal, which is to embrace whoever it is you’ve wanted to be, and more importantly, have a good time doing it with like-minded people!

We usually set sail for 3-5 days, traveling across the ocean to experience a one-of-its-kind, “on-deck” music & dance festival that features:

  • Electrifying performances by international, regional, and local artists
  • Invite-only and consumer journey experiences (random tailored events that happen)
  • And of course, scores of good food, drinks, and great company

Looking back at our amazing voyages, I must say, the credit goes to the great people at Livescape for the passion & energy they bring every day, even in choppy weather.

This crown jewel of ours had to be halted because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But we didn’t completely shut off the fun. We hunkered down. We went back to the drawing board. We strategized. We thought deeply about how we could leverage Web3 technology to create new, innovative opportunities for our Shipmates.

And that’s how our new generation of DuckDrops was born.

The goal behind the It’s The Ship’s Duck Drop NFT

We recently launched a limited edition of 8888 NFTs into the digital market, featuring the mascot of our IP, the funky yellow bathtub rubber duck. If you’re not yet on board with the whole idea of NFTS, do check out the 21-bit retro-style video we’ve made to explain the benefits, and also read through a follow-up blog post I wrote on the topic.

The goal behind these DuckDrops was to spark up interest & engagement from our Shipmates by giving them a digital token that could open up real value in the future.

People could (and still can) mint our DuckDrops using the cryptocurrency Ethereum. While we started at around 0.15Ξ, the value is set to go up as we open up the access to more & more people. For every DuckDrop holder, we’ve promised privileges like lifetime discounts on our next tours, entry to private parties, early lineup announcements, limited branded merch etc.

Most importantly is we give Shipmates a say in various pillars throughout the brand on where we go next, and also how we shape the whole event experience. I personally believe this has always been a big contributing factor to our success until now, so we’re definitely going ahead with it.

But how would we collect feedback when everyone has been cooped up in their homes for the last couple of years? So this May end, we arranged a small experimental “capsule-sized” party in Pattaya (Thailand), just to catch up with our shipmates and it was a blast.

Here’s a quick vid-recap to give you guys an idea on day 1 & day 2! Link

I think this makes a great practical case study on how a brand/business can use NFTs to deliver real-life utility & drive value for their brand advocates. So here’s a glimpse of what went down at the party, what we learned, and how we’ll be using the insights to chart the direction for our Ship

How did our Shipmates react?

It was exhilarating meeting our duck NFT holders after so long. By minting their ‘ducks’ we were able to identify their loyalty to the brand and what we stand for and reward them back. We finally had the opportunity to have face-to-face interactions with the folks throughout their stay.

The coolest part? Our shipmates also got to meet the captains & crew behind the Ship, and that two-way banter not only brought up a ton of great throwback #shipstories, but we were also able to really listen and understand what our shipmates wanted moving forward.

For example, our OG holders are eager for “Hip-Hop” music to reign supreme at our next IRL experience. Our answer to that?

Sure, why the fuck not?

The Need for NFT Education

Another nuanced insight we got to hear is that NFTs wasn’t something many people knew a lot about prior to this campaign. Many shipmates minted their first NFT with us!

We did have a few Azuki and BAYC holders that came on (which was so exciting!), but for the majority, we were able to educate our Shipmates about the utility of NFTs, and in particular, what kind of exclusive experiences they were going to receive for being DuckDrop holders.

When we told them about our commitment to a lifetime of value to them as shipmates, their reactions were both inspiring & heart-warming, so I can’t wait for everybody to actually enjoy the rewards they’re looking forward to.

We’re so happy we did not attract any flippers or traders (people who resell NFTs in the secondary market). Instead, we found genuine people who love the brand as their own. So they took a plunge into the web3 rabbit hole … all because of our initiative! And for that, we are extremely HUMBLED.

Now we know that there’s an interest in this technology, so we need to invest more time & effort in helping our shipmates get accustomed with the potential of NFTs.

BRING. IT. ON.

In fact, The Livescape Group’s dedication to the space is 100%. We’re already kicking off Asia’s first NFT confest for the general public this August, so do check that out here.

So what’s next for It’s The Ship?

We shared our plans with our Duck Holders so they know what’s up (shhh!) – and man, do we have an amazing set of IRLs planned for 2022 and 2023. The best part is all our Duck Holders will not only get the BEST perks for each experience but will also have a say in what happens next in our lineup!

Hip Hop? DONE.

Merch designs?

Charter destinations?

Invite-only themed party ideas?

Our Duck Holders decide and we make it happen!

We’ve on-boarded Sam Simmons as our advisor for the project and I cannot wait to bring more value to our Duck Holders – he has already paved great insight for us and I’m excited for what’s next.

Conclusion: Leverage your NFTs with a clear purpose

So that was a sneak peak into how we re-ignited our engine for It’s The Ship. All we did was use a simple new piece of tech (NFTs).

By attaching real rewards, we transformed their value beyond purely digital assets into physical passes that could unlock real benefits for the community.

I’m excited about what’s coming up next for this IP, and I can’t wait to share more updates with all of you in the coming months.

Want to get on board this crazy experience? Whether you’re looking to be our next Shipmate, or you’re drawn to the business opportunities this unlocks for brands, I want to talk to you!

So let’s get quackin!

Iqbal Ameer

 

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Busan - Nagasaki - Busan | 23 - 26 May 2024