Organizers: Bernd Schmitt (Columbia Business School) and Reto Hofstetter (University of Lucerne)
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It has been a chaotic year for the ongoing development and influence of crypto currencies, blockchain, and NFTs (so-called “non-fungible tokens”). At the start of the year, Bitcoin investment and NFT sales were mainstream enough that governments around the world began to move from regulatory discussions to decisions. Blockchains and distributed ledgers with smart contract features (Ethereum, Solana, Binance) continue to grow and spur new business models for both start-ups and corporate initiatives. However, as the year continued some of the most renown protocols and brands in the space, the TerraUSD stable coin and FTX at the forefront, collapsed and brought much of the growing excitement (and fiscal value) of crypto and blockchain down with them.

Crypto-collectibles (including CryptoKitties, CryptoPunks, and Bored Apes) built on these chains have lost some of their cache, but are still valued in the millions of dollars (with the leading marketplace, OpenSea, dropping from a $13 billion to $1.5 billion valuation). Still, companies and brands of all sorts and sizes, from Coca Cola and Gucci to Adidas and Pizza Hut, continue to work on how to capitalize on NFTs and other smart contact features to create expanded value from easy proof of ownership and automated asset exchanges. In addition, technology giants like Meta and Twitter plan to incorporate blockchain technology into their social platforms, games, and emerging metaverses. At the same time, and most relevant for this conference, many researchers launched projects on crypto-marketing related phenomena.

The International Conference on Crypto-Marketing, to be held on December 5-6, 2022, at Columbia Business School in New York City, brings academic researchers and executives together to present their insights and research to debate the benefits and pitfalls of crypto-marketing. The conference will examine, how NFTs, crypto, and distributed ledger technology, will play a key role in physical and digital marketplaces, as well as how the brands built on these technologies work amongst all the opportunities and challenges of new technologies to scale them into the mainstream. It is often noted that in challenging economic times, the investigation and strategic development of the value exchange between brands and their stakeholders is more important than ever. Please register and join the discussion!


Crypto-marketing concerns any marketing practice that leverages blockchain technology to design, price, promote and sell digital and non-digital goods. The crypto-marketing conference at Columbia Business School – hosted by the Center on Global Brand Leadership — will be the second conference of its kind, following up on a smaller, inaugural conference held last year in Lucerne (Switzerland). In addition to academic sessions, there will be participation and educational sessions by crypto-industry experts.


Collaboration with the International Journal of Research in Marketing (IJRM)

One of the goals of the conference is to provide feedback to researchers on their current efforts, including work in progress, as this is an emerging area. Papers presented at the conference will be eligible for submission to a forthcoming Special Issue on the topic in IJRM. The editors of the journal, professors Renana Peres, David Schweidel, and Martin Schreier, along with select associate editors and writers — professors John Zhang, Anatoli Colicev, Ken Wilbur, Lan Luo, and Katherine Tucker — will present at the conference regarding the goals of the special issue.


Topics of interest

We invite researchers that work on a wide variety of crypto-marketing research to attend the conference. Papers to be presented at the conference will be both empirical and conceptual, and the focus may be strategic, behavioral or modeling-focused.  Concepts may originate from economics, psychology, management, sociology, anthropology, computer science, or other related disciplines.

VIEW THE CONFERENCE PROGRAM (as of November 11, 2022):

Topics of interest include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Strategic issues related to blockchain/crypto and marketing
  • Technological challenges towards implementing blockchain in marketing
  • Competitive structure and power balance under distributed data storage and smart contracts
  • Using blockchain to better assess the return on marketing activities along a decentralized distribution channel
  • Using blockchain timestamps to assess the temporal effects of marketing activities
  • Blockchain impact on the use of intermediaries throughout the marketing channel
  • Blockchain as a means to understand better the return on advertising
  • Consumer perception and mental accounting of crypto-currencies
  • Pricing issues in a multi-crypto-currency environment
  • Blockchain or NFT impacts on branding, promotion, distribution, and loyalty
  • NFTs: social status, design, buying and selling
  • The role of blockchain technology in better curating and managing customer data
  • Using blockchain for distributed product design
  • Blockchain, marketing and the metaverse
  • The impact of maintaining product provenance on consumers and firms
  • Blockchain and creative industries
  • Blockchain and gaming
  • Blockchain privacy issues
  • Blockchain and product counterfeits – consumer and firm perspective
  • The use of blockchain for better understanding cross product relationships (e.g. The Internet of Things)
  • Network externalities in a distributed world – will a blockchain environment reduce, enhance, of change the nature of network externalities
  • Blockchain and trust
  • Blockchain based social networks
  • Blockchain pseudonymity and user generated content
  • Blockchain as a means to manage intangible assets – brand equity and customer equity
  • Role of intermediaries and retailers
  • New constructs and conceptual development
  • Societal, regulatory, and legal issues of blockchain and marketing

Submission guidelines

The submission deadline for the conference concluded on September 15, 2022. We understand that crypto-marketing is a fast-moving area; some research was therefore still work-in-progress. We asked for a title page stating authors, university affiliations, and contact information, followed by eight (8) Powerpoint slides that describe the research question, conceptual framework, methodology, results, and practical and theoretical implications. Submissions will be reviewed and evaluated by the organizers and a committee of technology and marketing experts.

Submissions for the IJRM Blockchain Meets Marketing special issue will begin on January 1, 2023 and the deadline for submission is June 30, 2023.

We look forward to hearing from the presenters and seeing you during the holiday season in New York!

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