So you’ve stumbled upon a solution to a problem in the market, maybe found a niche in the booming crypto scene. You have what it takes to actually build the product, but how will you get word of your project out there?
Or maybe you’re a little bit further along and your project has already completed its ICO. Investors were excited at the time but interest and engagement in your Telegram group has waned somewhat since then. It’s not your fault though! Building a reliable (and secure!) product doesn’t happen overnight, contrary to what most people believe.
If the above scenarios sound familiar, take heart that many a project go through the same growing pains. Marketing to onboard new users and user engagement to keep your existing community happy are essential components of any successful project. Fortunately for you, I’ve interviewed several big names within the crypto space and picked their brains on the best ways to do just that.
So, grab that cup of coffee and read on to find a few project agnostic activities that might just give your project the boost it needs… at least until you hire a full time marketing and community lead.
Giveaways & Lotteries
Let’s be frank. While some might be in it for the tech, the #1 motivation behind the majority of users in any crypto project is turning a profit. A common tactic is therefore to capitalize on this desire via giveaways and lotteries.
By assigning tasks where users stand a larger chance of winning a non insignificant amount of money for every additional task they complete, you essentially kill two birds with one stone. Not only are you keeping the existing user base happy with the chance of making a profit, you‘ve also temporarily gained a large and very motivated marketing team to help grow your audience.
As a bonus, activity in itself gives your project an air of trustworthiness. Many investors take into account the liveliness of a project’s social media channels when deciding whether or not to invest in a project. As a result, an active community is far more appealing to the new investor, regardless of whether or not the activity was spurred on by the chance of winning some free money.
Twitch Vs Gleam
If you’re looking to grow your presence on social media then Twitter is the obvious choice to host and promote your giveaways. Not only is it completely free, but having a large number of users liking and sharing your posts will do wonders for the Twitter algorithm, thus getting more eyes on your post.
However, Twitter competitions come with their own set of difficulties. Picking winners, verifying that they’ve completed the assigned tasks and reaching out to each individual winner for payment details can be a very manual and very time consuming task. In addition, a common tactic used by Twitter scammers is to closely imitate the winner’s account (the difference between cxsteam and csxteam is pretty hard to spot!) before reaching out to you and posing as the winner.
Gleam offers an alternative. A simple to use online sweepstakes tool, there are built in mechanisms that only award users with a point once its verified that the assigned tasks have been completed. You can also collect all the information you need (eg: emails to grow your mailing list, wallet addresses to send winnings to etc) upfront, thus removing much of the manual effort and risk associated with Twitter competitions.
Social Media Marketing
From providing project updates via the project’s Telegram channel to just chatting to your community on Twitter, the importance of having active social media channels cannot be understated. In a world where too many have been victims of rug pull scams, consistent communication from a project team does wonders in reassuring existing users and is a huge plus in any potential investor’s book.
That doesn’t however, mean that your Twitter needs to be filled only with project updates. Cryptographèr, the social media manager for Bogged recommends spicing things up with a mix of incentives, from community quizzes on project specific topics to trading competitions and simple Telegram games like dice rolls. He even had a Telegram bot purpose-built to drive shillers towards the $BOG Social Reward Program group where they can earn rewards for driving engagement on any of Bogged’s social media channels!
Another great example of a simple Telegram game is the Non Fungible Ape (NFA) guessing game that Apeswap hosted before each drop. The event organizer would release several clues (think: “I spy with my little eye an NFA that has red laser eyes”) and the first person who correctly identifies the NFA would win a small amount of money. These events consistently saw a huge turnout amongst the community while simultaneously driving traffic to the various NFAs that would soon be released.
Discord has also seen a surge in popularity in recent months as a way of connecting users with the project team. Many crypto projects that use Telegram as their main method of communication are forced to create separate Telegram groups for price discussions, announcements, general chat, different languages and more. Discord offers a simpler solution by allowing you to handle all of that in a much more organized manner via creating separate channels within the same Discord group.
Alpha groups, whitelists for NFT drops and ICOs, additional rewards unlocked at key Discord milestones, these days crypto projects are expected to have a presence on Discord alongside Twitter, Medium and Telegram. Building an active Discord will therefore not just serve your users well, but is also key to the success and legitimacy of your project.
This list wouldn’t be complete without Ask Me Anything (AMA) sessions. Originating from Reddit, AMAs are a popular interview format that gives community members direct access to the upper echelons of a project team and in the crypto world, can also serve as another yardstick in which investors measure the trustworthiness and commitment of the team.
Done correctly, AMAs serve a dual purpose of both engaging and reassuring your existing community that the project is going well, alongside being a platform to share your vision for the project in order to attract new investors.
Do note however, that its important to pick the right host for your AMA session. There are far too many AMA “communities” out there filled with bots and fake profiles that promise an audience of 10k — 20k, but will do nothing to get any actual eyes on your project. Make sure to do your own research and remember not to be bedazzled by the big follower counts, your money is far better spent on a small AMA group with investors who are actually interested in learning about your project.
The final mechanic we’ll look at today is the referral system. This is a tried and true method used by almost every business imaginable, crypto or otherwise, for one simple reason — it works.
Not much needs to be said about the benefits of having your existing user base acting as an army of voluntary spokespersons to anyone who’ll listen in exchange for certain benefits. Binance, Bogged Finance, American Express, that random coffee place down the road all offer referral programs. Heck Crypto.com, the 9th ranked CEX in the world by exchange score (at time of writing) offers 2 separate referral programs!
So the only real question is… why aren’t you?
2021 was undoubtedly a great year for the crypto scene, with a general shift in the mindset of mainstream investors towards diversifying their portfolio to include crypto assets. As a result of the money flowing into the space however, projects were popping up left and right which left investors spoilt for choice. With all the distraction in the space, keeping your existing user base engaged in your project became an art in itself.
While you might be able to get away with pushing it down the priority list for a time, remember that marketing and project engagement is no less important than building the actual product. Hopefully the list above will be helpful in kickstarting your marketing plans, but should you need further clarification or maybe just someone to discuss a few ideas with, feel free to pop on over to The Cronicle where I can usually be found lurking!
Signing off for now.
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Note: The views expressed are my own and should not in any way be taken as financial advice.