How to market crypto in the web3 era
- Discover how to successfully market your crypto product in the web3 era
- Build trust, create a community, and leverage new marketing channels
The promise of web3 is set to shake up the technological landscape, and any forward-thinking company will need to understand how they fit into this new ecosystem. But with any new technology and buzzword, it can be hard to break through and stand out from the competition. For crypto companies, this could not be more true; significant FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) surrounding the space since the ongoing bear market and downfall of some of the biggest players have tainted the rest of the space. Therefore, it’s important to consider how to market effectively in the web3 era.
What is Web3?
There’s been various iterations of the Internet since its’ creation in 1983, with the most recent and current version being web3. But the biggest difference between web2 and 3 comes down to the centralised vs. decentralised structure, with web2 comprising mostly of a few central tech companies harvesting users' data, in some cases without their consent. On the other hand, web3 will place users at the centre, giving them control over their own data and identity.
Therefore, decentralised blockchain technology plays a critical role in web3, from paying for things using crypto, to NFTs being used to certify ownership of users’ digital items. All of these require minimal interaction from centralised or third-party entities, and in doing so aims to enhance security, privacy, and user experience.
The vast differences between web2 and web3 and a new user-centric model means that marketing must adapt.
Despite hopes of a decentralised web3, there are also concerns about the vast amount of user information that will be stored online and used for accessing the Internet. This comes with concerns about how this information could be used and that individuals may not have full access over their data, which has been reiterated by a Facebook whistleblower.
The past year has also seen the collapse of some of the biggest names in the crypto space, starting with Terra Luna, and most recently Silvergate, and this has been widely circulated amongst mainstream media. But there are a huge number of well-respected and regulated players with good intentions that are revolutionising the digital economy and providing genuine solutions to everyday problems.
With that in mind, this presents an opportunity for Marketing teams to focus on building trust with consumers. Promoting value propositions that demonstrate how safe and secure their product is, offering transparency, and in-depth explanations and education for sceptics that don’t understand the crypto space will be important for onboarding new audiences, and regaining the trust of existing customers.
Creating a Community
A look at what those companies that have survived the bear market have in common, will show that a community is a key component of growing a project. In the web3 era where users are at the heart, once users trust a brand enough to share their data with them, they’ll also consider what sort of community exists within that company.
Not only does a community give users a sense of belonging with like-minded people and additional reassurance to trust that company, but helps in organically growing your userbase by inviting their friends and families into the community. In fact, last year, one of the biggest factors that set alarm bells ringing during the bankruptcy of the globe’s largest crypto exchange, FTX, was the lack of communication with their community.
As a Marketing team, it’s therefore vital to understand your target audience, what they need from you and their behaviours. Data and analytics are more important than ever, including information openly available on the blockchain.
This not only ensures the content and product benefits your customers as best as possible, but that they remain engaged with your product. And with crypto becoming increasingly mainstream, it's important to ensure that the communications are accessible to a wide range of people.
The Evolution of New Marketing Channels
The growing importance of community means that crypto companies also play the role of providing the glue to develop that community and allow for these new interactions to take place. And of course, communication should not be a one-way thing.
Emails, instant messages and press releases remain important for providing an overview of important updates and news that consumers should be aware of, particularly for top of funnel engagement. However, decentralised social media platforms such as Discord and Telegram have become pivotal for marketing. These channels provide a two-way conversation as opposed to one-way communication that is often used in traditional tech companies, promoting freedom of speech and a lack of censorship.
Making this community feel valued by listening to them; regularly seeking feedback and looking to them for ideas will give them more reasons to be active. In fact, you can even incentivise your users to participate in conversations with crypto such as tip.cc and Zealy! By ensuring the company, its founders and your users' visions are aligned through consistent messaging, and showcasing the genuine use cases of your product in the real world, you’ll make sure the community and product is working towards the same great goals.
Community Relations Management
In web3, it could be argued that CRM, typically meaning ‘customer relationship management’, has pivoted towards community relationship management. Beyond trust and open conversations, fierce competition from other crypto companies means that there’s a fight for marketing companies to retain their customers.
Give them a reason to stay and create a sense of exclusivity within your community that only members can have access to. Perks may come in multiple forms: crypto payments, priority access to new features, airdrops, NFT mints, affiliate marketing, giveaways, access to special events etc. Whilst companies such as payments platform, Wirex, have created their own native token that is rewarded for certain actions and can be reused within the platform. These will help to incentivise community participation.
Web3 is encompassing everyday consumer’s lives, and for crypto companies to keep pace with the competition, they must embrace these changes. Despite the failures of some crypto businesses, there are many opportunities for growth in the sector, and understanding how to market your product effectively with a focus on users and community is crucial.