When a new vertical starts gaining exposure, sharp entrepreneurs and marketers leverage that to get into the game and generate revenue. But, it needs to be done early so as to not miss the market that can get quickly saturated. This time, ICOs are using some of the vanilla marketing tactics via social media posts and white papers to increase awareness. Marketers can use their expertise to take craft advanced marketing campaigns.
In order to get the maximum out of ICO sector, marketers need to gain clear understanding of ICO. But, knowledge of cryptocurrency is most important to dive into working of ICO.
Cryptocurrency is powered by blockchain technology, which has virtual currency capabilities. Bitcoin, a pioneer in crypto market, operates as a massive ledger of digital transactions. It’s anonymous and secure, which has resulted in tremendous popularity; by November 2016, total market value of cryptocurrencies reached $13.8 billion.
An initial coin offering (ICO), is a sale of a new cryptocurrency started by companies to raise capital for funding the project. ICO buyers get digital coins or tokens in exchange for funding. So, an investor in ICO, would trade an established cryptocurrency like bitcoin for the new, company-created coins or tokens. This is an high-risk activity, but returns can be enormous.
In this scenario marketers can swoop in and help the companies meet their funding target by targeted promotions. First off, marketers need to traverse through a lot of regulations before setting up ICO campaigns. ICOs have received nearly four times as much funding as Bitcoin companies raised in venture capital dollars this year, so it’s lucrative to jump right into the game.
The most challenging aspect would to work within the financial jurisdiction set up by watchdogs. For example, it has been suggested that ICO advertising will be bound by rules similar to the ones governing stock promotion. Mostly marketers will have to be attentive of blue sky laws, securities promotion laws, and broker/dealer laws, as ICOs would generally fall under these. These regulations can be complex and exhaustive, as they cover important aspects such as the language used in the marketing and the setup of the company.
After covering the regulations surrounding ICO marketing, the next step is to figure out how various marketing tools can be used. As common people would not have significant knowledge of ICOs, it is critical to educate the audiences via advertising campaigns. It can be a link to an article or a video explaining benefits and “modus operandi”.
It’s also useful to start this at the earliest, since ICO publicity is growing at a fast rate. Only 22 percent of companies are satisfied with their conversion rates, but the buzz around ICOs can make that process a lot smoother.
Other than that agencies can also consult their clients to include cryptocurrency in some aspect (like accepting payment) wherever feasible. This can help the companies get easy PR coverage. Since it’s quite early, it’s difficult to predict how marketing will be affected by ICOs. But, the current ecosystem is ideal for marketers to help startups with ICOs.