2017 was the year of the initial coin offering (ICO) and that year also marked the birth of ICO marketing strategies. In terms of numbers, the 900+ ICOs launched in 2017 raised over $5 billion. However, only around half of these initial coin offerings (ICOs) were successful. This could be attributed to poor products or a flawed marketing plan. Regardless of the reason, even the best product will fail if it is not backed up with an excellent marketing strategy.
The cryptocurrency market has proliferated in the last three years, with over 12,000 cryptocurrencies in circulation and more being generated as you read this piece. Thanks to the potential of speeding the fundraising process and the lack of laws, the initial coin offering (ICO) has become the favored approach for crypto businesses to generate capital.
On the other hand, the lack of rules raises a slew of security issues. After the DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization) was hacked, Ethereum had to be split into Ethereum and Ethereum Classic, and a significant update was required to restore those monies.
Since the Ethereum community was split on the choice, the network had to be forked, giving rise to Ethereum Classic. On the other hand, Ethereum’s vote of confidence in DAO was significant. Another critical issue is the blockchain community’s security and user-friendly and safe wallets that don’t require a long security key to authorize a transaction.
Even as ICOs remain popular in 2022, launching a successful ICO will be more challenging due to rising competition and increased regulation. As a result, your ICO marketing plan will make all the difference in your journey. We would even go as far as saying that your ICO marketing will determine the fate of your project.
In this article, we will look at things that you need to consider when creating an ICO marketing strategy. .
What is an ICO?
An initial coin offering (ICO) is the cryptocurrency industry’s version of an initial public offering (IPO). An ICO is a way for a company to raise money to develop a new coin, app, or service. Through an initial coin offering, interested investors can purchase a new cryptocurrency token created by the company. This token may have some utility with the company’s product or service or represent a stake in the company or project.
When a cryptocurrency startup seeks to acquire funds through an initial coin offering (ICO), the first step is to determine how the project will be structured. ICOs can be set up in a variety of methods, including static supply and static price, static supply and dynamic price, dynamic supply and static price:
- A company can establish a specified financial goal or limit, which means that the price of each token sold in the ICO is predetermined, and the total token supply is fixed.
- An ICO can have a fixed token supply and a variable funding target. This means that the overall price per token is determined by the amount of money raised in the ICO.
- Some ICOs feature a dynamic token supply but a fixed price, which means the supply is determined by the money raised.
Components of an ICO marketing strategy
A thorough and results-driven whitepaper is required for an ICO to generate enough buzz and demonstrate its validity. This gives investors a complete picture of your ICO project, including what it will do, how it will work, and why it is a good investment.
It would be best to keep in mind that a whitepaper for an ICO is more like a business plan than a scholarly article. It needs to be confident, and, most importantly, it needs to pique the interest of possible investors. When writing your whitepaper, keep in mind that this is your chance to sell the story behind your ICO. This is the point at which you should put your best foot forward.
The most essential things that you need to have in your whitepaper are:
- Your creative project or idea
- The unique qualifications of your team
- The total money required for the project.
- Investors’ potential return on investment (with substantial forecasts)
- The plan for distributing tokens
- Social obligations of businesses
- How you will keep illicit activities at bay
- Lovely design with a lot of functional visual components.
2) Well-designed/creative website
94% of potential investors will make their first impression of your project based on your web design. Each visitor’s experience with your web design will be reflected in their trip through your sales funnel.
In the lead-up to the whitepaper presentation, your website should function as a condensed version of your whitepaper, delivering your ICO’s most significant selling points to potential investors.
However, you must pay far more attention to design components on your website than you do to the textual content.
You need an appealing layout, SEO-friendly components, and eye-catching images.
3) ICO calendar listing
The best places to locate investors for your ICO are on reputable ICO directories. Each directory has its own set of posting guidelines. However, they frequently require information such as ICO project name, token details, your ICO website, contact information.
Try to get on as many calendars as possible to gain maximum exposure.
4) Press releases
Press releases are another effective form of content marketing that you can use to raise awareness about your ICO.
Professionally written, brief news bulletins are broadcast across a network of news sites, emphasizing essential events in your organization that the public should be aware of. If you run a successful campaign, your press releases will be shared swiftly throughout the crypto community.
You should regularly send out press releases to chosen news agencies to keep your investors up to date on essential details about your offerings. They can be featured on various third-party publications, social media handles, and blogs that would like to share them with their audience and the initial sites you post them on.
Would you prefer to let a PR specialist worry about writing your press release so you can dedicate more time to improving your crypto project? Check out Pressfarm’s packages and let us write a press release that will help your brand shine. In addition to writing professional press releases, Pressfarm’s team of PR specialists, expert writers and certified designers can also develop winning guest posts and eye-catching press kits for your brand.
In addition to arming you with quality content designed to make a journalist’s head turn, Pressfarm can also help you distribute this content widely, hence putting it in front of the right eyes. By submitting your content to the right startup directories and media outlets, Pressfarm can boost your online visibility and ensure your brand ranks in relevant search results across different search engines.
Moreover, Pressfarm’s media database contains over 1 million journalists across different industries, allowing you to keep generating publicity for your brand long after Pressfarm has wrapped your campaign up. With any of Pressfarm’s PR packages, you can put your brand in the spotlight where it belongs.
5) Bounty programs
To attract new investors, you can employ a variety of incentive packages. You may use bounty programs to incentivize behaviors that promote your ICOs and provide valuable insights by offering a variety of rewards.
Posting material, sharing links on social media, and even testing software for faults are examples of these acts.
Consider airdrop campaigns, in which you give away free tokens on some blockchain networks to attract new investors, or CPA campaigns. You can also reward people for accomplishing specific tasks with tokens.
6) Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is a different type of incentive program that focuses on lead and sales creation. You pay sales commissions to affiliates who bring you leads and buyers using affiliate marketing.
They’ll manage your marketing campaigns and handle everything from ad management to sales copy optimization for higher conversion rates, and all you have to do is pay them for the sales or other measurable outcomes they achieve.
7) Email marketing
Simple yet persuasive newsletters can help you attract new investors while keeping current investors interested.
You can grow your email list by offering visitors incentives to sign up for your newsletters.
For optimal impact, you should cover all stages of the buyer’s journey when developing your email marketing plan. Your plan needs to help with conveying your brand’s message and concepts, pushing appealing offers, and giving enough assistance to paid subscribers.
8) Introduction video
You might be able to attract a few more people to your project if you can create an excellent explainer video for it. This isn’t required, but it could be one of the most effective ways to promote your ICO.
Make sure your video is memorable and effective to get the intended effects. In a short amount of time, the explainer film can talk about your solution and provide your target audience with a sense of what to expect from the project. Videos have also been shown to have higher retention rates than text.
What is an ICO marketing checklist?
We have now briefly discussed the key elements that need to go into an ICO marketing strategy, but let us dive into how to do so effectively.
An ICO marketing checklist is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a checklist of critical points and steps to fulfill in order to launch your initial coin offering successfully.
Since marketing is one of the most crucial and challenging aspects of any ICO launch, you must commit time and effort to ensure that everything goes smoothly. Otherwise, you’ll find you’ve just wasted months of work creating prototypes and ideas that will never see the light of day.
Given its significance, you should begin developing your ICO marketing strategy around the time you complete your idea and start drafting your ICO white paper.
Creating a good ICO checklist
To underline an essential fact, creating and implementing a successful ICO marketing strategy requires an initial coin offering checklist. A solid checklist will walk you through each step of marketing your ICO logically, allowing you to create and implement your marketing plan from the ground up.
Since developing a strategy and putting it into action are closely linked, the checklist we’ll go over will be divided into two parts. These will include creating an ICO marketing checklist and implementing it.
1) Be sure you have a great idea and product
It is critical to ensure that you have the most incredible product to sell before building any marketing strategy. This may seem not very intelligent, but you should take the time to assess your product before you begin.
Consider the need for such a project, the size of the market, and whether your idea is the best solution. Examining your competition will help you understand your project’s strengths and limitations and assist you in creating a much stronger marketing approach.
2) Put together a good team
Crypto developers frequently make the mistake of entrusting the marketing of their ICO to people with no prior experience in the field. This is a giant mistake. It’s just as crucial to have a solid team to launch your ICO as it is to develop a robust project.
Generally, the staff needed to create an ICO include:
- A project strategist and organizer.
- A PR specialist.
- A social media specialist.
- A certified public accountant is familiar with digital currencies.
- A technical support team.
If you cannot find such individuals, it is beneficial to hire a professional ICO marketing company. While it may seem like an expensive option, the money and reach that ICO marketing services can help create from a successful ICO more than make up for the expense.
3) Create a basic marketing plan & build on it
The critical elements of any ICO marketing plan include market research, legal research, target market, product, competition, budget, whitepaper/mission statement, market strategies, goals, and plans for the future.
With these in mind, you’ll be able to create a cohesive marketing strategy that will come together flawlessly in the end.
Many of these aspects of an ICO marketing effort can be done concurrently. During your market research, for example, you can come across material that assists you in identifying your target market, pricing your crypto tokens, and writing your white paper.
Instead of attempting to complete all tasks at once, assign periods for the team to work on individual tasks. It will be much easy to separate them.
Remember to create a solid marketing strategy timeline that outlines when certain aspects of the strategy will be implemented. Promotional events will need to be held closer to the debut date to maintain interest.
You’ll clearly understand your marketing plan by the time you’ve looked at and discovered solutions for all of these points; all that’s left now is to put it into action.
4) Get the ball rolling
It would help if you have already started revving up your marketing machine once you’ve finished the basics of the ICO preparation stage. It’s all about creating a ‘buzz’ about your product with good marketing.
It would be best to direct your strategy on the internet because the ICO investor community is digitally focused. This is a significant benefit because it means you can do everything from the comfort of your own office. Furthermore, digital marketing, such as social media marketing and influencer marketing, is often less expensive, getting more bang for your buck.
You should start developing all of the logos, photographs, and videos you’ll need to promote your project about the same time you begin writing your white paper.
Again, only attempt this if you are confident in your abilities. Since appearances are crucial, ICO investors will be considerably less likely to invest if they see poorly designed promotional material.
After you’ve established your brand’s foundation, it’s time to create social media profiles on all major social media platforms. Set up an email and begin growing an email marketing list, then get your team to work on creating that truly fascinating website that will showcase your project to its best potential.
5) Growth hack your ICO
The following step in your effective marketing campaigns should start approximately a month or two before the ICO goes live. It’s time to start building the buzz that will make your ICO a great success. If you’ve hired an ICO marketing agency, now is the moment to tell them to start working on your ICO campaign.
To build some significant interest, announce your ICO launch date on your social media accounts, email lists, Slack, Discord, RocketChat, and as many forums as possible. You may also share your promotional video on YouTube and other social media sites to alert people to the forthcoming event.
It’s also a good idea to distribute a few guest blog posts about your project. This will assist in attracting new investors, but it may also result in some genuine exposure.
There are numerous reputable websites, such as Coinbase, that investors use as a significant source of information. Getting your ICO mentioned on one of these sites is like finding a river of gold. Make contact with these media outlets to see if they will cover your story.
Your postings and advertisements should include a link to your website and contact information.
6) Answer questions quickly & professionally
Customer service is one aspect of a successful marketing strategy that is frequently disregarded. How fast and extensively you respond to questions can make or break the reputation of your project.
During the launch of your ICO, you are likely to be contacted by a variety of parties seeking additional information. While the majority of people may not wind up purchasing any tokens, you can bet your bottom dollar that offering engaged and detailed responses might make the difference between an investor who comes back and one who vanishes.
7) Meet potential investors
It’s critical to contact your target market and understand your client when raising funds through an ICO. Around the country, there are numerous crypto meetups, conferences, and seminars. Attending these events will teach you how to validate your concept. After all, engaging with cryptocurrency enthusiasts one on one will give you a chance to gauge whether they need your solution or if the problem you’re tackling is one they face.
8) Build a community
The most crucial components of being transparent are brand awareness and community building, which will help to alleviate any anxiety or doubt that potential investors may have. It’s critical to focus on things that don’t scale, such as responding to potential consumers directly at first. This way, your launch has the growth and champions it needs to succeed.
In the early days of crypto, most people began discussing what works and what’s new in the crypto-currency realm on forums like bitcointalk.org and Reddit. Your team must take part in these discussions and establish a presence online. However, keep in mind that you need a delicate balance between involvement and additional value vs. overt advertising and corporate shills.
9) Pay for banner ads
Consider paying for banner ads on forums, blogs, new publications, or other online platforms that cater to readers interested in bitcoin, digital currencies, and the blockchain industry. In this way, you can raise brand awareness and put your project on the radar of potential investors. A display network often manages banner advertisements, but you may also need to go directly to the source website and request the administrators’ price and metrics. Remember that crypto-news networks are capitalizing on the ICO boom, and you should look for monthly ad packages and content releases.
10) Have consistent PR and content marketing
This is the holy grail of ICO marketing. Continue to promote your ICO’s recent developments via press releases to stay in the headlines. For content marketing, make sure your website and key tech platforms like Medium and Hackernoon have SEO-optimized material. It would also help create a social media outreach strategy that covers all of your product’s growth and services and long-format material.
There are a variety of strategies to sell an ICO, but it is a risky path that should be taken with caution. These strategies outlined above will help you make a great impression, but they will also help you deal with any unwanted publicity that arises promptly and nip it in the bud.
When it comes to marketing your ICO and reaching your target audience, several marketing tactics might help. You should also think outside the box because the field is new, and numerous techniques and concepts have yet to be investigated.