While Bitcoin, and particularly Blockchain, awareness and interest are on the rise, in the global scheme of things these are still relatively novel and new technologies.
Bitcoin averages about 300,000 transactions per day at present, compared to Visa’s approximately 150 mln daily, indicating an adoption gulf before digital currency reaches wide use as the money of the future. As such, marketing and educational efforts are critical to the advancement of digital currency. Efforts such as the Decentralized Marketing Network work to increase awareness of Bitcoin and Blockchain technology.
According to Robert Genito, CEO of Genitrust, which heads peer-to-peer cryptocurrency trading platform Wall of Coins, a marketing strategy is vital to establishing a trusted presence:
“Yes, it is obviously important to have a trusting image for your service to the community.”
Amanda B. Johnson, host of video show Dash: Detailed, which is funded by the Dash treasury, explains that the purpose of a robust marketing operation is to educate potential users rather than sell them:
“My goal is to educate about Dash's benefits -- in addition, to explain why those benefits are able to exist and how competitors stack up. If all this is done in friendly and accessible language, people really appreciate that you've done so much homework for them. Top it off with links to resources to learn more and you've provided a valuable service to the busy person.”
Word of mouth as the best marketing strategy
While a streamlined marketing strategy spearheaded by a company or community behind a technology can help educate and convince new users, ultimately word of mouth is what differentiates between artificial hype and actual solid tech. According to Rijk Plasman, founder of Dutch-based digital currency Gulden, the most effective marketing is the firsthand experience of satisfied customers:
“We believe the only marketing that works at this stage is word of mouth because crypto isn't easy to use yet, it comes with challenges. So you want to be informed about it by someone you trust.”
“People expect something that is at least as easy as what they are used to already, so extensive marketing would at this stage only result in disappointment. That is if you want to reach the general public, if you target the crypto community then it's a whole other story. Then you only have to sell lies and you can call it marketing, as long as the result is a short-term pump.”
Confrontational, competitive attitudes are hurting the cryptocurrency field
Marketing strategies between the teams and communities of Blockchain businesses and technologies, however, can become confrontational. Andreas Antonopoulos famously blamed delays in Bitcoin’s development partly on community trolling. Genito believes the confrontational attitude between business hurts productivity:
“Business co-operation is the weak spot. People are still locked into this "competitive" mindset. Competing currencies, business competition, etc.”
According to Genito, cooperation and collaboration is a lacking component in the world of cryptocurrency, and that focusing on working together, instead of in conflict, will solve many of the field’s larger problems:
“You can market all you want, but the world we live in is based on cooperation. We must coordinate our efforts together, and the crypto companies and leaders who lack cooperation are where you find crypto embezzlement, large-scale hacks, the need for new business angels/pivots (ie: Circle), or services that become stale and less useful.
How do we improve this? Do we focus on cooperation: how can we work together? How can we benefit everyone? How can we give others the opportunity to get involved and also flourish? The answer is cooperation.”
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