If you work anywhere within the digital landscape, you have most likely heard about cryptocurrency. You may even be part of the crypto industry yourself.
The cryptocurrency market has become decentralized, and the era of the Initial Coin Offering or ICO is rising rapidly. Operating in this industry, you need to stand out and differentiate yourself from competitors.
With active promotion, your ICO chain can generate significant business. Today, we are going to tell you about the ICO marketing services and tools you can use to give your company a boost.
We will discuss:
- What is ICO marketing?
- How to market your ICO
- Step #1 – Create a winning whitepaper
- Step #2 – Design a great website
- Step #3 – Keep your site updated and SEO-friendly
- Step #4 – Start blogging
- Step #5 – ICO marketing with paid advertising
- Step #6 – Build a cryptocurrency community on social media
- Step #7 – Publish announcements on popular ICO calendars
- Step #8 – Email marketing and ICO promotion
- Step #9 – Working with ICO influencers
- ICO marketing bonus
- ICO marketing FAQ
Let’s jump into our ICO marketing checklist.
What is ICO marketing?
An ICO is a process of raising funds for a cryptocurrency project. It involves selling part of the cryptocurrency to early investors in exchange for bitcoin or legal tender.
It is rather like IPO, where investors purchase company shares. ICO marketing best practices involve utilizing a set of tools designed for promoting an ICO chain, with the primary purpose of attracting as much attention as possible and accumulating financial resources.
How to market your ICO
There are several steps involved in marketing an ICO. Here, we will explore each task in depth and explain how it will benefit your overall marketing plan.
Step #1 – Create a winning whitepaper
Your whitepaper must provide all the intricate details of your project in a way that convinces your potential investors they’ll get significant returns on their investment.
Tell them about:
- Your core idea
- How you plan to make your idea a reality
- The legal aspects of your ICO
- Commercial, technological, and financial information
Include every necessary detail about your ICO in language a non-expert can understand. Your whitepaper should cover:
- How is your solution different?
- How reputable is your company?
- How are your tokens distributed?
- Legalities — cryptocurrency’s biggest challenge
This tutorial will help you create a winning whitepaper.
Step #2 – Design a great website
Your website is your project’s first impression for potential investors, so make sure it is well-designed, easy to navigate, and includes all the information a visitor would want or need.
Create separate tabs containing all the details of your ICO, including a page for your whitepaper. Tell your visitors about yourself and your team and provide the means to contact you via an online form or links to your social media platforms.
Finally, make sure your website is secure and uses an HTTPS security certificate.
What you shouldn’t do is try to cut corners and save money on your website design. The way you present your ICO is fundamental. If you want people to be excited about your idea, you need great design, smart branding, and an excellent user experience.
Many ICOs ignore the design aspect and buy a simple, cheap WordPress site which looks exactly like 9 out of 10 projects on the internet.
If you need help with your website design, consult an ICO consulting firm like Lasting Trend. Think about the message you want to deliver and how you want visitors to remember you.
Step #3 – Keep your website updated and SEO-friendly
Your site should serve as a resource containing valuable information about your ICO. Potential investors will visit your website to get the latest updates on your project.
So, make sure you regularly update it with your current status and don’t forget, a new website requires SEO. Make your website SEO-friendly and bring in specialists to conduct an SEO and technical audit to ensure your site will rank highly on search engines — it’s essential for maintaining your potential investors’ confidence.
Step #4 – Start blogging
A blog will help you direct organic traffic to your website, improve your branding, and give your project a personal touch. Try to stay disciplined when it comes to writing content, uploading a new piece once or twice a week as a minimum.
Think about the content people want to read. Don’t fall into the trap of merely writing about how awesome your project is and how you are going to change the world.
Digital marketing for an ICO should be about quality, not quantity. Brainstorm with your team, try to figure out how to deliver your message in the best possible way while giving the crypto-community something fresh and exciting to digest.
Step #5 – ICO marketing with paid advertising
When using paid advertising to market your ICO, be aware of the rules and regulations social media platforms have put in place to protect their users from scammers exploiting the allure of cryptocurrency to defraud the public.
Several of these platforms have banned ads relating to ICOs and Bitcoin. Facebook has gone so far as to ban cryptocurrency marketing posts.
However, Google still allows its users to promote an ICO. You can sign up for Google AdWords and use it to plan an effective paid advertising campaign for your ICO.
If you need any help with paid advertising, the experts at ICO marketing company Lasting Trend can always give you a hand.
Step #6 – Build a cryptocurrency community on social media
One of the unique aspects of the cryptocurrency world is the strength of its communities. A dedicated community can set the foundation for a successful launch. Some of the biggest crypto-coins on the market started by building a thriving online community.
Let’s take a look at a few examples:
- Telegram – A mobile messaging platform with similarities to WhatsApp. The critical difference between the two is that Telegram provides an additional layer of security by automatically deleting chats after a user-defined period. Some of the most popular cryptocurrency communities on Telegram include:
- Decenter (72,000 members)
- News Bitcoin (61,000 members)
- Forklog (54,000 members)
- Cointelegraph (9,000 members)
- Quora – Getting involved with ICO-related topics on Quora is an excellent way of generating exposure for your project. You can find plenty of discussion about ICO promotion on this platform. For instance, you may have a blog post that answers a question about ICOs. Drop a few lines and insert a link to your blog.
- Reddit – There are several notable “subreddits” dedicated to a variety of cryptocurrencies and ICO marketing. The largest of these is Tron, which has over 50,000 contributors.
- Medium – A publishing platform widely used within the blockchain community. Securities token platform Polymath launched its own “collection” on Medium, where the company communicates with users via blogs and updates.
- Twitter – Sadly, there’s no chance of marketing your ICO on this popular micro-blogging platform, as Twitter has banned ICO-related ads.
- Bitcointalk – Despite the name, this is a discussion website dedicated to cryptocurrency in general, not just Bitcoin. Peruse the forums and interact with the community. Then, you can announce your project via a well-crafted “ANN post.”
- Steemit – One of the best blogging platforms for ICO marketing. You can even launch a content writing competition, offering an exciting prize for the best post. It’s a great way of generating interest in your project.
- Facebook – Though you can’t advertise your ICO via Facebook, there are still a wealth of cryptocurrency communities operating on the biggest social media platform in the world. They include:
You may even decide to open your own Facebook group eventually.
- YouTube – One of the best ways you can promote your ICO is to collaborate with a notable cryptocurrency YouTuber — one with thousands of subscribers, ideally. It’s a great way of making your mark in the industry. Popular influencers include:
- LinkedIn – There are tens of thousands of LinkedIn users sharing and seeking information about cryptocurrency and ICOs. There are several large-scale groups you should join to drum up interest in your project. These include:
Step #7 – Publish announcements on popular ICO calendars
You can think of ICO calendars as like a Kickstarter or GoFundMe campaign for ICOs. They provide the means to quickly generate a buzz around your cryptocurrency token by posting announcements about its release. You could announce your ICO on:
Journalists covering cryptocurrency keep a watchful eye on ICO calendars, so this is one of your best chances of getting your project into the press.
Step #8 – ICO email marketing
Despite its growing popularity, the cryptocurrency industry remains impenetrable to potential users and investors who may not have grasped the technical side.
Excellent copywriting and email marketing skills are an essential part of promoting your ICO. You need to ensure you create informative content that is free of complicated jargon and easy to understand, even for a crypto-novice.
Create a list of users who are interested in your campaign and have given their consent to receive emails from you. The best way to achieve this is to ask visitors to your website to sign up to email updates.
Then, create an attractive, exciting newsletter that you can send out regularly to your email marketing list. You never know — it may end up in front of some potential investors too.
To encourage visitors to your website to sign up for email updates, offer a free yet valuable incentive. Perhaps give away a useful blog that guides cryptocurrency newbies through the process of choosing the right type of coin to invest in.
Also, create an effective autoresponder sequence. An autoresponder ensures those who have signed up to your email marketing receive regular correspondence from you without you having to send emails out manually.
Step #9 – Working with ICO influencers
Earlier, we mentioned you could work with influencers within the ICO industry via YouTube. You can also give your start-up a considerable boost by collaborating with popular cryptocurrency bloggers.
For instance, you could publish a post on some of the most popular crypto-blogs such as Coindesk, Cointelegraph, and CCN. Check out this list of the top 50 most popular blogs about ICO for other notable names.
ICO marketing bonus
Pre-launch ICO promotion is an integral part of your overall campaign. It involves:
- Announcing your project to the crypto-community, detailing your idea and intentions. Your primary goal is to draw as much attention to your ICO as you can.
- Developing a whitepaper, outlining your business plan, vision, team, and technology. Also, provide a detailed roadmap of your project.
- Earning and maintaining the trust of your investors. All legal questions should be addressed during the pre-marketing phase.
- Finding professionals from different fields of business to advise you and your team, resolve problems, and help your ICO achieve its goals.
- Developing and implementing your token. Decide how many tokens to issue, how many you will sell to the general public, and how many you will keep for future development. Also apply a financial value to your token at this stage.
- Locating your target audience and presenting them with a unique value proposition. Implement a multi-faceted ICO marketing campaign to keep potential investors and clients in the loop.
Your work is not over once you’ve launched your coin. There are several additional steps you must follow on an ongoing basis to ensure your project’s success.
- PR and marketing strategy
Establishing an effective PR strategy should be a priority. Your investors should receive regular correspondence from you in the form of news and updates. Managing your social media strategy is an essential part or your ongoing PR too.
Your post-launch ICO promotion should include keeping the blog on your website updated with current events. Pin the latest updates to the top of the page and create informative content relating to the blockchain industry.
You may also decide to conduct an AMA, which stands for “Ask Me Anything.” These question-and-answer sessions allow investors and users to clarify any concerns they have.
Also, any post-launch ICO marketing information regarding your campaign should be posted on popular cryptocurrency blogs.
- Post-ICO management and product development
Once you have successfully launched your coin, begin to collect funds and funnel them back into your project. Make sure you are meeting all the milestones laid out in your whitepaper and provide regular progress updates to your community.
On your website, compare your progress to your roadmap to indicate you are either on or ahead of schedule. Provide evidence of your social media activity to show your investors and clients you care enough to keep them informed.
ICOs are a constant target for hackers, so implementing security protocols is essential. One of the primary goals of an ICO is to reduce the risk of cyber-attacks.
Have all the relevant technology and expertise in place to prevent hackers from gaining access to your investors’ and clients’ sensitive information or, even worse, their cryptocurrency accounts. Formulate a plan to deal with cyber-attacks so you can be prepared.
- Getting your coin listed
A crucial stage in the post-launch phase of your ICO promotion strategy is getting your coin listed on cryptocurrency exchanges as quickly as possible. Once your currency is listed, clients can purchase it to sell or trade.
Listing your coin is a delicate exercise that requires careful planning and a certain level of knowledge about the quirks of cryptocurrency. Tokens can quickly fall in price if the steps are not carried out in the proper order.
There are several cryptocurrency exchanges, although there are a far greater number of cryptocurrency tokens. Exchanges cannot possibly keep up with the continual flow of new cryptocurrencies launching ICOs, so they have to be selective about the currencies they list.
Exchanges take note of interest within the blockchain community. The more buzz and excitement you can create around your currency, the higher the likelihood of it being listed.
- Be unique and innovative
- Generate demand
- Prove it’s not intended for illegal activities
Some exchanges keep it simple. Poloniex doesn’t charge for listings, although developers need to have a verified account to be able to list their currency.
Bittrex charges fees for listings. The process is also more complex. You need to provide a wealth of information including the name of your currency and a detailed description. You also need to submit a coin trading symbol and a logo, as well as having a verified account.
Your post-launch marketing activities are equally as important as those you conduct before and during the launch of your ICO. Its success hinges on the effort you put in after launch to ensure all your processes and procedures are working in perfect harmony.
You must evaluate your project both before and after your campaign to assess the risks involved and formulate “what-if?” strategies to deal with them. You must also be completely transparent with your users and investors.
Finally, don’t overhype your project and then fail to meet your own lofty expectations. Create reasonable goals and achieve them all during the post-launch period.
Affiliate marketing is a technique where affiliates earn money based on the number of sales or leads they generate. Significant benefits of affiliate marketing include:
- Budget reductions – You only pay for ad clicks and conversions, saving you money. You can see who is viewing your ads and manage your budget easier.
- Fraud reduction – Increased transparency and improved tracking reduces fraud and eliminates potential disputes around payments.
- Big incentives – Cost Per Action enables you to pay for conversions only, encouraging both the publisher and advertiser to produce high-quality traffic.
- Instant payments – Many affiliate marketers use escrow accounts for immediate payments. Smart contracts release money when agreed actions are completed.
- Instant information – Advertisers receive instant information, eliminating the need to request and wait for performance reports.
ICO marketing FAQ
Q: What is ICO marketing?*
A: ICO marketing is the process of promoting an Initial Coin Offering or ICO to interested investors and clients via a range of online methods.
Q: How do I promote my ICO?*
A: Follow this guide step-by-step to promote your ICO. Alternatively, you can draft in the support of an ICO marketing agency like Lasting Trend.
Q: What’s the best ICO marketing strategy?*
A: There are no ICO marketing best practices. Try several different approaches to find the one that works for your ICO project. Social media and specialist discussion platforms are a great place to start.
Q: How much does it cost to launch an ICO?*
A: Listing ICO tokens can cost a pretty penny. According to a new blog by Autonomous Research, listing a token on a cryptocurrency exchange costs promoters anywhere between $1 million and $3 million.
Q: What is an ICO?*
A: ICO is an acronym for Initial Coin Offering. An ICO is a way for cryptocurrency developers to raise funds for their project by convincing investors to purchase units in exchange for established coins like Bitcoin or Ethereum. ICOs could revolutionize not just cryptocurrency but the whole financial system.
Q: How does an ICO work?*
A: Willing investors purchase a specific amount of the new cryptocurrency, usually at a substantial discount. Developers then plow the generated funds back into the project to help it grow. If the new currency does well and increases in value, investors can make a healthy return on their investment down the line.
Q: How does an ICO make money?*
A: An ICO doesn’t involve shares. Instead, companies raising funds via an ICO provide the blockchain market’s answer to a share — a cryptocurrency token.
In most cases, investors pay with a popular, existing currency like Bitcoin or Ethereum and receive the equivalent value of the new currency in exchange.
ICO promotion is not an easy process. You need to do a lot of work before even launching your token like writing your whitepaper, strategizing, and crowdfunding.
The team at Lasting Trend are experts in formulating an ICO marketing strategy. We understand the launch of an ICO can seem overwhelming, but it is easily manageable with the right processes and expertise in place.
You can’t do it alone. You need reliable partners you can trust and delegate marketing duties to. An ICO consulting firm or PR agency will play a vital role in your promotional strategy.
Following this ICO marketing guide, you can create a real buzz around your new cryptocurrency. If you would like to learn more about ICO promotion from an established service provider, contact Lasting Trend today.
March 26, 2019