Marketing Ideas

Just throwing this out there, but I think it might be good to have a thread focused on marketing the Internet Computer.

This doesn’t seem to be a strength of Dfinity right now, and maybe some creative ideas could help from the community that wants to see this succeed.

If you have well thought out and realistic ideas, please share your thoughts.

  • Be as precise and clear as possible
  • The less burden on Dfinity, the better
  • Extra hearts for creativity
7 Likes

Probably not a bad idea for all of us to continue sharing this with people and channels:

2 Likes

The biggest power of Internet Computer is the developer base we have, one idea I have is to use testimonials, videos, referrals of our existing community & create a huge word of mouth wave to create noise in the developer circles - both Web3.0 & Web2.0

7 Likes

I wrote something on Taggr about CryptoMiso rankings a while ago. I don’t think they paint an accurate picture of how active projects are.

The good news is, there’s probably more activity that isn’t included and that seems like an opportunity.

1 Like

I appreciate the correction.

The IC is world-wide, the developers, ICP holders, enthusiasts could benefit from “regional” meetups hosted in some of the major hubs/cities.

I could see this building and strengthening bonds and new friendships centered around the IC.

I see new ideas springing to life from the conversations, community/public awareness of the project increasing and life long friendships made…. Ideally the best spot for these regional meetups would be a “happy hour” at the local pub/bar. The bubbles in your drink really do help great minds collaborate on new ideas.

In politics - I believe it’s called grassroots marketing.

1 Like

Absolutely, @shruti. Here’s one more post from reddit as an example.

"I have a Masters in CS with my entire history(1+ yr) on reddit based on ICP with ~1000 karma points. I also am a member of the 8year gang.

I thought it was simply cool to build on IC & I got to learn a new language(rust). There are aspects to IC that only an imaginative brain could bring into it.

I would have never thought how AN APP built on top of IC (SNPR) will eventually replace XMR (Monero).

I would have never thought how ECSDA and Https Requests would help AN APP built on top of IC would let us replace LINK (idea is courtsey lastmjs on twitter).

Personally i dont think that banks and govts have a clue onto ICP. They are just too slow for the digital age"

1 Like

Based on feedback I’ve seen with my involvement in other communities I would like to suggest that anyone organizing a meetup should consider choosing inclusive venues.

Bars and pubs prevent otherwise interested people of a certain age from attending. There are other reasons too, in my experience.

3 Likes

I’ve attended a few meetups where it’s usually an open bar venue , people just come and hang out and order their own drinks.

Worth trying out for sure to rally the community! @DHemingway @mparikh if you guys are up for it we can try in our cities.

I think you are right with the inclusive venues, we wouldn’t want age limit’s to deter community participation. My reasoning behind a regional bar/pub community meetup was to bridge the language gap if there was any - from my past experiences with my colleagues that only speak Mandarin or Swiss/German and do not speak English very well and vice versa, the bubbles help bridge the language barrier and the bar napkins are perfect for drawing pictures to help communicate.

As a business leader in my community in the states, we utilize the Chamber of Commerce network in a similar fashion as a way to organize networking events or educational meetups for specific topics of interest (technology, healthcare, etc.). Most regional chamber’s are more than happy to publicize the event to the their business member communities and are open to the public as well and doesn’t usually cost anything because it serves as a community benefit. I have not heard of anyone from the crypto community trying to utilize the chamber of commerce this way - but it could be a good idea to bring blockchain enthusiasts, the public and business leaders together.

1 Like

This Twitter thread made me wonder if this thread is intended to be about marketing or advertising.

Thanks @Jonathan for initiating this thread. It’s really great to see these incredible ideas coming from the community. This post also triggered me to share some of my own thoughts on where I see we stand today and how can we start incorporating some of these community ideas.

As a quick background, I am the VP of Growth at DFINITY. My team is responsible for helping build our developer ecosystem, manage our grants program amongst other things. The notes below are just my opinion and I am using this as a way to seek more inputs from the community.

As a growth focused person, I always think of things in the form of flywheels. So my thought process has always been to create core growth flywheels for IC.

Here is one core growth flywheel we are chasing right now:

  1. Attract Entrepreneurs/Developers —>
  2. Help them become successful (technical support, grants/funding, UI/UX, PR, marketing, etc.) i.e. help them get to a point that they can build a vibrant user community around their product (and eventually becomes a self sustaining economy) —>
  3. Showcase their success stories (social, press, interviews, community) i.e help the teams attract more users and help IC attract more Entrepreneurs/Developers —>

(Back to step 1. Rinse and repeat)

tl;dr - IC is going to be successful once the entrepreneurs/developers building on IC are successful in attracting/retaining users and created sustained economic activity.

Now to bootstrap this flywheel, we have to think of all the ways we can attract a critical mass of entrepreneurs/developers on IC. Hence, the first problem we as a community need to solve is how to drive “Awareness + Interest” around IC?

In my mind building “Awareness + Interest” is a function of the following things:

1: Helping find a true product market fit

2: Crafting the right message

3: Building channels to constantly deliver that message

#1: Helping find a true product market fit:

Ensuring that what we are building is solving a real pain point. In our case it involves constantly talking to developers and understanding “Why” they are here to build on IC. I wouldn’t talk too much about this topic as I believe lot of us understand this reasonably well.

#2: Crafting the right message:

There have been constant iterations within the foundation around communicating the value proposition of IC more effectively. Website, documentation, 20 year roadmap, sample code , whitepapers, academic publications, infographics, videos, workshops, community conversations, Twitter spaces, et al.

Now each of these are catered towards a slightly different set of audience personas but the underlying theme has always been to communicate the various aspects of the IC out in the world across a varied set of audience. Here is my personal assessment of where we stand (not necessarily the opinion of the foundation):

  • +ve: We have been constantly improving and now have a reasonable ability to constantly bring out foundational content available out in the open.
  • Scope for improvement: Content does not mean solid messaging.

Let’s zoom into what is the challenge here?

IC is very different from anything else out there (alien tech!) and it is reasonably non-trivial to explain it ELI5. After all as humans we make our mental models to describe anything new by finding a comparable. Now as a community we have all been making attempts. Few describe IC as a decentralized cloud, some others describe it by the things that have been made possible on IC, another few by focusing on speed like comparing TPS metrics across chains and some others describe it by the novel tech innovation it brings to the world.

Note that there are no right or wrong answers here. Having said that we certainly need as much of a crystal clear messaging as possible to help scale. One thing is for sure, we need to focus more on highlighting benefits vs. talking about features (and I understand it is easier said than done but we need to continue iterating).

Lets take a couple of illustrative examples:

  • When we talk about “Reverse Gas” (feature)…the benefit is that a user doesn’t need to have tokens in their wallet when they are liking/commenting on a socialFi app like Distrikt
  • NFT’s are completely stored on chain (feature)… the benefit could be that you can now imagine the entire games or specific levels of games as an NFT and not just a simple jpeg.

To be honest, I have learnt about these benefits during conversations with different members in the community. We at the foundation are constanly learning about new and better ways to communicate.

This is one area where I think the community can help. Let’s all iterate to refine the core messaging of IC. We need to highlight the key benefits lot more effectively… from http calls to tECDSA to BTC integration, etc.

# 3: Building channels to deliver the message:

Now lets take a deeper dive into few of the channels and where (I think) we stand today.

- Word of Mouth:
- +ve: Lot of IC growth is organic. We are seeing a constant influx of entrepreneurs/developers and users experimenting with IC. Public repos, canisters are scaling well.
- Scope for improvement:
- Effective tooling to measure the word of mouth viral co-efficient.
- More traction for IC ecosystem projects (more successful they are the stronger the word of mouth)
- Initiatives where the community can help:
- Build awesome products with viral features (more users —> more attention to IC). The best way is to show (not tell) of what IC is capable of doing.
- [Open for suggestions]

- PR:
- +ve: TBH we need to improve a lot here
- Scope for improvement:
- Significantly better media relations (journalists who understand IC and can cover updates)
- Crafting better messaging and PR pitches for core platform releases as well as ecosystem updates.
- Data driven new story opportunities (media covers breaking news and not features)
- Initiatives where community can help
- Help craft better elevator pitches for ecosystem projects
- Analyze public data (and possible compare with other ecosystems) to create media friendly articles
- Thought leadership via guest posts in top media outlets
- [Open for community suggestions]

- Social + Content Marketing
- +ve:
- Strong traction (and constantly growing) on owned channels - Reddit, Twitter, YT, CMC etc
- Significantly reduced FUD on owned channels like r/dfinity, twitter, etc. (a huge round of applause for Diego and our community support team)
- Scope for improvement:
- We need to have a better representation in external communities (for instance, r/cryptocurrency, etc.)
- Initiatives where the community can help
- Help break into external communities with thoughtful arguments (not shilling without substance)
- Help translate IC related content in multiple languages
- [Open for community suggestions]

- Partnerships:
Some additional background as it was suggested by community members on Twitter thread. The foundation had multiple early level conversations with large brands, enterprises, consulting firms, etc. Getting access is not any challenge instead it is a matter of prioritizing based on the bandwidth we have available. Very much open to community inputs here.
- +ve:
- Key focus so far has been on financial exchanges where we have made some good traction.
- Scope for improvement:
- Prioritizing/resources
- Initiatives where the community can help
- Big Brands: Most brands are looking for solution partners and creative agencies/consulants before they think about the technology stack. The foundation has more R&D focus. We believe the community entrepreneurs are best positioned to recruit brands, top artists, etc. and bring them to the IC ecosystem.
- [Open for community suggestions]

- Events/Speaking Engagements
- +ve: TBH we have a lot to improve here. We are very early
- Scope for improvement:
- Effective filtering of events
- Better planning, early outreach (resource have been a challenge)
- Initiatives where the community can help
- We need more and more people talking about IC at events
- Help access to strong events
- [Open for community suggestions]

- Ambassador Programs
- WIP (more details will be shared soon)

My thoughts here are by no means comprehensive but treat them as where the current gaps are in my opinion. We can significantly accelerate the adoption of IC is by collaborating and filling the gaps.

What Next?
I would propose the formation of working groups focused on these topics where we can brainstorm and make tangible progress towards these goals. Over the next couple of weeks we will map out things internally and reach back out with the next steps.

4 Likes

Not bad.

5 Likes

This is true to a degree, but it is also the case that the IC does not have good spokespersons. Look at how articulate Charles Hoskinson is, for instance, he speaks beautifully in a manner that anybody vaguely knowledgable about blockchain can understand, with no hemming and hawing. If I didn’t know better, he would have convinced me that Cardano represents a true breakthrough.
Of course, these are not skills that can be entirely taught, natural talent plays a role, but Dfinity spokespersons don’t even seem to have the ELI5 audience in mind when they address audiences or give interviews. They could overcome some of their defects as speakers if they really tried to make their message clear.
When I want to provide links that explain the IC’s potential to acquaintances, I choose Olaf Carlson-Wee’s interviews over anyone at Dfinity. He’s lucid, eloquent, and doesn’t get into the weeds of the tech which very few people are interested in. He sticks to the big picture and stresses what the IC can do that other networks cannot. He’s a better promoter of the IC than anybody at Dfinity by a wide margin.
The first step to improving is acknowledging there is a need to improve. I am not sure if faces of Dfinity like Dominic Williams are there yet.

4 Likes

Agreed Dfinity needs someone to do what Hoshkinson did for Cardano or Antonopolous did for BTC. I have the background to understand Dom, but as you said a non technical person might be lost, plus some of the points Dom nakes in favour of ICP are barely expanded upon and don’t quite convince me.

I still haven’t heard a rock solid explanation on why Blockchain Singularity is actually achievable and desirable for tech companies, he mentions tech stack being too complex and high costs for maintenance and security, things I don’t believe ICP will completely solve.

4 Likes

Thanks to @mparikh this was just a start - need to keep doing more of these community led initiatives!

A recent Harvard Business Review article suggests that Google Glass could have been innovative, but that it suffered from a lack of effective marketing. To succeed at innovation, argues the author, “companies must put as much energy and investment into marketing new offerings as they do in generating them.”

I wonder… which organization or industry is in most immediate need of unhackable IC canisters? :thinking:

1 Like

This is maybe an unpopular opinion, but I believe the IC does not need any better marketing that it has now. Just implement what you’ve promised to implement (mainly, BTC integration), tell everyone about it as simple as possible, and the next bull run will make the magic happen.

The most good thing that you can do from marketing point of view, IMO, is to find ways of explaining the IC to non-technical people.

I’m in no sense a marketing specialist, ignore me, if what I say feels wrong.

5 Likes

These are some of the things this thread is soliciting specific ideas for.

3 Likes

Thanks for the feedback. In my view each person has a unique style of communicating and it’s hard to agree if one style is better than another. For instance, I was personally driven to IC because I was influenced by Dom and the research talks on YT (as it convinced me that this project has real substance). For others it may be a completely different narrative (say something presented by Olaf or someone else). That’s why we need a lot more voices in the community sharing the IC narrative.

Again I am not saying we have nailed out the narrative fully yet but rather quite the opposite. We need to keep iterating.

One perspective (as shared by @senior.joinu in the comments below) that I completely agree with is let our work do the talking. When people experience impressive use cases being built on IC (benefits) there may be less of a need to explain details about the protocol to the world.

3 Likes