Facebook’s decision to ban cryptocurrency and ICO related ads will have real implications for entrepreneurs seeking to launch token sales…
Facebook has already said that they will revisit this policy and that the initial version was intentionally broad, the idea being that the company will refine a more nuanced approach over time–yet another example of the incredible fluidity of the crypto world at the moment. Until then (and likely after), there’s a lot for blossoming ICO’s to consider.
To help blockchain entrepreneurs negotiate this brave new world, here are four main implications of Facebook’s decision:
Community building pre ICO just got harder. An ICO’s success depends partly on the strength of a company’s community. Everyone knows that Facebook ads that took users to landing pages where they’d be prompted to give up an email address were a key tactic in email list and community building. This cornerstone now gone, ICO teams will need to find new ways to get people into their funnels.
Increasing importance of PR. Earned media coverage pre-ICO has always been a key part of generating awareness, establishing credibility and community building. In a no-Facebook ad universe, this channel will now have to shoulder a heavier burden. It means entrepreneurs have to either find more effective ways to conduct their own media relations or get better at finding the right agency partners. The bottom line is that money spent on PR needs to return more than it previously did.
Telegram groups, boards and Reddit matter more. As with PR, tried and true channels such as Telegram groups, Internet chat rooms, and Reddit will now matter more than they previously did for getting the word out.
A healthier environment for ICOs. Truth be told, the ability to blanket the world’s most popular social network with ads had led to numerous dodgy projects raising significant funds. While Google’s decision to ban ads by payday lenders suggests that people can and will find a way around a behemoth’s attempts to regulate behaviors, perhaps now the Wild West will be a little less wild.
So what can you do?
If you decide to go the PR route to combat the crypto ad ban, it will be all the more important to do it right. ICOs are big news these days, which is both a good and a bad thing. You need to stand out from the competition while also gaining the public’s trust and interest.
For example, focus on the initiative(s) the ICO will fund, not the iCO itself. The media aren’t going to be impressed by the mechanism but the planned outcome and the problem your project solves. Having a prototype is critical, even if unpolished it strengthens your story, and demonstrates that your idea is more than a concept.
Clarity and transparency regarding your ICO roadmap and team are crucial. It is vital to demonstrate a feasible, well thought out plan and to have a qualified and trustworthy core team and advisors that can deliver.
Guest post: Jackson Wightman, Allison Aitken and Borjana Slipicevic are partners at Proper Propaganda, a PR agency that helps technology companies craft and spread their stories.