Akasha Indream is an advisor to Wizebit.com, a founding member and Engagement Director of IoMob.net, and founder of MissBlockchain.Tech and WIBI.io – a 500 strong women in blockchain Telegram group.
Before buying any token off an exchange, most crypto enthusiasts you’ll watch on online advocate a quick check of a its social media stream on Coin Market Cap or similar website. With the current industry success rate of blockchain startups post ICO claimed at being around 8%, the average investor wants to know: Is the team still alive? Are there recent news announcements? Do they have a cohesive marketing strategy that makes it seem like they know how to bring their white paper roadmap to life?
So it’s a fundamental need for any ICO to develop strong and regular social media presence with a flair unique to you. The end customer buying your coin, whether at ICO or off the exchange, is going to want to know who you are, what you are doing, what your recent achievements are, whether you will carry through with your roadmap, and they also want to see you have an active and engaged community interacting with you positively online.
Yet, it’s easy for entrepreneur startups, without social media experience or a marketing budget, to make some fairly basic mistakes that will continue to impact them negatively during and post ICO. This article is going to help you avoid the most fatal ones that will cause you more pain later than you might expect.
Make all your social media handles the same (if possible)
We have all experienced the frustration of when the exact handle we want that matches our business name is taken on one but not all social media platforms we are wanting a presence on. Why, Oh Why? (Even at MissBlockchain, our Twitter handle is different to our Instagram, Reddit, Medium and Facebook – ho hum, such is life.)
But as a cryptocurrency, you have to be extra careful to make sure they are all the same if at all possible. If you can’t do that, think about whether this really is the perfect brand name for you, or if there might yet be something else better out there that more uniquely represents your brand message.
Why having consistent social media handles for ICOs is important
Think about it. You’re starting a new currency. A new system of value that you want to last (hopefully) for at least your lifetime and probably more. Currency used to be represented by faith in commodities (real things) then faith in governments, and now faith in ideals. So you want those ideals to be represented consistently. People are going to be investing their millions into you. You want them to feel like they are secure.
And it makes sense, when you are doing your advertising, your pitches, and your presentations, to simply be able to show a card that has the one @handle. It makes it easy for people to follow you simply by typing in your brand name. Rather than having to try and remember each of your different handles for each different platform, you make at least this one thing easier for them, (making things easy is the first principle of growth hacking 101).
Protecting against Brand Theft
But there’s even a more serious reason for social media consistency. Even before ICO launch, there will be scam syndicates who have got wind of you, and are already issuing Twitter and Telegram accounts asking for Ether donations in return for (supposedly) sending out an airdrop of your tokens. I promise you, they won’t. But they will pretend to be your coin anyway, using your logo and a variation of some kind on your social handle.
It’s best to make things simple for your future supporters and investors, and make your social media handle a one-stop-shop. People who are familiar with your coin will know that if a message isn’t coming from that one handle, it’s not you. The unwary crypto rookie- well, once burnt, twice shy. If you use different handles on different platforms, you won’t be able to generate that level of investor confidence otherwise possible that lasts and lasts into the future.
So the other question to ask is, if there’s a social media platform where the handle you want is already taken, who has it? You might find it’s already a copycat version of your ICO that needs to be taken down immediately and there’s no time to waste.
What to do if your ICO name is already being scammed
Just because there’s already copycat scammers out there on Twitter, Facebook, or Telegram doesn’t mean you have to leave them there. That’s absolutely the wrong thing to do if you want investors to believe in you. Ignoring them and pretending they aren’t there is one of the worst things you can do, because it makes them more brazen to try more and more outlandish scams against your good reputation. And they will. And your community will notice and think you either don’t care, are a scam yourself, or are too inexperienced to pay attention.
That’s when you call in the experts, someone like Elad Schulman, CEO and Co-Founder of Segasec.com, a cyber-security startup from Tel-Aviv focused on helping ICOs stay protected from phishing scams trying to steal their ICOs. Segasec proactively detects impersonations to the ICO in various channels (websites, Twitter, Telegram, Medium, Facebook, Google ads, and more), before they reach the end-users, and is working to take them down before anyone is scammed.
I spoke to Elad Schulman, about the importance of maintaining a strong frontier against the threat of brand-theft and impersonations, and he says:
“It is more than just protecting the token sale itself, which is what most ICOs are concerned about. It is not even just about maintaining and increasing your token value, which can get compromised because of scams. It is about protecting your brand, that you are working so hard to build. It is about avoiding any legal and privacy issues, which are becoming a big concern for companies all over the world these days. If you don’t manage yourself carefully, it can all be gone, and all that hard work you have invested can go down the drain, not to say a lot of money”.
If you are spending tens or hundreds of thousands in marketing during an ICO campaign, or post release of your blockchain product, it makes sense to take simple steps now to secure the brand name you are investing so much value into.
I know it’s a great temptation as a time-poor startup to go with a promotions house that offers a complete social media solution – but anyone who looks at these things regularly can see the difference between a team who cares about their startup and an outsourced social media that is simply meeting the daily KPI. The former attracts far higher levels of engagement because your community knows there’s a real person behind the posts and that you care – and as such is one of the best ways to future proof the value of your token.
So, take some tips from a pro – make your Social Media personal and unique. Make it consistent. And make it secure.
Need to know more? Email akasha AT indream.co