Harnessing the power of a web3 community is a major strategy that significantly scales crypto brands. However, starting and sustaining an active one requires a high-level understanding of the crypto industry and how to tweak it in your favour. In this piece, we will guide you on key elements and tricks that a project needs to integrate to build a vibrant community.
Here's a TL;DR
- A Value Filled Founder/Team, Clear Vision, Memes
- Right Communication Channels
Learn more below.
Why You Need To Grow Your Web3 Community
Growing a crypto project’s community typically composed of Millennials and Gen Zers may seem like a daunting task, especially since the crypto industry defies over 70% of traditional marketing strategies.
Because we've become so used to the dominance of web2 patterns, many crypto projects are building their community the wrong way by following the same old scripts. While web2 emphasizes the importance of having great products for your project to attract a community, web3 provides an even better dominant approach.
And besides, potential members of a crypto community are folks who value certain fundamentals that a web2-driven approach can not provide. As a result, building a web3 project’s community with these fundamentals can compound into accelerated growth.
As a founder, focusing more attention on your product offerings and reducing community growth efforts for the short term may seem like a great option when starting out. But in fact, the opposite is true.
Fuelling your community growth in the early stage of your project enables you to kill three birds with one stone - test for product-market fit, improve the product itself and grow your community while at it. If your vision seems appealing, your community-building efforts will attract not just potential users, but talents that will help in building your project (for free) into an amazing solution.
3 Key Fundamentals That Will Boost Community Growth
In building a web3 community, the critical component is not in numbers but in true believers that are willing to contribute their expertise to a project’s growth. There are a lot of projects that have attracted thousands of community members but with little impact on their growth.
You don't want to build a gathering of people. Rather, you want to build a community of developers, designers, talents and small businesses that can help catapult your project to the next level. However, to attract such community members, your project must be built on the core tenets that make web3 attractive to these people in the first place:
1. A Value Filled Founder/Team, Clear Vision, Memes
People don't necessarily identify with projects and their products. Instead, they follow thought leaders, influencers, memes, founders & their vision. Web2 companies employ influencer marketing to help them bridge this gap as followers of their chosen influencer naturally become part of their community.
Traces of such practice is also visible in crypto projects like Doge (with Elon Musk) and the Bored Ape Yacht Club (with celebrity figures like Snoop Dogg, Neymar Jr., Justin Bieber, etc.). However, unlike web2 companies that pay influencers to help boost their community, crypto projects attract them - just like every other community member - organically.
By having a clear vision and roadmap often documented in whitepapers, cultural-themed memes, and relentless commitment from founders and their core teams, these projects automatically set themselves up for success.
The Doge meme caught up with Elon Musk in 2020 and since then his influence has brought over 4 million members into the Dogecoin community. Ethereum entered the crypto market in 2015 with a clear vision of becoming the first world decentralized computer and attracted thousands of developers. Bored Ape founders showed no relenting in their continued efforts to build new projects that ultimately benefit members of the BAYC. In turn, Bored Apes have become the holy grail of the NFT market.
2. Right Communication Channels
Now, you have all the incentives aligned to attract a community of believers that are ready to build alongside you and your team. The next step is to decide the social media platforms that suit the community members you are aiming to onboard.
Popular social channels utilized in the web3 industry include Discord, Twitter, Telegram, Reddit, etc. Choosing one of these platforms to organize your community is a perfect start. But you also want to keep the community engaged through activities like
Cross-audience partnerships, etc.
Every web3 concept is geared towards having a decentralized form of current world industries. For example, DeFi is typically for decentralized finance, DAOs are for decentralized organizations, NFTs for decentralized ownership, GameFi for decentralized gaming, etc. The people in web3 are here because of the promise of a decentralized future. And if your project doesn't contribute to fulfilling that promise, they'll most likely see no reason to engage with your community long-term.
Traditional web2 mentality says "build it and they will come." And many web3 founders and their core teams go ahead with this mentality to build their projects. However, they later struggle to attract that believing community that will naturally evangelize the solution their project offers.
"Build in public together with the community"
Your potential community members aren't after just the product and its amazing features - they can easily get that from web2 companies. In web3, communities are motivated by firstly a project's vision and roadmap, how it involves them and what they get in return.
They are interested in contributing to the building phase as it allows them to be among the highest beneficiaries if your project becomes a success. But how does your project's success benefit them? Decentralized ownership.
One of the best ways to attract a community of believers who are ready to preach the gospel of your project is by employing a good tokenomics design that ensures people who contribute to its growth get rewarded with a core token in the project's ecosystem. This may be a native token, an NFT, or a governance token that gives them voting rights on the project's future.
The token acts as an incentive for them to make valuable contributions to the project that will, in turn, increase their token's value. This gives a compounding effect to your community-building efforts as community members would want to stay long-term to ensure the project is successful - because they don't want their previous contributions to go to waste and the value of their tokens to diminish.
When web2 platforms start out, they target most of their efforts to recruit the best entrepreneurs, businesses and developers to collaborate with them and build on top of their platform. This enables them to scale up in less time. However, as they grow over time, their relationship with businesses, developers and entrepreneurs shifts from complement and collaboration to competition.
As a web3 platform, you can attract the best entrepreneurs, developers, talents and third-party businesses in the long run by offering them the direct opposite. That is, as you scale over time, their ownership grows, fueling more collaborations and partnerships.
The Bitcoin network followed the same pattern.
Most top individual bitcoin whales of today were early contributors to the Bitcoin-talk forum. They were either miners who committed their PC processing power to mine thousands of bitcoins at the time. Or core believers who committed their time, skills and funds to help the network stand. In return, the success of Bitcoin made them millionaires as they became owners of most bitcoin tokens.
All these wouldn't have happened if Bitcoin was an already made product with the CEO as Satoshi Nakamuto. The effect of decentralized ownership through mining, among other factors, was core in making the Bitcoin protocol attractive. Satoshi is nowhere today to advocate for Bitcoin. Yet, you'll find millions of people with laser eyes pfp preaching the Bitcoin gospel on Twitter.
While these activities are working quite well currently, you must pay attention to key trends and the ever-changing needs of web3 folks to help you effectively manage the community.
Do you want to take the next steps?
Here's a quick summary
- Make your vision and roadmap plain.
- Dish out consistent value to your community.
- Make your project idea stick by adding meme culture.
- Keep things as decentralized as possible.
- Build in public together with the community.
- Ensure your project doesn't run with a CEO. Rather distribute ownership among community members based on their contribution.
- Employ the right communication channels and keep the community engaged.
You can also reach out to our talented team to help you get started on how you can build your web3 community and scale up in no time.