Three Ways Comms Can Set Crypto and Blockchain Projects Up For Success
Ever since cryptocurrencies entered the mainstream in 2009, blockchain evangelists have been pushing for their adoption in payments and lending, even touting their ability to battle electoral fraud by promoting their features of immutability and trust. This has come to form the basic pitch for cryptocurrencies repeated by established names such as Bitcoin and over 5,000 other ‘altcoins’ circulating in crypto-exchanges today.
What started as a utopian promise to secure both social and commercial transactions has, however, been undermined by bad press on fake ICO projects and cybersecurity breaches on cryptocurrency exchanges. Additionally, the proliferation of cryptocurrencies has led to a situation where the significance and impact of any one cryptocurrency launch is diluted – not helped by the fact that more than half of the world’s top 100 cryptocurrencies have no ‘real life’ utility.
If cryptocurrencies are to live up to their promise of being a trusted medium for transactions, it is important that crypto-entrepreneurs recognise that the seemingly simple exercise of ‘building trust’ cannot be done overnight, nor can it come from talking about the emancipatory aspects of the technology. Instead, a good starting point is having a targeted public relations (PR) and communications strategy that cuts through the noise and differentiates one cryptocurrency from another, in layman’s terms, as a credible and tangible solution to a challenge.
Cutting Through the Noise Using Thought Leadership
Using communications to position yourself as a thought leader is a good way of establishing credibility and expertise in the field. However, to do this successfully you need to work with a partner who understands the landscape in which you are operating. Today, everyone can be a cryptocurrency entrepreneur, and media fatigue sets in when everyone promises to solve the world’s toughest problems. With the boom of the industry, the number of crypto media has grown exponentially, with some outlets run professionally, while others are often flippant about the process of journalistic writing.
We operate in an industry that is prone to sensationalism and a communications partner will help you identify gaps and opportunities in the crypto industry narrative. This will allow you to drive conversations that highlight the impact you are making and the tangible benefits of your solution. At the same time, having PR support will also enable you to be savvier in your dealings with the media, reducing the likelihood of bad press, and ensuring that you land your key messages in the media outlets your target audience are reading, in an effective and credible manner.
Intelligent Insight Across the Region
While Asia’s crypto industry remains a highly contested space, it is very fragmented with the adoption of cryptocurrencies and regulation of the market moving at different paces in different countries.
For example, India has adopted a haphazard stance towards regulation. Previous proposals to stop banks from serving crypto companies have been put on hold, with the Supreme Court of India repealing the Reserve Bank of India’s ban, while countries such as Japan and South Korea have been quite receptive to crypto projects. Similarly, business sentiment also appears to vary, with a leading Asian blockchain entrepreneur expressing the sentiment that ‘Thailand’s regulatory framework had the right balance of innovation and regulation as opposed to Singapore, which appeared to be more laissez faire in its approach’.
As crypto exchanges operate without borders, it is important that any new launch takes into account the different realities that exist in a highly dynamic region. Often, a good PR consultant will serve not just as a communications advisor, but also a business advisor, helping you understand in-market nuances and key regulatory shifts. Strategic advice like this can help you engage with the local media in a more effective and targeted manner.
Establishing Credibility Through Challenging Interactions
In any business, reputation is key. When launching a crypto project, you should expect difficult questions around regulations, security, and viability.
Be prepared to expect the unexpected – a crisis can happen anytime, even prior to the launch. Indeed, recent reports suggest that ‘cryptojacking’ – the act of hacking a device to secretly mine cryptocurrencies – is on the rise in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Your communications partner can help your navigate your way through these murky waters, by limiting reputational damage through dealing with any unfounded claims and attacks on social media that can significantly impact the public’s perception of your company.
Establishing credibility, providing expert insights, and preparing for challenging questions are some of the essential facets of PR that are crucial for a crypto launch. Communications is a strong asset that can help to drive your brand narrative from the get-go, ensuring that the ensuing awareness and perception is positive and well-cultivated.