16 Tips To Grow A Crypto Community
Building a community is not a sprint – it’s a marathon. It’s a long-term process, often taking years to succeed. Unfortunately, when projects start their journey in the decentralized space, they sometimes don’t realize how essential the crypto community’s proper growth is.
Hint: those who work only on the product won’t succeed. It may not be intuitive, but people that stay interested in your dApp can make a viral marketing effect that will promote your company.
I learned that in the past two years while managing over ten crypto communities. And I noticed that the community is not only an inherent part of each crypto project but also a genius “tool” to increase awareness regarding your product or the industry overall or get valuable feedback (which comes from pissed-off first customers).
Undoubtedly, the community is one of the essential things in your web3 project. But how to grow it efficiently? How to maintain engagement, even during the bear market? How to moderate the community? And how to improve?
This article shares 16 insights regarding growing a web3 community. After reading it, you will get a ready-to-implement list of growth hacks that prevent you from making common mistakes while building a community.
Let’s dive in:
1) You Can’t Manage The Community On Your Own
Managing a crypto community is a challenging task. It’s that tough, you cannot do it on your own as a Founder. We mention that many web3 entrepreneurs think they can do many things on their own. It’s impossible. Managing and moderating the community is a full-time job, not even for one person, but for 3 (or more).
Crypto doesn’t work like banks or the traditional stock market when the asset’s trading terminates at a particular hour. Crypto is an infinite loop of trading. Community members come from around the world and use crypto products 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year.
That’s why you need 3 (best option) moderators from different time zones that will help each other serve the community by replying to multiple questions and keeping the chat alive.
Rule #1: don’t try to “save” on community moderators. You can only focus on grinding the product when the mods care for the community.
2) Efficient Onboarding Flow
The next thing is the onboarding flow of new users. Let’s make a quick reference to the industry of startups from the traditional market. All of them come up with processes for different situations and try to design the path for the users. What does it mean?
For example, what the users do after specific steps in the mobile app. What they click first, second, or what they don’t click.
Such an approach gives you more control over the process and helps to identify the pain point potentially. It’s the best method to detect and solve the problem.
The same thing goes for web3 startups:
It would help if you design the onboarding path of your community members, meaning:
- where users can localize your company (i.e., on Twitter)
- what should they do next to become a part of the community (i.e., join Discord)
- what steps do they have to go through to join the server
- know if they give up after specific steps of verification
- if the new users are taken care
When a problem appears (i.e., no new members are joining the chat), you may notice a mistake.
For example, the verification on Discord needs to be simplified because most people that join Discord from Twitter give up on too complicated a process.
Rule #2: Design an onboarding flow for your users
3) Use multiple platforms
Let’s go next with different community-building platforms.
You need to know that one community platform is often enough because each has a different role.
Twitter is primarily used to spread the word about your project. The Twitter feed, ‘trending’ tab, and engaging below big accounts help you to grow, and people will start looking at your company’s account. With it, the users will start paying attention to your tweets and activity. That’s the first step.
But you have nothing from it if random folks following your account won’t use your product or get to know more about your company. That’s why you need closed communication channels whose role is to engage, educate, and answer questions. Examples? Telegram or Discord. After the user finds your company on Twitter, the next stage is becoming an active community member. It’s almost impossible via Twitter because the interaction methods of a single community member are limited to liking, commenting, and retweeting. On Discord, they can talk to moderators and exchange thoughts with founders, building long-term relationships.
Rule #3: define the goals of different community platforms and operate on different ones, not on a single one
4) It’s all about the engagement
Gathering the community around the project is one thing. You can do it with one good promotional video or article that will display on millions of devices worldwide. People will start following your account on Twitter and joining Discord.
But keeping these community members around is an entirely different thing.
You can have the best marketing, but it will be hard to survive if people won’t stay with your project and engage.
Crypto communities are very tribal. So if they see vast amounts of members and zero engagement, they would think, “this project is dead. I leave”.
The mechanism works like panic selling on the market – the more people start selling ( leaving the group), the more people will follow their actions.
That’s why you need to gather people around (first), and entertain them (second).
Don’t forget to put some gamification mechanisms in the dApp, like hidden features or tips of getting an airdrop.
Another thing to make the web3 community stay around your project is valuing their opinions and asking them for feedback. It’s worth seeking information that allows you to enter the next level. Also, don’t be afraid of asking the group members for help (when it comes to improving your dApp).
“Ok, but how to engage the community?”
- Organize contests
- Host AMA sessions (i.e., via Discord events or Twitter spaces)
- Provide a Real-Time-Experience (for example, the betting score of the World Cup football games)
- Put the polls so that the community can have an impact on the project
- Provide education (value) to the community, so people will stay with you
Use NFTs as gamified elements.
One of the best ways to engage community members is using gamification in the form of NFTs. How does it work? For example, you can reward a specific activity with the NFT. It can be participating in the AMA session, making a particular transaction volume, or being a chat member for at least 1 year. These NFTs can have different utilities, like access to private channels on Discord, discounts on fees, or exclusive videos with product updates.
The main point here is to make your company’s operations more fun and worth engaging from the side of community members.
It must be exciting and gamified, encouraging community members to engage even more.
Human instincts didn’t change in the last centuries. People love gathering things. We love growing a collection of something and sharing it later with other society members.
Examples? There you go:
- Sports Cards
- Post stamps
- Real Estate
You can collect anything.
From the brand perspective, getting the collector-type of the customer is liking a strike while bowling.
Such clients will come back for more to grow the collection.
There are NFTs in the crypto world, with the role of digital collectibles.
If you launch a campaign, people will keep returning until they raise all the possible NFTs.
Make it worth engaging.
Remember that the community members-crypto project relationship is always based on some exchange.
They engage because they want to give you more reach so that more people will buy the token, and it will increase in value.
There always has to be an incentive to engage.
Tip: The best platforms to host community-gamified activities with NFTs as rewards are:
- Layer3 – uncover web3 to crypto communities
- Guild.XYZ – design the tasks for your community
- Galxe.com – create a powerful experience with web3 credentials
Case Study: Coingecko
CoinGecko has one of the most popular mobile apps in crypto. They make tracking your portfolio and crypto prices easy and friction-free.
One of the most exciting mechanisms is the program in their mobile app, where people can collect candies that are later exchangeable for discounts, e-books, or tickets to events.
In other words, the deal is straightforward for community members: it’s worth engaging, so they will do it.
Rule #4: One thing is getting community members. The second thing is keeping them around.
5) Keep the community updated
One of the best ways to keep the community around and make them constantly excited about the project, especially if they are token holders, is to make regular updates on the product work.
It’s about sharing the progress with your community so they can see the efforts and the fact you are working in the background, even if the results have not been revealed yet.
You can choose different ways to provide updates:
- AMA sessions – hosted on YouTube, Twitter spaces, or Discord
- Weekly updates via telegram messages or Twitter threads
- Video updates
- Release notes
- Votings for new features
The form doesn’t matter that much.
What matters is showing progress.
Rule #5: keep the community up to date, and they will stay with you.
6) Make people compete with each other
It’s one of the best ways to keep engagement on Discord or Telegram chat. If community members compete against each other (in a positive manner, of course), the chat is on fire, and you don’t have to moderate the discussion.
What to do to reach that effect?
- Organize a contest in which people can get points.
- 1 like below the tweet = 1 point.
- Say that the TOP 50 people get on a Whitelist for the token pre-sale or NFT sale.
- Provide a leaderboard
People will compete against each other to rank as high as possible on the leaderboard. Such a thing will accelerate the discussion and engagement in your chat.
(plus, as you know, crypto communities are tribal – if the members see other members do things, they will join)
Rule #6: Make people compete against each other
7) Grow Ambassadors That Will Help The Moderators
The ultimate goal of growing a crypto community is always to get the TOP 50-100 active “soldiers” that will serve other community members and answer their questions even when they are not community moderators.
It’s about “raising” the ambassadors to support your mods in managing the community. Why is that important?
When new community members ask questions, and the moderator is not around, newbies won’t get a reply and will probably leave the chat or lose interest in the project.
“We can’t even get a response to my questions,” they would think.
When you have active ambassadors, they will not only support the moderators but also show new community members that the chat is “alive”, the project is not dead, and the community is active.
“If the community is strong, I will stay,” new members think.
Crypto is tribal, right?
Rule #7: Raise brand ambassadors to help the project grow.
8) Embrace Partnerships
The next thing is partnerships – one of the most powerful ways to grow the community. We are talking about “good partnerships”, which bring value to both companies.
Unfortunately, crypto is full of artificial partnerships, where companies exchange logos on their websites and social media channels. The cooperation does not benefit the token holders or community members.
How to fix that? And how the “proper” partnership can help you to grow the community?
As a crypto project, you must make new connections via online webinars, web3 conferences, summits, or crypto meetups. Find the same values with other projects, and organize an initiative to bring value to both communities.
Why is that important in terms of growing the community?
A well-conducted partnership brings the users from the other crypto project to yours. It can help you to grow and get new users.
Rule #8: embrace partnerships to grow the community.
9) Don’t let bots dominate your channels
That’s the hack nobody is talking about: if you organize the contests on your Twitter or Telegram, you are probably getting dozens of bot users.
As it’s almost impossible to automate the process of deleting the bots on Twitter.
However, it’s possible on Discord and Telegram.
But let’s start from the beginning: why don’t you want to have bot users in your community?
They are artificial, meaning they come only for money from contests but won’t leave the channel later when the contest ends. That said, the engagement rate will be much lower than before, which can discourage existing community members from participating in the discussion.
“There are so many community members, but only a small percentage is active.”
(most are bots, but how can they know)
How to prevent bots from getting into Telegram or Discord?
Provide vital gateways that will prevent bots from going into. For example, on Telegram, it can be a simple captcha verification. 99% of bots cannot overcome such an entry portal, so they won’t be able to join and dilute your engagement rate.
Rule #9: implement security portals so you won’t dilute your engagement.
10) Don’t reveal everything at once
Remember the bullet point about gamification? We talked about projects that need to make something to keep the community around. Remember, the community members stay active only if there is an incentive to do so.
To create an incentive, you can become mysterious and make the game tricky.
For example, there is a piece of information to reveal: you partnered with a well-known company. Instead of announcing it via one single post, you cant divide it into 4-5, that will make the community more interested, and they will wait for the announcement, meaning they will engage.
Here’s how you can do it:
Tweet 1: “Something is cooking!”
Tweet 2: Poll – guess with who we made a partnership (4 options to choose from)
Tweet 3: Partnership announcement
Tweet 4: “Tell us with what project we should make a partnership next.”
Rule #10: don’t say everything at once. Stay mysterious.
11) Be patient
If you already have your web3 project, you will know what we are talking about. Most often, the community members ask the same questions. Over and over again. However, instead of looking for an answer from previous messages or checking information on Twitter, they just put the question on the main chat.
Interestingly, the answers can be found in FAQ (frequently asked questions section) or Whitepaper, but most people will never check. They will keep asking. You have to prepare for the fact that stupid questions will appear.
Don’t get offended, and stay patient.
Answer every single question, even if it sounds stupid to you.
Rule #11: Foolish questions may appear, but answer them patiently.
12) Reward early community members
If you want to keep the sustainable growth of the community, you need to show the members how much you value them. One of the best ways to do so is by rewarding early community members or organizing simple contests with token rewards for new members.
One of the best case studies of rewarding early community members is organizing airdrops, which are nothing more than giving out tokens to the early users of your app, or dApp.
We made a comprehensive tutorial on which protocols can do airdrops, what are the best airdrop case studies, and how to prevent Sybil attacks (read here).
Rule #12: Reward community members
13) Have a brand ambassador
The main problem with crypto is that most things are running on the online layer. As a result, only a few interactions are running in the offline world.
Many teams of projects are anonymous, meaning there is no face with which community members can identify each other. There is no human aspect. And it’s terrible.
If you take the example of traditional enterprises, you will notice all the enterprises hire brand ambassadors.
Example: Coca-Cola and campaigns with celebrities.
As a result, people first buy the “stars” and then the drink.
Having a brand ambassador (a face of the company which the community can identify), will help you a lot.
Binance does this with the person of Chanpeng Zao. The trust is at the maximum level, then.
Rule #13: Hire a brand ambassador.
14) Have a brand enemy
Remember that building the crypto community is like playing chess. First, you need to know crypto communities’ incentives to understand how to make them engage in brand activities.
One of the best ways to gather people together (and make them engage) is to have the same enemy. The same enemy makes people stand behind the same values.
Look: most people need to be accepted by the group. Crypto is tribal. We said it three times.
The same enemy will make the community act like an army, fighting TOGETHER for the same values.
It could be perfectly seen when the main enemy of Binance became FTX – the exchange that traded with customers’ deposits and did other bad things.
The CEO of Binance, along with the Binance brand profiles, made people stand against fraud, lack of transparency, and uncertainty.
Such an “Event” made Binance even stronger (as the company).
Rule #14: Find the same enemy. It will make your community stronger as a group.
15) Don’t distance yourself from the community
And last but not least: don’t distance yourself from the community. It’s a fundamental rule that, if not adhered to, could result in your community not being engaged in brand activities.
Look: as humans, we like to stay with the same people as us. We prefer to stay in our comfort zone. That’s how the minds of 95% of people work.
If you lead a crypto project, it’s evident that as a founder, you have more know-how, money, and status than most community members.
However, creating a distance between you and your company and isolating yourself will have a poor outcome regarding growing the community.
Your goal is to appear only as a slightly more experienced person. You can talk to the community members during AMA sessions, reply in the Discord chat, and act normally.
We promise that the lack of distance will make the community close-knit.
If you behave equally, group members will respect you.
Rule #15: Don’t distance yourself from the community
If you already have (or plan) to launch your crypto community, you probably also have a token. If you need a market maker to provide liquidity for the token and conduct a successful listing, contact Empirica, and we will help you.