Over the last few weeks, the “Particl reboot” has been going full steam ahead. Shortly after raising funds from the decentralized treasury fund, the Particl team has set up a few initiatives in motion and been cranking up development!
In terms of significant milestones since, we find the long-anticipated Particl V3 mainnet release, Particl Core catching up to the latest Bitcoin version (0.22), the upcoming BasicSwap DEX nearing its open beta phase, and the reveal of a work-in-progress wallet: Electrum (with support for a Lightning Network user interface).
While all of these achievements are exciting from a technical standpoint, many in the community have been wondering: “But what about marketing?”. This blog post will answer that question in detail and clarify the team’s position and strategy as we progress onward.
Table of Contents
- Putting Marketing in Context
- Upcoming Marketing Initiatives
- BasicSwap; A Door Major Opener
- Community Empowerment
Putting Marketing in Context
First thing first, it’s essential to define what we mean by “marketing” to avoid any confusion. Marketing is an umbrella term that touches on brand awareness, PR, product placement, outreach, relationship building, and any other effort to gain adoption and new users or fans. It’s a wide range of actions converging towards making Particl more known, liked, and used.
Why do Marketing?
In the case of Particl, marketing has two clear objectives.
- Gain new users for Particl products (i.e., Particl Marketplace or BasicSwap)
- Increase the number of coin holders and project advocates.
For marketing to have any real impact on the course of the project, results need to be long-lasting. Any new user, coin holder, or advocate gained from any marketing campaign has to stick around for some time and be active within the ecosystem. When it comes to brand awareness campaigns, their message has to stick around and be clear.
This strategical and best value approach to marketing ensures that the project only spends resources towards effective initiatives rather than adopting a “spray and pray” strategy that can work for more prosperous projects, but at an extreme cost.
How to Achieve our Marketing Objectives?
To achieve the two objectives mentioned above, we use two fundamental approaches to marketing.
Product-focused marketing: Product-focused marketing puts the spotlight on what products the project offers and what benefits they give to targeted audiences. This aims at making people interested in the end products and is directly linked to adoption efforts.
Brand awareness and notoriety building: The other approach is to increase Particl’s brand awareness and notoriety. In other words, it’s about being part of “the discussion” and being a project that people know about even if they’ve never really used it. The more brand awareness and notoriety a project has, the more free coverage it gets and the faster its community grows.
These two approaches will be leveraged by different types of marketing campaigns (mentioned a bit further down this post).
How is Marketing Funded at Particl?
Particl is not an overly-funded project born out of an ICO or any other kind of crowdfunding mechanism. Instead, it’s a humble community project that operates out of voluntary community donations through a decentralized and democratic treasury system.
This means the project does not possess millions of dollars to pump into very large-scale marketing campaigns. It also means it cannot afford many of the “pay-to-play” marketing avenues that blockchain projects with deeper pockets usually leverage.
Additionally, because the team gets its funding paid in PART, and due to current low liquidity on trading exchanges for PART pairs, the team has to be very careful about how it spends marketing funds as to not cause any significant downward pressure, essentially nullifying any marketing gains.
Due to the current liquidity situation and the general costs of marketing within the blockchain industry, it’s important to keep expectations realistic and plan around that reality. That’s what the team has done with this marketing strategy.
That’s also why marketing is currently being deployed gradually and strategically, one initiative at a time. As we move forward in time, many initiatives will start stacking up and run in parallel, giving a better sense of being widespread.
Additionally, expectations need to match the status of each Particl product. Indeed, Particl V3, for example, is still a beta piece of software that can still be complicated to use for most people other than a few more technically apt niches. Mind you, that is alright and is part of the journey as Particl evolves to an ecosystem that’s much more user-friendly. Still, it also means that marketing the project towards audiences that are not ready to use the product might not be the most cost-effective strategy. Hence, selecting the right audiences to target is key.
Upcoming Marketing Initiatives
Now that we’ve mentioned all of the above considerations, it’s time to take a deeper dive into the various marketing initiatives that are planned or are in progress.
What we've done recently
Shortly before the release of Particl V3 on mainnet, we’ve re-initiated our newsletter communications. This aims to re-engage people who’ve shown interest in Particl in the past and stay connected with current fans. Direct mail marketing is a basic but powerful marketing tool and will be used sporadically (we won’t spam your inbox) for essential and bundled communications pieces.
If you still haven’t subscribed to our newsletter, don’t hesitate to do so; it’s the best way to stay in touch!
The Particl Academy is the user-friendly guide to get started with Particl and become more familiar with it. It’s a critical piece of information required for newcomers to be able to start using the platform without any hassle.
This can be the difference between someone interested but who gives up because it’s too difficult to get started and someone who sticks around. To browse the Particl Academy, simply head over to https://academy.particl.io/
The new development roadmap is not necessarily a marketing item in the proper sense, but it’s nonetheless a vital part of the marketing strategy. That’s because that is where new people usually look to see what’s coming up next for a project and what is its long-term viability.
The new roadmap was carefully crafted to make user adoption easier by improving the platform’s accessibility, usability, and user-friendliness. In addition, it communicates Particl’s long-term vision for its products and ecosystem, and helps get new passionate supporters to stick around for the long haul.
What's currently in progress
Particl’s new website (Particl.io) is set to become the cornerstone of any upcoming marketing effort. That’s because that’s where new people land when they first hear about a project or when they get curious about it through a marketing campaign they’ve been exposed to. That’s also why we’ve been waiting for its release before activating a few initiatives; we want Particl to look its best and tell its story the way it should. This will inevitably lead to better conversion rates!
On that note, we are excited to announce that the new website will go live this coming Tuesday, the 26th of October, 2021. So make sure to be around next week for its launch, we’re sure you’re going to be delighted by it and will want to show it to everybody!
Digital ads are helpful for two different reasons. For one, they can address both marketing objectives by being either product or brand-focused.
Secondly, they provide valuable data on the success of campaigns which allows us to test different messages and stories as well as different audiences. We can then use these data points to tune all other marketing campaigns and focus on what really works. The intel we can get out of digital ad campaigns is why we are already in the process of planning them and want to deploy them before a few other initiatives.
Preparations for digital ads have already begun, and this initiative will gradually ramp up within the next three months.
At this time, Particl’s blog almost only contains news and updates. While that’s interesting for those already a fan of the project, it doesn’t help convert new people into advocates or users. Having more story-driven content will help better explain Particl’s story and mission, define its brand, and put the spotlight on the bigger picture (why we do what we do and why you need it). Additionally, SEO-friendly story contents help drive more traffic to the website.
This initiative is currently in progress as we’ve started working with a few writers. Stories should soon start appearing on Particl News within their own dedicated “Stories” section. Make sure to have a read when you see a new story come out and share it with the people you think will be interested in it!
You might remember the Part-Time Show, the podcast by Particl ambassador Dr. Kapil. As part of the Particl reboot, we also thought of rebooting the Part-Time Show with it, only this time, differently. Leveraging the new interactive Clubhouse application, the new show will feature Dr. Kapil along with Joe Fisher, e-commerce expert.
It will talk about a wide variety of topics related to Particl, including e-commerce, privacy, data security, decentralization, the impact of distributed networks on democracy, economics, censorship, and much more. While not a Particl-centric show itself, the new formula of the show is going to be much more dynamic. It intends on building relationships and initiating thoughtful discussions with people who understand the critical and modern issues of today’s society.
Clubhouse can be defined as a mix between a podcast social media and LinkedIn. We hope that you join along the weekly episodes and participate in the discussion with us. You might just meet some fascinating folks! More information is to come about this in the next few days as we near the first episode.
To help with the many marketing tasks we have on our deck, a new team member will join the communications and marketing team in November. This new team member, which will mostly fill the role of a communications assistant, will be critical in allowing the team to deploy multiple initiatives in parallel and amplify our efforts.
Also to help with marketing and encourage community initiatives, the team will be setting up and deploying a community marketing budget very soon. At the time of this writing, a group has been formed on Element with a few community members eager to help spread the word and deploy initiatives of their own. A community budget intends on supporting these go-getters with resources from the team.
Lookup the Community Empowerment section of this blog post further down below for more information on how to get involved.
With the Particl reboot going on strong, there are a lot of things changing around the project and a ton to look out for. But with so much information, it’s possible that you may have some questions. So from time to time, the Particl team will run AMAs on its sub-Reddit and pin it so that anyone can ask their questions and have the answer displayed prominently for all others to see. This should help with transparency and circulating important information to the community.
What comes after
Distributing press releases in quality publications will lead to more organic coverage as editors and writers scout PR publications daily for exciting content.
With improving Particl's brand awareness in mind, appearing in more podcasts and interviews will help spread the Particl word further and expose the project to many more people.
For Particl to gain adoption, using the platform and understanding how to use it must be as easy as possible. Publishing more educational, informational, and technical documentation will help with that.
Crypto Twitter is where it's at, and Particl needs to have better exposure within that community if it wants to go viral. So improving Particl's social media exposure and taking part in the discussion is important and planned for the near future.
Because so much has changed with Particl V3, support for other coins is temporarily disabled. We plan on adding that feature back right after releasing the SMSG Manager (roadmap item). Integrating more coins and making it easier for their users to acquire PART increases the potential for adoption within these communities.
Getting listed on new exchanges is a no-brainer to improve liquidity, exposure and make the platform more accessible. The team is currently in negotiation with two exchanges and should have more news on the subject soon. More exchange listings are planned as long as the listing costs are reasonable, and the exchange can provide real value back to the project.
A few months ago, a CCS proposal that suggested seeding the marketplace with many listings was published (and funded). Adding thousands of listings will give the marketplace the boost it needs to get the ball rolling and become a vibrant e-commerce platform. This initiative is currently under active development.
It obviously doesn't stop here, but the team will work on the items mentioned above in the short to mid-term. If you have any marketing ideas or suggestions, feel free to reach out to the team to discuss them.
BasicSwap; A Major Door Opener
When it comes to product-based marketing, we usually think about Particl Marketplace because it’s the project’s flagship application; a one-of-a-kind decentralized and private marketplace like none other. But shortly, a new Particl-made product with excellent marketing potential will go live in open beta: BasicSwap.
As you might know by now, BasicSwap is a cross-chain and private decentralized exchange that uses atomic swap and the SMSG network. It lets two users who don’t know each other safely exchange cryptocurrencies from two different blockchains. BasicSwap is set to become a crucial aspect of the Particl ecosystem and, at the same time, the project’s marketing strategy.
Incidentally, speculation is the most popular and widespread use case for cryptocurrencies. And as it becomes increasingly difficult and burdening to register and trade on centralized exchanges, many people are starting to look for decentralized solutions to suit their needs. As a result, the market share of decentralized marketplaces and the number of users grows every day. That’s an excellent opportunity for BasicSwap and the Particl project!
BasicSwap’s unique propositions, namely that it is cross-chain compatible, private, has order books, and supports Monero, are sure to turn some heads. BasicSwap is indeed set to generate adoption for the Particl ecosystem just on its own, independent of any marketplace activity. But, then, as it becomes an integrated part of Particl Desktop, its users are likely to bleed into other applications (i.e., Particl Marketplace), making them users of the Particl ecosystem as a whole rather than just one specific app. That’s the beauty of an all-inclusive decentralized ecosystem of apps and Particl's vision slowly coming to fruitition!
In other words, the addition of BasicSwap is much more than just a new useful app; it’s a massive load of marketing ammo both for itself and the broader Particl ecosystem. So expect marketing to be adapted as such and keep it in mind when you talk about Particl to other people.
The best marketing tool for any crypto project is the power of its community. That’s why we want to encourage community initiatives as much as possible with a new dedicated budget!
Do you have any marketing, outreach, or PR initiative that you’d like to lead? Then simply reach out to the team on Element, Discord, or Telegram with a written proposal explaining your project. If it gets approved, you’ll be asked to publish it on the CCS. Once your proposal is live, the team will then fund it using its dedicated community budget.
Publishing community-led marketing initiatives on CCS ensures the maximum level of transparency, lets others see what kind of efforts are ongoing, and helps determine what can people do to help. We highly encourage you all to participate; the more of us that spread the good word, the further it reaches!
Note 1: Keep in mind that we constantly receive many ideas with varying levels of detail. Before reaching out, make sure to think of all the details and write them down in your proposal. You also need to be able to lead that initiative yourself or delegate tasks on your own. The team can provide you with funding in PART and help you get started, but community-led initiatives are ultimately headed by whoever makes a proposal.
Note 2: If you have suggestions or marketing ideas you may not have the time to lead, don’t hesitate to contact the team regardless. We’ll determine whether the idea is viable and if it is possible to integrate it within our workflow.
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The entire team is excited to jump into a new phase for the Particl project. With a solid foundation having been laid down with Particl V3, it’s time to build on top of it, expand the ecosystem, and let it be known to the world.
We thank you for your support, passion, and understanding of the current marketing situation. But now is go time, so let’s get going!
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