After quietly flying below the radar since December 2017, initial exchange offerings (IEOs) have suddenly picked up a great deal of interest in Spring 2019. If you are considering an IEO for your cryptocurrency project, you probably have some questions about how to market it. Below, find our top advice on IEO marketing.
An IEO is not a sure thing
The high-profile success of several recent IEOs has lead to a certain amount of hype surrounding this new method of crowdsale. But this is not 2017, and investors aren’t going to throw their money at something just because they hear the word “blockchain.” You will need to put effort into marketing your IEO, and you may even need to run multiple IEOs on different exchanges in order to meet your hardcap.
Set yourself up for success
If you want your IEO to be a success, you need to come to the market prepared. You should have a polished whitepaper that explains the usecase for your project and why it needs to be on the blockchain.
You should have, at the very least, an MVP, but a product in beta or ready to launch is even better. Not only will this help you attract investors, but it will also help the exchange determine whether they want to host your IEO. They’re looking for good teams which have already built something, in order to increase their chances of launching a successful IEO.
You’ll need to have already recruited most or all of your team, and ensured that they are listed on your site and have your project listed on their LinkedIn (if they use LinkedIn).
And of course, your choice of exchange matters. One of the benefits of an IEO is that it gives you a ready-built audience of exchange users. You’ll want to partner with an exchange that has a large, active user base of altcoin traders.
Look at how the exchange has administered previous or ongoing IEOs. Do you like what they’re doing? If you’re to be one of the first IEOs they launch, what are they offering you? Do you have confidence in their ability to oversee IEOs, or does it seem like they’re just trying to jump on the bandwagon?
This is not a decision to be taken lightly. An exchange is an important partner in your IEO, and a poor choice of exchange could hurt you as much or more as a poor choice in CEO or lead dev. Choose an exchange that you feel confident in and excited about working with.
Don’t count on the exchange to market your IEO
One of the benefits of an IEO is that the exchange handles some aspects of the token sale, such as KYC/AML requirements and payment processing. They also offer some marketing, but not enough to guarantee the success of your project. Remember: you are not their top priority. Chances are they’ve got other IEOs running simultaneously, as well as other aspects of their exchange to market.
No one knows your project like you do, and thus, you should have a hand in marketing your IEO. Whether that involves having your own internal marketing team do the work, or working closely with an expert crypto marketing company, any efforts that you make can only increase the chances of success for your IEO.
You will also need to budget for marketing, and it may cost you $50-100k per IEO to work with a professional marketing team. Most companies will be expected to be paid up front, or in regularly agreed upon monthly payments. A promise of future profits is no longer enough to secure expert marketing help.
Much of the advice that applies to ICOs and STOs works for IEOs, too
We don’t need to reinvent the wheel here! Much of what held true for marketing ICOs and STOs will also hold true for IEOs.
- You need to be clear on whether your token is a utility or a security, and market accordingly.
- You will have to contend with advertising bans on Facebook and other major networks.
- You will need to engage with the crypto community, which means you will have to make sure your marketing team is knowledgeable about cryptocurrency and the blockchain.
IEO marketing happens on a shorter timeframe
Most IEOs only run for 1-2 months, meaning you have a much shorter period of intensive marketing, as compared to the 4-6 months taken up by the various stages of an ICO. This crunch means you need to be prepared and hit the pavement running. You have a short window to reach investors, give them all of the necessary information, and convince them to participate in your crowdsale.
Take advantage of that hype machine
Everyone is talking about IEOs right now. If you’re ready to launch your IEO, don’t be afraid to ride the hype train. Reach out to crypto and financial news organizations with your insights on what it’s like to run an IEO. Look for interview opportunities. The market is already getting flooded, so make sure your voice is being heard and that you’re not drowned out by the vast crowd. Your marketing plan should include an aggressive PR plan full of press releases, interviews, speaking engagements, and any other chance to get your face, name, and project in front of potential investors.
Don’t neglect the post-IEO phase!
Just as with ICOs and STOs, you must continue your marketing after the crowdsale ends! And if you are running multiple, back-to-back IEOs on different exchanges, you must ensure that you are diversifying your marketing. Investors who have already backed you on Binance don’t want to be flooded with requests to back you on Latoken. You’ll need to be providing regular updates on development, partnerships, and other milestones beyond the money you’re raising.
Success comes to those who work
If you want your IEO to make it, you’ll have to work hard. Be prepared, have a killer marketing strategy, and be willing to do what it takes to stand out. We’ll probably never see a return to the glory days of 2017’s ICO market, but there are opportunities out there for those who have a strong vision, a quality project, and a good marketing team. We hope that these tips will put you on the road to IEO success!
If you would like to check out your competition, visit our ongoing and upcoming IEO list.