ICO is the initial coin offering for a mass audience. This is somewhat similar to the IPO (initial public offering) but is built in a completely different way. Almost everyone can start and launch ICO – this does not require a lot of investment. But, nevertheless, the tasks and functions before the ICO are quite laborious because you must have a team that will help to make it right. What do I mean? Marketing and PR of ICO, dissemination of information to a mass audience, work with social media and channels. The most important components.
You should clearly understand which audience you are targeting. Now the greatest coverage can be obtained only in the English-speaking and Chinese segments. Despite the fact that China does not allow ICO to be made for its registered companies, no one prohibits the registration of a company in the US, or Singapore, as many did.
ICO is one of the most popular trends in 2018. The website Elementus prepared an entertaining chart of ICO growth for a two-year period. During this period, crowdsale collected more than $6.3 billion.
Who is ICO for?
There is an opinion that ICO suits any company. This is true but with some peculiarities – not all of them fit. At this point, I’ll help you make out whether the ICO is right for you and what you need to take into account.
1. Own cryptocurrency. A classic example of an ideal company for ICO. You create your own cryptocurrency, do marketing, and work with the press and media. You can trade your crypto coins on platforms. In principle, a fairly understandable option. Having a strong strategy and guided by the right tactics – it’s enough to really come to the decent result. Now the market presents over 100 different crypto-currencies, some are closed – others are launched. Only the strongest and cleverest survive. If you are confident in your team and there is a sufficient threshold of investment – uniquely do.
Such an example happened with Ethereum. And now this is the second by the capitalization of the cryptocurrency.
2. Internal currency. It can be a game in which you can open additional levels, buy skins or clothes for characters. Applicable also to social networks, forums and so on. Do you remember how it was with the “voices” of Vkontakte? You can repeat this very same strategy.
3. SaaS platform. In fact, users must deposit their money to your internal account and use your services. Much in common with the previous paragraph. By combining a start of ICO and launching the platform, you can double your strength and literally make a very strong leap in your market.
These are the most typical and obvious types of companies that ICO will fit. However, if your company does not fit any of these criteria – write to us, and we will help you find an alternative to introduce and create your own cryptocurrency.
The primary placement of coins is perhaps the only most affordable way to raise money for your project and provide it to a wide audience. A huge leap in the development of your company.
Choose ICO tokens or create your own cryptocurrency
There are several different options for the initial coin offering. Working with Ethereum or Waves or the creation of own cryptocurrency. The first and second versions do not differ in principle; however, when choosing an option, you can trade these currencies themselves through the cryptocurrencies exchange platforms. To date, the most suitable type is ERC20.
You can create cryptocurrency yourself, but I would recommend contacting professional companies. Coin offer stands on the border of technology and finance and is part of the fintech industry. For example, the Filecoin project collected $257 million. The company is developing smart solutions for storing data. As a reward, users receive filecoins.
If you are planning to raise several hundred thousand dollars or more, be prepared to spend a lot of time, resources or money on gathering an ideal team. In one place you can hardly keep all best people. Be prepared to establish the perfect communication between all members using:
1. Slack for communication;
2. Trello for assigning tasks;
3. Google Drive for sharing files;
4. Zoom for conferences;
5. Google hangouts.
The most important is Whitepaper. Prepare for it in full, many users will not read it, however, this does not mean that it is necessary to treat it negligently. If you look at the influential crypto enthusiasts (this often happens on the forums) and notice some oversights, consider everything gone. Hire experts in this industry, let them do a proofread. Otherwise, you run the risk of writing bad things about you. This industry does not like black PR.
Add graphics, pictures, and images. The whitepaper is a kind of presentation of the project, its business plan, and project’s main component.
Remember that the market and the ICO audience is the whole world? First of all, consider the possibility of multilingualism on your website. Choose the framework and programming languages very seriously, it should be high-performance and custom for development. Forget about WordPress or similar CMS. Make a complete translation into English, Chinese, Japanese, French, and Russian. You can rely on the company’s internal resources, or use bounty-campaigns.
Regarding Whitepaper, here is not all so unambiguous. Some companies do not recommend translating it. Personally, from my experience, it looks much more professional, if it is translated. However, you must be sure of the translation by 100%. Only enthusiasts will read your Whitepaper.
And lastly, watch the company’s reputation and mention it in social media. Write in support, block users who are trying to scum your audience.
Marketing for ICO campaigns
No ICO goes without marketing. After all, after the publication of coins or cryptocurrency, it is important that Internet users know about it and are interested. We at Merehead recommend a few points, but the most important is the creativity and coverage. Your campaign (by the way, it is quite realistic to compare with the advertising campaign) should be recognizable.
The minimum requiring that is needed:
1. Professional forums such as https://bitcointalk.org. This is probably the largest forum on which all crypto enthusiasts sit, from beginners to pros. There are many threads on the forum, and there are separate threads for every language of the world. If you do not know English thoroughly, it does not matter. Thai, Russian, Italian and others are available to every user. After creating your own topic, politely communicate with the audience on a professional level, answer quickly and do not try to evade or dodge the questions. Imagine that you are in a debate with your opponent or rather an ally.
2. Website development. Should be a landing page, with a company’s blog where you regularly publish news and events regarding your company. Must be a page with the team and a brief overview of each member (especially technical experts and executives). Do not forget to also put links to social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. For the Russian segment, it is worth adding VK. Remember that everything is built on the trust and confidence in your business and offer. To work with the blog you can set up and configure a connection with Medium.
3. Subscriptions and email campaigns are a must. Just imagine that your interested users and investors are following different companies, and they can simply forget about you. Remind them of ICO and Pre-ICO for a few days, a week, 2 weeks and a month before the launch.
Be sure to arrange sales for your investors at the Pre-ICO stage. This has a positive impact on investors and company at all. Do not delay marketing too long, exactly, like the ICO campaign – 1 month is much enough to sell coins.
How much does ICO cost?
Merehead provides few different options and packages for ICO. On average, the price for ICO is $18,300. Including KYC, distribution, creation; a platform for users and more. Be aware, cooperating with companies from Western Europe or the US as they take 2x-4x times more.
Does ICO make sense for business? The answer is short – yes. Probably, it is the easiest and fastest way for fundraising and launching your digital project. Let me know if you need some help.