Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) may be considered as the most important of all. ICO helps business/idea owners to pre-sell access to their services or products and in a way to fund the development of those services or products.
To help founders/ startups define an effective launch process and provide perspective on everything that they will need on their ICO journey, we have jotted down few points which will serve as a comprehensive guide to prepare for a successful ICO launch.
Similar to any typical start-up, it begins with an idea and you have to ensure that it is persuasive. Your idea must sound realistic to investors. This is the first and most basic point to kick-start.
Stakeholders must know the people who are essentially developing the product. List out the name of all the team members along with their LinkedIn profiles. Give information about them as much as you can. Showcase their past work and highlight their proven track record of success. It adds up to the credibility of your product. It is a huge factor to convince them. After all, they invest in people, not products.
It has to be well rounded and properly interpreted by people who you want to fund your start-up. From idea to implementation, it should be inclusive of every technical, financial and marketing detail.
The technology, you are building a product on
Complete product features and functionalities
The amount of capital you want to raise
The salary of your team members
The calculated estimation of ROI to investors
The specific currency you accept (Bitcoin, Ethereum or any other)
The Plan for pre-sale if you want
Setting up the goals with the timeline to accomplish
Planning the most crucial part of the ICO process. Shareholders are still a bit skeptical about funding ventures in the crypto world due to some uncertainties. Be as transparent as you can with them. The better you clear their doubts, the more they believe in you.
When you are dealing with other’s money, it shall never be done without covering all the legal aspects. Consult the reputed law firms which are experienced in cryptocurrency start-ups and ICO process. Cooley, Perkins Coie, and K&L Gates are some of the most reputed law firms in the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency space. Do remember that ICO compliance is varied from country to country.
When you ask for the money, you have to justify it. You should present a well-defined plan to earn investors' confidence. Share your vision with them with milestones you want to achieve a year down the line. You can also try to demonstrate multiple product versions to choose from. It makes your proposal sound good to them and allows them to consider your offer.
Create a buzz about what you want to do. There is no point in creating tokens if your investors don’t know about it. Make sure what you do on the promotional front reaches to whom you do it for. You are primarily targeting capitalists to fund your projects. However, it is easy to get lost in the digital landscape. You have to keep an eye on the ball ensuring your marketing platforms are relevant all the time.
There are multiple ways of doing it. Let’s have a look at them.
Participate in forus. Bitcointalk is a well-known forum where the genuine ICO prospects discuss projects. Apart from it, there are various online forums where you can find investors.
Refer to the ICO listing sites to keep you updated with best ICOs, token sales, and insightful business stats. Some of the sites are:
Join Quora and participate there on Cryptocurrency, Blockchain and ICOs topics. There are many discussions on these topics. Do it on a daily basis and provide useful information that adds value to the readers.
Social media marketing – Join relevant groups on Facebook and LinkedIn. Try Twitter as well. Post there frequently with hashtags. Connect with investors and reach out to them.
PR coverage on high-quality sites. Media presence is essential as ICO is a cynical concept and people like to more about it. Create a story that clears their doubts and matches up to their level of expectation. It gives you a competitive edge over others.
Influencer marketing – This is tricky but works best if you are able to do it successfully. Find people who matter in the crypto business and associate your product with them tactfully. The primary purpose of IM is to win the trust of customers. This is not easy; reaching out to such individuals is a daunting task. But when they talk about your product, it stands out in the eyes of people and gives a great authenticity.
Paid promotions – Target your audience demographically to enhance your content marketing efforts. Run ads on various digital (Google AdWords and Remarketing) and social media platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc.).
· Go to events, attend seminars and conferences of Blockchain application development company. Grow your network among the Crypto and ICO community.
Not just one, but you need to keep various prototype options on hand to show it to investors. It has to be done in the initial stage. We prefer to do it before the ICO process. It helps you validate the idea before you start raising funds.
Once the token is created, place it on different exchanges where people can sell and buy. We recommend to list them out on the sites on Best Bitcoin Exchange. The other two exchanges, we suggest are CoinMarketCap and CoinList.
CoinList has a strict regulatory compliance to follow. Getting listed there improves chances of success for your ICO.
Exchange listing compliance is different on almost every site. Typically, it requires the following information:
Coin trading symbol
Coin description along with project
Source code authorized by a third party
Compliance fees (If applicable)
There should be one key document which comprises of all the above information. It includes every single element such as
1. How your product works – describing every functionality thoroughly
2. All the details about your team members
3. How you will use tokens
4. Token allocation
It is technical in nature; however, it includes other non-technical aspects as well. Writing a white paper is a critical task as it incorporates every single piece of detail in one document. We strongly suggest you outsource it to professional content writers. As a start-up owner, you must pay extra attention to the quality of a whitepaper. Do verify it from the reliable sources. Needless to say, it is one of the most crucial factors throughout the ICO process.
Source: ICO Checklist