For years, one of the toughest problems on this blockchain has been onboarding. No matter how far back in time you go, it's been hard to sign up to Hive and therefore, hard to sign up to LeoFinance.
When this project was started, onboarding was always a core focus. You can go back to any of the number of interviews that I (@khaleelkazi) did on various podcasts on this chain.
LeoFinance is a growth-first project. We care about growing our KPIs more than anything else. One of the most important performance metrics for LeoFinance is how many new users we can bring on board. This doesn't mean new users from Hive. It means new users from outside of Hive.
To solve this issue, we've had to build countless layers of infrastructure. You can look at this problem as requiring a great number of dominos to fall in place:
- We need a community for users to come to
- A great UI for them to get started on
- A vibrant token with great economics and value-based incentives
- Proper marketing pillars
- etc. etc.
Today, we put a key piece into place: Twitter Lite accounts and 2 direct Hive signup options.
In this post, you'll see an overview of what we've built and why. The various signup methods will be explained from a higher level. In other posts (from this account and videos from @khaleelkazi), you'll find more ground-level tutorials on how to use each of these methods and more detailed explanations of the backend.
One marketing strategy that we've deployed recently is the building of Twitter threads to explain various parts of the LeoFinance ecosystem. With so many different aspects of our project, we need threads to build awareness and educate new/existing users on fundamental concepts.
An example of a thread we built is this one about WLEO. A lot of work has been going on behind the scenes to build similar threads about fundamental LeoFinance concepts. The next one to drop will demonstrate how to Get Started using our new sign up options.
4 Signup Options:
There are now 4 different ways to signup for an account on LeoFinance:
- Create a Hive account (with Twitter verification)
- Create a Hive account (with Phone # verification)
- Sign up with Metamask
- Sign up with Twitter
Regardless of which option you choose, a Hive account is created. The difference between "Create a Hive account" and the other 2 sign up options is simply based on how the keys are stored and how the user can sign in.
This means that a user can do every single function that another user can do. It doesn't matter how you sign up. When the user selects "Create a Hive account" they are prompted to download their keys and LeoInfra does not store any sort of backup for them.
When a user selects sign up with Metamask or Twitter, LeoInfra stores and encrypts their Hive keys on their behalf. We've defined these accounts as "Lite" accounts even though they have every single functionality a "full" account has. Again, the only difference is that the user doesn't have to download/store their Hive private keys unless they choose to download them (which they can do from the wallet UI on LeoFinance.io).
Since this is a common question, I've decided to include a more in-depth section here about Lite accounts and how we define them:
Defining Lite Account vs. Full Account
Many on Hive have long talked about this idea of "Lite" accounts. Accounts that could essentially perform similar functions to full Hive accounts without causing the user a burden of signup which includes keys and the whole Hive signup process that requires a lot of extra work.
With our LeoInfra integrations, we took a slightly different approach to "Lite" accounts. These accounts are real Hive accounts. For example, when someone signs up with Twitter, they are actually creating a Hive account.
The key difference is that they don't have to download their keys. Instead, we leverage an integration (either with Twitter or Metamask) to confirm their ownership of the Hive account which we custody for them.
It may sound complex - because it is - but the user experience on the frontend is as simple as it could possibly be.
Users can sign up using nothing other than a connection with a previous app/wallet (i.e. Twitter or Metamask) and start using LeoFinance/Hive without even downloading their keys and learning about how all of that stuff works.
Over time, we will prompt these users to take full control of their account by downloading/changing their keys. For new users, it's a daunting task and that's why it is so important to scratch this out of the onboarding experience for the vast majority of people.
"Full" accounts under the LeoInfra definition are simply accounts where the user has decided to take control of the keys from the very start. The user chooses to do this by selecting "Sign up for a Hive account" instead of "Sign up using Twitter" (or Metamask).
The important note here is that Lite & Full accounts really have no difference other than the explicit ownership. They both carry the same level of functionalities from the User perspective: vote, comment, post, send transfers, power up, etc.
The new LeoInfra Integrations:
Now that we've got some of the backend discussions out of the way. Here's how the integrations look from the User's perspective.
3 new options for signing up:
- Sign Up With Twitter (Lite Account)
- Sign Up Using Phone # Verification (Full Account)
- Sign Up Using Twitter Verification (Full Account)
Sign Up With Twitter (Lite Account)
When a user selects "Sign up with Twitter" they are prompted to choose a username (for their Hive account) and then verify using Twitter.
After selecting their username, they are prompted with a Twitter dialog to approve the LeoFinance app:
Once approved, their account is created and they are automatically signed in.
Since this is a "Twitter Lite" account, the user isn't prompted to download any blockchain keys. Instead, we create a Hive account for them on the backend and link it to their Twitter account. This means that the user can sign out and then sign back in on any device using only their Twitter account for the sign in process. It looks like this:
The user can do any operation a Hive user can do on LeoFinance.io. They can comment, upvote, post, etc.
"Posting Key" operations do not require a verification from Twitter but when the user tries to do "Active Key" operations, LeoInfra re-prompts the Twitter verification operation. Note: if the user is signed in with Twitter, then they don't have to enter their login details. It automatically signs the confirmation.
Think of this as being similar to a Hive Keychain confirmation window that pops up each time you do a transfer. This confirmation window only prompts itself when you're doing active key operations and not when you're doing things like upvoting/commenting.
This is an interesting feature. You may recall that in LeoInfra V1, we introduced the "Metamask Binding Feature". This feature allows you to broadcast a custom JSON from your Hive account which links your Hive account to a particular ETH address.
Binding your Hive to your Metamask address allows you to unlock extra Ethereum-based features on LeoFinance.io. i.e. wrap/unwrap LEO/WLEO.
We've built LeoInfra to be cross-compatible with Twitter/Metamask binding. This means that you can actually sign up using Twitter and then subsequently bind a Metamask address to the same Twitter-enabled Hive account.
Effectively, this means that you now have a Hive account created for you that is linked to both your Twitter and your Metamask accounts. This means that you can do cross-blockchain interactions like using Wrapped LEO. It also means that you can sign in/broadcast transactions via Twitter or Metamask.
This probably sounds complicated, but from the user perspective it is incredibly valuable and efficient. A video will drop soon that will show this off in more detail but I want you to close your eyes and picture a LeoFinance where you can login with any number of integrations and seamlessly link your account to multiple blockchain wallets for instanenous interactions across blockchains.
In one minute, you could upvote/comment on a post. In another, you can send an ETH-based transaction or interact with an ETH-based swap. In yet another minute, you could be managing a Thorchain liquidity pool position.
How does that saying go? The possibilities are endless.
I've often said that LeoInfra will be one of our largest-scale projects and this is the reason why. Multiple blockchains. Multiple apps. Multiple web2/web3 wallets. All seamlessly connected while using Hive as the backend database to link them all together.
Sign Up Using Phone # (or Twitter) Verification (Full Account)
These next two integrations weren't actually planned in our original scope of work for LeoInfra V2. We ran into some issues with Hiveonboard and decided to go our own route to build direct-to-Hive sign ups on LeoFinance.io. This again brings a limitless world of possible integrations and it allows users who are familiar with blockchains/private keys to choose ownership over ease of use.
1). The user is prompted with the "Get Started" dialog:
2). After selecting "Create a Hive account" they are given details on what this means and how to proceed:
3). Selecting continue takes them to the signup screen. The user is prompted to choose a Hive username. Then they select the verification method (either Phone # or Twitter)
4). After the user downloads their keys, they hit register and are prompted with a Twitter verification popup:
5). Once verified, they are welcomed to LeoFinance. They can then go back and hit "Sign In" to choose either Hive Keychain or Hivesigner (if they don't have Hive Keychain, they are prompted to download the extension):
The sign up process for phone # verification is identical to Twitter. As the name suggests, it simply prompts an SMS text instead of a Twitter login.
Welcome to the Lion's Den
This is a fun channel we created in Discord where we drop links to new users so that the community can welcome them and follow for their future posts.
One of the most vital aspects in the onboarding process is actually what comes after a user has been onboarded into an account. Once their profile is created and they start creating posts/comments, we want to make sure that they're having a good experience with the site.
Earning rewards is awesome, but the community and engagement is what will keep these new users coming back. I love seeing how engaged our community is on all content - especially that of new users. It's not uncommon to see 50+ comments on a new signup's post. We need to keep these efforts up and have a good system for alerting all of us when new users sign up and create content.
A new bot in our Discord server has been setup to track new account creations. Whenever a new account is created via LeoInfra, we send out an alert in this special Discord channel. It looks like this:
As time goes on, we may also add more functionalities. At the end of the day, the important part of this is that we welcome new users with both our upvotes and our engagement so that we hook them into this ecosystem and get them as addicted as we are.
Where Do We Go From Here?
This has been one of the most important issues to solve for me for as long as LeoFinance has existed. Now that we've got 4 different sign up methods for 4 different groups of potential users, where do we go from here?
This post marks the release of two major parts of our roadmap:
- LeoInfra V2
- LeoFinance V2 P2 (full release notes will come in a separate post, so this one doesn't run 10,000+ words)
If you spend a lot of time in LeoFinance chats on Discord or elsewhere, then you'll know that we've been spending a lot of time on a few different marketing projects. We'll release yet another post outlining our marketing plans and also our first DAO proposal (which LeoFinance community members have been bugging me to release). This proposal will be aimed at marketing and actual account sign ups using LeoInfra will be used as our milestones - with today's announcement, you might see why I've been waiting to launch the proposal 😉
LeoFinance has a lot of different irons in the fire right now. Some of them you're already aware of (i.e. upcoming Cache layer for LeoFinance.io, the Microblogging release in mid-late December, CEX listing announcement in January). Others haven't been publicly discussed yet.
The number of releases we've had in 2020 is pretty mind-blowing, but all of these releases have really served to set the stage for 2021 where we focus on further improving the LeoFinance.io UI/UX, building new apps (one with the name LeoFi) and most importantly: onboarding the next generation of LeoFinance/Hive users.
It's a few days late, but we are releasing the December roadmap shortly. Toward the end of the year, we'll reveal the 2021 roadmap which is just 🤯
Thank you for being a part of this community and our journey. Now get out there and start onboarding people through LeoInfra. I know Mitch @scaredycatguide is out there shilling LeoFinance to investors and getting them onboarded through Metamask. Now he's got Twitter in his toolkit and so do you.
LeoFinance is a blockchain-based social media community for Crypto & Finance content creators. Our tokenized app allows users and creators to engage and share content on the blockchain while earning cryptocurrency rewards.
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