I'm going to make a bold statement:
Zero hivers here are first-rate at branding, marketing, PR, copywriting, or design.
Some of them are decent, but none are noticeably above-average in these areas. Especially not all 5 at once. Not a single one of Hive's 200,000+ 'active users' has demonstrated a high degree of skill, experience, or wisdom in these.
I'd love to be proven wrong. I'd love someone to call me out and show me god-tier talent in these areas. Because if they do so, we'll have at least one more Hiver who understands persuasive communication and audience-building.
I've met some hiver's who are great coders. I've met some who are great economists. I've met some who are great investors. Great writers. But so far, I'm the only hiver I know who's above-average at the skills I mentioned above.
And the funny thing is, I hate marketing.
I'm a bit like Leonardo Da Vinci. A renaissance man. I'm good at many things. But that doesn't mean I love to do them often.
I just... like being good at things. So I make a point of being so.
For instance, I can cook and do dishes well, but I'd rather let @cynshineonline or restaurants do those for me, so I rarely do them.
And because I don't list my credentials every two seconds, or parade my testimonials around, or self-promote my talent... people often underestimate my abilities, or write me off, or cling to their egos, refusing to admit I know more.
For example, when I first joined Hive, I created some buzz about Hive's (subpar) marketing with my articles "Is Hive Selling Sizzle... And Stakes?" and "Hive Is Invisible, Just Like Me." In one, I suggested brand-messaging possibilities that might help Hive. I wasn't pushing for any specific marketing direction. I was simply offering options. And it was clear from that post that I knew more about branding than anyone who commented. Period. And you know how people responded?
Not super positively. One of my suggested taglines --'Social That Pays,'-- triggered some of the more vocal commenters.
Instead of commenters discussing the superior marketing I was clearly outlining, they hyper-focused on one suggestion ('Social That Pays') and...
...did their best to convince me it was bad idea.
And it's ironic because the fact that that message got people talking is a testament to it's value. The fact that they ignored most of my post and literally couldn't help themselves from 'discussing' the message is something a true copywriter or marketer would leverage. The fact that what I wrote was so polarizing to people is a strong indication that it's a 'buzzworthy' approach. When you're aiming to make a splash in the market, polarization is something to aim for, not something to avoid.
You can't create true fans without also creating true haters.
You can't have light without dark. And if Hive truly intends to shine, they need a message that resonates with a clear target audience, ideally consumers. Which means a bold 'controversial' message will generate the most word-of-mouth & mind-share, which if you know anything about branding, is literally the most valuable thing a project can get.
No one is going to pay attention for messaging like this: "The Blockchain & Cryptocurrency Developed For Web 3.0" -- You couldn't pay me to join a platform that presents itself like that. Ugh.
It's like a foreign language. Long, wordy, meaningless, and valueless to almost everyone. But 'Social That Pays?' Or 'Social That Rewards?' Or 'Social That Earns?' Dang... that is fire. That gets people talking. That's newsworthy.
That is a scoop that journalists will write about for free.
And it's literally what Hive is. To a casual user, Hive is pretty much identical to other social platforms, with the most glaring difference being that they earn crypto while using it.
For consumers the selling point of Hive is earning for consuming.
And focusing on this point is basically all you need to get people to join. That is the main value-proposition for consumers.
Now, if you're targeting the 10 million-strong 'banned communities' who recently got ejected from Facebook, you'd want a much different message. You'd want to focus on being 'censorship-resistant' for them. But the average person doesn't wake up and shake their fist at the sky thinking 'I'm sick of Facebook's censorship!', they just wake up, click 'like' a bunch of times, go to work, come home, sleep, repeat. They consume. They curate. Consumers see no reason to switch from Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.
Censorship & decentralization does. not. matter. to. most. consumers.
But a chance to earn money? To be rewarded? To gain crypto just for clicking 'upvote'? That's juicy AF.
We live in an attention economy, flooded with billions of messages.
And if people are passionately discussing your product or service, they're amplifying your visibility, and you're literally growing in value. If people aren't talking about you, they're burying you in the other messages out there, and you're invisible.
Do we want Hive to be invisible?
Because right now, it might as well be.
Many Hivers understand that the value of Hive's token will increase, when more people are buzzing about Hive, discovering it, joining it. And I'd like to highlight @nonameslefttouse here because he, more than anyone, seems to 'get this.' (But he also resisted the tagline 'Social That Pays'). He's been incredibly vocal that Hive has enough content-creators, devs, and investors hanging around. He knows that consumers are the word-of-mouth amplifiers who decide whether a project lives or dies. And he knows that the only message consumers need is this: "Get paid (in crypto) for doing what you already do on other social platforms."
So, to that end, I have created a mock landing page for
Hive.io (@starkerz has kindly pointed out that I actually meant HIVE.BLOG here,) with hugely elevated branding, messaging, copy, PR, and design.
You'd have to pay a designer thousands of dollars, and a copywriter many thousands more, (and possibly a brand consultant) to come up with what I'm offering here for free. Ready?
Here is my next-level landing page mockup:
Click To Enlarge
But if this goes anything like my last post on Hive's marketing, the comment section will just be a bunch of small minds who are scared of 'public reaction' chirping up about how this marketing approach is a bad idea. Then they'll take Hive's marketing right back to:
'blah blah blah censorship, blah blah blah blockchain, blah blah blah.'
Which again, no consumer gives a single f**k about.
Effective brand messaging is a balancing act.
It's like playing with fire: a good chef masters it to create an amazing result, a bad chef just burns the kitchen down. This is why bad chefs just stick to the microwave, and balk if you suggest they grab a blowtorch and whip up a flambé.
For the average marketer, it's tempting to play safe with brand messaging. Average marketers are scared of controversy, scared of 'legalities', and scared of 'misunderstandings'...
...but talented marketers use these tools masterfully to create buzz and visibility.
Is my landing page mockup here perfect? Of course not, I made it in 5 hours. It may need a nav-menu. Or a footer chock full of useful links. Maybe you have to pitch the press for a week or two to secure credibility badges. There's plenty of details to nitpick. Zzzzzz. Whatever. It'd be missing the point. The point is this has got most of the persuasion-levers needed to actually persuade people to try Hive.
Click To Enlarge
And I'm telling you straight up... The marketing approach I've created here will get vastly better results for Hive-adoption by consumers than anything else I've seen from anyone on Hive. It'll also get a few more haters too. But that's the price of all successful offerings in the market.
All successful projects gain many fans and a small chunk of haters.
If you try to avoid taking a stand, polarizing people, and creating at least some controversy... you're literally avoiding buzz. Avoiding success. And your project will die in obscurity due to lack of visibility.
I'm not saying you have to stand on the rooftops and praise the holocaust or something, but you can't rest in obscure fluff and timid approaches. People are on auto-pilot in their lives. They need to be woken up to new offerings in the market, like Hive.
And your message is the alarm clock.
And your volume is way too low. That's why your marketing fails. The volume of nearly all early-stage brands is way too low. Quiet copy. Quiet messages. Full of fear of 'repercussions' or 'saying the wrong thing.' Fear, lack of knowledge, low levels of marketing talent keeps a project small.
A real marketer errs on the side of 'too loud', then turns it down if necessary.
A real marketer plays big with their messaging, without turning into hyperbolic clickbait. Every product you love, recommend, and talk about has created a buzz with their messaging and stepped fearlessly into the market, poking their head above the noise rather than blending in with it. Netflix, Uber, even your favorite book or video game has pissed people off and refused to play safe with their message.
Hive can either join them or die slowly over several years.
And as an example, this post you're reading is controversial & polarizing to some degree already. I can think of a few people who may take this the wrong way, even though it's a) true, b) helpful, and c) valuable. Still, people's egos may get riled up, downvotes may fly. But if I'm going to practice what I preach, I have to be okay with that. Because it's a sign that at least my message made people feel something, got a reaction, and generated some buzz.
Ultimately all that matters is that I took a stand, offered insane value freely on this platform, with a focus on helping all of Hive, and if any haters wanna hate, let 'em hate.
OK, that wraps it up. Thanks for reading, I appreciate you.
I'll tag some hivers I'm pretty sure will get value out of this: @abh12345 , @meesterboom, @grampo , @joshman , @dandays , @intothewild , @focus.folks , @guiltyparties , @marc5 , @dalz , @acidyo (may not like this cuz it increases likelihood of Hive 'abusers', but tagging anyway :D), @jackyvergara , @crosheille , @katerinaramm , @phage93 , @mattclarke , @thoughts-in-time , @juanvegetarian , @starstrings01 , @brutalisti , @regenerette , @nevies , @theycallmedan , @starkerz , @eddiespino , @mynima , @finguru , @paulo.sar , @barge , @ausbitbank , @streetwize , @kobusu , @wesphilbin , @brittandjosie , @glecerioberto , @dwinblood , @spknetwork.chat , @mimismartypants , @vikisecrets , @traciyork , @discovery-it , @ybanezkim26 , @deanliu , @asgarth , @gtg , @aliento , and @louis88 . These are also people I believe will get the point and contribute constructively to the discussion.
P.S. Please share this with anyone who is passionate about Hive. They don't have to be marketers. Everyone who loves Hive can benefit from superior messaging when they talk to others. Every hiver has the power to make a splash when they converse & share, but not if they're timid and play it too safe.
Hive could shine bright everywhere
And explode with every share
Every word could cause a thrill
If marketer's were not so scared
Take my advice, never frown
Just accept I know the tao
Only thing that's on my mind
Hive's gonna run this town tonight
Hive's gonna run this town tonight
Hive gonna run this town