Social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook give individuals the power to disseminate information through a network. They create a participatory culture where each individual can get involved in their own way in a shared cause, whether that is decentralization through blockchain technology or a front against hedge funds.
Blockchain uses the power of a distributed network for security, and it was only natural for projects to use the same principles when communicating with their users. The spread of blockchain technology occurred through forums such as bitcointalk.org or 4chan. Projects initially targeted niche audiences with an understanding of the use cases of blockchain.
As Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit became more popular, they facilitated the spread of information faster to a broader audience, helping cryptocurrencies gain momentum. However, in 2018, Facebook, Google, and Twitter implemented a ban on cryptocurrency ads. Nevertheless, the use of Twitter was still valuable to the community.
Communication Patterns In Crypto
Twitter gives users the power to share ideas without barriers, creating a circular network economy where active participation drives the spread of information. Hashtag usage allows users to stumble upon new information while browsing the feed, thus increasing the chances of new project discovery. Reddit uses a similar participatory (or “cult-like”) culture, ideal for creating unstructured intergroup contact.
Twitter and Reddit promote discussions between members of the platforms, aiding them in having an open, authentic conversation without any filters. A 2019 study in America found that 23% of young adults aged 25-29, and 21% of 18-24-year-olds, use Reddit. Similarly, over 50% of the Twitter audience is composed of young people between 18-34. With cryptocurrencies targeting digital natives and becoming more interesting for millennials and Generation Z, new projects aim to reach them through their preferred means of communication.
Platforms such as Reddit, Telegram, Twitter, Medium, or Discord are vital for each cryptocurrency project’s success. Regardless of their age group, blockchain users and investors determine a project’s credibility based on its level of community involvement. More often than not, investors demand developers’ answers to evaluate the project’s promises and timeline.
As communities are essential for any blockchain project, they dictate the means of interaction that it uses. Thus, projects communicate and answer direct questions through Telegram, Twitter, or Reddit AMA threads, where the audience can have live interaction with the developers. That increases credibility as it adds a human dynamic to the project.
On the Flipside
- Despite Reddit being an official communication channel, few investors trust information found on Twitter.
- Twitter and Reddit have closed the accounts of influential people for breaking platform rules and promoting scams.
- Because of some investors’ lack of knowledge and the absence of an official communication platform, cryptocurrency investors are susceptible to fraud and scams.
Are We Going To See A Change?
The cryptocurrency market is maturing with new institutional investors and regulations set in place. Such developments beg the question of whether communication styles will change. The average age of retail investors is still decreasing, with some platforms allowing trading without any KYC (know your customer) standards. Information resources are easily attainable through Reddit, Twitter, or Facebook, where most of the retail market is active.
PR companies and project practices have embedded the idea of using the aforementioned platforms to generate awareness and keep community involvement to the maximum. Previous examples of how Dogecoin used Reddit to grow the token and become more than just a joke currency reinforce the idea of using such platforms to ensure a project’s growth.
Social media platforms have normalized effective participatory communication for the younger generations, and that is irreversible. As Bitcoin grew through the power of the network, so will other new blockchain projects; thus, existing communication practices will still hold value as they utilize the group’s capacity to spread information.
As both readers and listeners in the communication cycle can actively contribute through feedback and knowledge, blockchain projects can only benefit from the network economy, which allows them to better understand market demand. Sure, existing alternatives are available, such as Signal or Slack, but the community culture needs to be maintained regardless of the platform.