To understand what DeFi and crypto marketing have to do with each other, we need to break down these terms and find common ground.
DeFi, or Decentralized Finance, is a parallel financial system to a traditional one. DeFi is a technology that allows anyone, anytime, anywhere to be in control of their data and assets without centralized intermediaries like banks (in the case of TradFi) or centralized crypto exchanges (like Coinbase, Binance, etc.).
DeFi users use the blockchain to own, store, trade and invest cryptocurrencies peer-to-peer.
Therefore, one of the most important components of DeFi is trust between users, which is ensured by transparent transactions on chain.
So, crypto marketing is a way to promote your DeFi project and better understand your community.
We won’t go deeper into other crypto marketing special features, as we did earlier in Compatibility test: how to find crypto marketing agency.
DeFi marketing, a niche of crypto marketing, is something even more special.
Why DeFi marketing stands out?
DeFi marketing falls under the larger umbrella of crypto marketing. As something nichier, it requires a special approach:
- Paradigm of decentralization: unlike many crypto projects, which are backed by a centralized organization, DeFi projects are fundamentally decentralized and often managed by a community of token holders. This unique dynamic changes the way projects should be marketed.
- Innovation adoption cycle: while blockchain-savvy early adopters may already be using DeFi, getting the rest of us on board, even crypto users, is a challenge. Thus, DeFi marketing must also appeal to those who are less familiar with blockchain technology or for whom the DeFi concept is even new.
- Financial literacy: DeFi solutions aim to replace or enhance traditional financial services. To be successful here, marketing agencies must be knowledgeable in both blockchain and finance. This requires a deep understanding of financial markets, services and instruments, as well as crypto.
And hence, it’s important to choose a marketing agency that not only understands crypto but also DeFi, and has a track record of success to match.
Disclaimer. All the above challenges do not mean that the public is not ready for DeFi, because it is technically complex. It just means that the founders and marketers need to understand the technology and be able to educate and inform the public about DeFi.
If you need more explanations about what DeFi is, you can read A DeFinitive Guide to DeFi – Everything You Need to Know About Decentralized Finance
Before you jump into the best DeFi marketing agencies, let me introduce you to the most common DeFi applications.
Most common DeFi use cases
If your project falls into these categories, congrats – you’ve come to the right place. Note: You can find more DeFi use cases in our DeFi Academy. The following list contains only the most common ones.
- Lending & Borrowing: Users lend their cryptocurrency assets for interest or borrow assets against their crypto collateral. For example, you can deposit Bitcoin and earn interest or use Bitcoin as collateral to borrow Ethereum
- Stablecoins: Stablecoins are digital tokens that are pegged to fiat (like the U.S. dollar) to avoid the volatility of cryptocurrencies. With blockchain transparency and security, you can buy and use them like regular money.
Dive deeper into stablecoins: USDT vs USDC: Which stablecoin to use
- Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs): These are platforms where you can trade (buy or sell) cryptocurrencies directly with other users, without the need for an intermediary like a traditional exchange.
Read our guide on DEXs: What are DEXs? Decentralized Exchanges Explained
If you’re building or planning to build something like this, look no further. You are about to meet the best DeFi marketing agencies that will help you understand, attract and satisfy the needs of your users.
Best DeFi marketing agencies
Serotonin is a web3 native marketing agency specializing in businesses that are both native and new to the field. Founded in 2020 by Amanda Cassatt (ConsenSys background), Serotonin leverages its expertise in crypto, DeFi, DAOs, and NFTs to enable companies to shape the future of the web. Serotonin’s list of clients is high-profile: Polygon, Cosmos, Filecoin, and BitDAO, to name a few.
Brand & Positioning
PR & Communications
Visual DesignGrowth & Analytics
While I was working on this article, I came across a great interview by Amanda Cassatt with CoinDesk. Here’s the quote that I think explains well why you should take a closer look at Serotonin:
We cheerfully welcome new marketers into the space, because unlike Web2, with its finite pool of business to be competed for by rival agencies and practitioners, Web3 is growing at a breakneck pace, and thanks to Web3 economics, the rising tide of growth truly lifts all boats, stimulating network effects to drive more investment, developers and users. It behoves us to share our best practices with others in the hope they continue to grow our still-fledgling industry and also to continue to learn from those newcomers.
Myosin is a web3 marketing agency that seems to pull all the juices from the field. On the surface they are a team of professionals, but on the inside they are DAO. Myosin follows the DeFi paradigm itself. Given their carefully selected DAO pool of professionals, this could be your top choice. Some of the well-known web3 bands include Ledger, FWB and Mona.
On-chain reputation score
GPT-4 community engagement bots
Crypto exchange listing
Tip: If you are a web3 specialist and not looking for a marketing agency, Myosin can welcome you. Apply only if you are a self-starter who takes the initiative and wants to join a global DAO that accelerates the adoption of web3 for the masses.
3. Scrib 3
Scrib3 is a web3 marketing agency focused on blockchain and DeFi projects. They strive to be the leading DeFi agency in the field by leveraging their experience as engineers and program managers. They have worked with Mantle, Gain Networks, and The DeFi Edge, among others.
Content writing and marketing
As Ross Booth, co-founder of Scrib3, writes in his post about building an agency, “How I built a $1M+ web3 service business in 5 months with $0 in funding”:
There’re many web3 marketing agencies. Very few, if any, understand DeFi and blockchain infrastructure in a way that makes them effective content marketers in these categories.
4. Market Across
MarketAcross is an established blockchain PR & marketing company for startups and cryptocurrencies. From content creation to content placement and amplification, they can guarantee results by leveraging blockchain storytelling. The company has been around since 2014. They got many on board, from Solana to Tezos to Polkadot.
MarketAcross’ testimonials speak for themselves.
MultiversX Daniel Serb, Head of Business Development:
MarketAcross has done an incredible job accompanying our Mainnet launch news and the announcements that followed, and have provided key inputs for our positioning and messaging strategy…
5. Spark and Mint
Spark and Mint develops products and experiences with protocols, DAOs, and enterprises to bring the first billion people to web3. Their core values are co-creation, meritocracy, progress and freedom. They have already partnered with Tracer, Near and Primelab.
Tip: Check out the Spark blog. Spark + Mint has a great blog with the latest news, stories and insights around DAOs, dApps, Defi and Blockchain.
Now for the die-hards.
Let’s take a step back and say that no marketing efforts will advance your project unless you’re really into the DeFi paradigm.
That is, if you don’t care about your community more than anything else.
Why is community more important than marketing?
I’m not saying they can’t work together. We even composed a list of the best DeFi marketing agencies.
Community engagement isn’t just a good-to-have, it’s a must-have for DeFi. Your users are far more than just a collection of people, they’re the lifeblood of your project.
It’s exactly a community that ensures growth, which is more than just an increase in numbers.
Their commitment and loyalty lead to real and sustainable growth.
They’re also often a project’s governing body, democratizing decision-making and fostering a sense of ownership that marketers struggle to deliver.
And when the market fluctuates, it’s the community that serves as an anchor and provides unwavering support.
Decentralized Finance (DeFi) marketing is unique and requires specialized knowledge and strategies. Given the complexity and innovation of DeFi projects, marketing agencies must have a deep understanding of blockchain, finance, and the nuances of the decentralized economy.
Some of the best agencies equipped for the task include Serotonin, Myosin, Scrib3, MarketAcross, and Spark + Mint. These agencies offer a wide range of services and can point to successful DeFi marketing campaigns.
The success of a DeFi project does not rest solely on a well-thought-out marketing strategy.
Community engagement plays a critical role in the growth and success of your project.
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