Starting an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) token sale might feel like a troublesome task to those who are just beginning in the crypto industry. But if you know just the right approach, you can save yourself a lot of money and time and make things quite smooth while starting and running an ICO.
With that purpose, we are today going to share a brief yet complete guide to starting the first ICO project.
But, first things first.
What is an ICO?
ICO, or Initial Coin Offering, is a new kind of fundraising method in which the issuing company sells a new cryptocurrency (token) in exchange for investors’ money, usually as a way to raise funds for a new project.
How to start your own ICO
Here’s a step-by-step guide to starting and running a successful ICO token sale.
Step 1: About the Project
Start by telling people about your project. You simply cannot expect anyone to invest in your ICO unless you tell them everything about the project and convince how investing in it will profit them.
For this, you must have a very good idea of the project concept and the problem it is trying to solve. Then, you need to find a USP (Unique Selling Point) that makes your ICO better or different from the existing ICOs. Then, start telling about it by writing on your ICO website, writing in the whitepaper and sharing on social media and other places.
The more people know about your project, the more likely they are to become a part of it.
For instance, DAVX coin, which is a digital payment currency, is all about providing an alternative to bitcoin by making digital payments convenient and secure. By spreading the message all over the internet, social media, forums, etc. they are making sure that the investors know about the coin before investing in the ICO.
Step 2: Project (ICO) Calendar or Roadmap
The project roadmap is also an important thing to include on your ICO website/whitepaper in order to give investors a clear idea of how the project will proceed, when and how you are planning to hold the ICO sale and what happens after that. So, make sure to craft a good and achievable roadmap for your project and convey the same to your targeted audiences.
Step 3: Technical Specifications (Whitepaper)
While most of the novice investors may not ask for the technical specifications of the project before buying your tokens, a professional/experienced investor always will.
Technical specifications include the technical details of the project, including the blockchain type, implementation mechanism, token details, smart contract, mining process (if there is the mining of coins), etc. Make sure to explain everything in detail in your ICO whitepaper.
Step 4. Smart Contract
Smart Contract is a blockchain application that is created mainly for the purpose to work as a digital contract for the users of a blockchain network. Smart contracts are written in computer code and can be customized to validate any kind of digital transactions such as payments, contracts, ownership transfer, etc.
Every ICO which is powered by blockchain technology must have a smart contract to digitally and fairly process the investors’ money. The smart contract must be available to investors on request.
Step 5. Explain How The Project Makes (or will make) Money
One of the major concerns of the investors of any new ICO is whether the project is even capable of giving a return on the investments. No investor will ever want to put their money in a project which does not have a proper revenue mechanism.
For instance, a digital currency will be used for payments as well as for trading on exchanges. So, the investors can earn profits by using or trading/holding the coin.
Similarly, the issuers of new ICOs must also have a clear and proper mechanism for revenue generation for the platform as well as for the project investors. Do explain the same in your project whitepaper.
Step 6. Lending Program
If there is a lending program associated with the project, make sure to specify it in detail in the whitepaper. A lending program is where the issuing company allows token-holders to lend/borrow money in exchange for cryptocurrencies.
Other than the lending program, you may run other user-exclusive programs such as crypto exchange, in-wallet transfer, etc.
Step 7. Affiliate Program
Also commonly known as Airdrop program, this involves paying a commission (usually in the form of tokens) to the people who bring investors to your ICO. An Airdrop program may also involve paying free tokens to those who help promote the ICO via several means such as social media, communities, etc.
If you are running an affiliate/airdrop program with your ICO, make sure to convey it properly with the potential audiences.
Step 8. Listing on Top ICO sites
In order to get your ICO more popular and increase its reach to more and more people, you must mandatorily list it to various ICO listing sites such as ICOBench, CoinHills, ICOHolder, FoundICO, ICOBazaar, etc.
The ICO listing process on these sites is quite simple. You’ll have to provide the details of your ICO along with an option for potential investors to connect. Then, you can sit back and wait for investors to start pouring (depending on how good your project actually is).
Step 9. News Section
Adding a news/blog section to your ICO website is another very promising way of creating engagement and converting traffic into sales. Keep your website’s news section up to date with the latest updates about the project, investment tips, ICO tips, etc. Add a comment section to your blog and always reply to user comments to further create engagement on your posts.
Step 10. Future of the Project
Last but not least, you should have a clear
vision for the future of your ICO project. Any investor who wants to invest in
your token/coin would first like to know about your future plans. You should be
able to convince them in a genuine way that the project will succeed in the
future and have great potential for the same.
The thing that I like the most about ICOs is that
anyone can start them. But that is also the thing that makes them dangerous, as
anyone (even a fraud person/company having no intent to develop anything
actually) can start an ICO. Investors are, therefore, becoming very careful
when investing in a new token or ICO. Make sure that you deliver a good ICO
experience with all the things mentioned here.