Blockchain: A New Marketing Paradigm

Eventually (in the not-too-distant future), blockchain will impact most commerce.  It will make business and operations more efficient, more accountable, more transparent and less expensive.

The rise of cryptocurrencies as a speculative asset, culminating at the end of 2017, as well as the crypto bear market of 2018, may dominate the hype cycle, but the real work of blockchain development is still in an early stage of changing the world.

In terms of blockchain as a base platform for practical applications, the financial technology sector has captured a chunk of the spotlight and the battle lines are being drawn for a new era.  How much (or little) traditional banks and governments will be able to influence global exchange of value is in the process of being determined.

However, all sectors can, and ultimately will, be influenced by blockchain.

On a fundamental level, blockchains cut out expensive middlemen such as banks and lawyers, so the opportunities for increased productivity are significant.

In relation to marketing, the following article, 7 Ways to Build Your Brand with Blockchain Marketing, suggests a new marketing paradigm:

By contrast, the blockchain offers a different approach to digital ads and marketing. The decentralized, peer-to-peer model brings the customer into equal, dynamic dialogues with businesses, and lets customers generate monetized marketing content for their favorite brands through that engagement. This implies that in the earned media blockchain ecosystem, we are all equal and active partners.

Perhaps one of the more interesting opportunities for marketers is the promise of bypassing advertising middlemen, such as Google and Facebook, and putting messages directly in front of those who are interested.  At a reduced cost, no less.  In fact, the ad payments would go to those consuming the messages. (And/or those creating messages for the brand).

Of course, in the same way that banks are going to do their best to stay relevant, by placing themselves within the blockchain, advertising middlemen, Google, Facebook, et al, will do the same. It seems probable that their ban on crypto ads this year is an attempt to pause the momentum so they can evaluate the space to their advantage.

I do not suspect that Google and Facebook will go away (although some other intermediaries probably will).  They need ad revenue to survive and they’ll figure out some way to maintain a slice of that pie.  However, expect  that names of companies with whom we are yet not familiar, will come to be just as well known, and perhaps more so, for no other reason than providing more value for less cost.

Regardless of how the advertising media landscape plays out, marketers and consumers will win.