Steemit Business Plan Competition Entry
@aggroed must have been reading my mind when he wrote a post about a Steemit Business Plan Competition. There need to be more businesses on the blockchain. I've been thinking the same thing since almost the day I joined.
It seems several folks expressed concern that someone might steal their idea and beat them to the punch. I have no such fear. If I understand this contest well, @aggroed is going to back the winning idea and it could very well be a reality in a few months. When you have as many ideas as I have, you can afford to lose a few. Besides, I think good ideas should win even if it isn't me that does the winning. That said, here's my business plan idea.
Problem: In two years, 43% of the U.S. workforce is expected to be freelancing, up from 34% two years ago. That number could be 75% to 80% worldwide by 2030. Yet, there is currently no comprehensive content marketplace where content producers can meet content consumers and pay for digital content in any currency of choice. The few blockchain-based freelance marketplaces are focused on a single currency (e.g. ETHLance). Furthermore, freelancers do not often get to negotiate prices and terms on centralized marketplaces.
Vision: A hybrid content marketplace where content producers and consumers can meet, negotiate terms, and buy/sell digital content with payment terms in fiat, multiple other cryptocurrencies, STEEM, SBD, or the platform's SMT. Rollout to consist in three phases:
- Phase 1 – A marketplace where freelancers and content producers can meet and buy/sell digital content and work-for-hire content services using fiat and major cryptocurrencies as forms of payment.
- Phase 2 – A more enhanced version of Phase 1.
- Phase 3 – The real blockchain-based innovative-as-hell secret sauce*.
Mission: To join the marketplace is free for both content producers and consumers. Producers may choose to offer content in one of three payment methods:
- Annual membership fee. Payment in fiat dollars or select cryptocurrencies. No transaction fee.
- The platform takes 10% to 15% as a transaction fee.
- Payments accepted by SMT with no fees as long as content producer agrees to hold a minimum amount to stake their membership.
Content producers may move between these levels at will, and may refer consumers to other content producers better able to meet the consumer's needs. They may even offer referral fees for doing so.
Consumers have the following options:
- Pay the price the content producer is asking in any currency the producer is willing to take payment.
- Negotiate price and terms with the content producer. Content producer can decline, accept, or negotiate.
- Request original, unique content from the producer with proposed alternate terms. Content producer can propose other terms, deny the request, or accept the consumer's proposal.
The marketplace platform does not get involved in negotations or interactions. These are all peer-to-peer. The platform, however, does facilitate the payment process per each content producer's selected level of participation.
- First, I'll start building a network of creatives interested in such a marketplace. I'll gather these in a Discord server dedicated to this purpose and begin discussions with them on the features they'd most like to see.
- Secondly, I'll begin searching for team members who can handle the technological development necessary to create the platform.
- I'll also begin creating posts that address what is wrong with today's freelance marketplaces and why content negotiations between consumers and producers don't need a third-party referee. In this effort, I'll address some of the specific problems that some of the largest and most popular marketplaces today have and why the blockchain alternative is better.
- Finally, I'll network with people I'm currently affiliated with to find backers willing to invest in the early stage. I have access to a blockchain venture capitalist and several Steemit movers and shakers.
Budget and team: A minimum viable product for phase 1 can be built on WordPress using an out-of-the-box theme. Domain name = $10. Theme = $300. Hosting = $120/year. WordPress design and development = $3,000-$10,000.
The most important member of the team, the skills of which I do not possess, would be the technological development (WordPress, website, and blockchain) necesssary to build the platform. Other team member needs would arise once development is out of the way. Financial, marketing, and more. I've been a full-time freelance content producer since 2006 and understand this industry very well.
Phase 2 would consist of developing the SMT. Expertise in this subject area would be required and costs associated with its development would be necessary.
Phase 3 development would be to take the platform off of WordPress and aim for true unique development.
*Like others, I believe some ideas are so innovative they should be kept close to the chest until the proper time. I will say it's a borrowed play from @steemmonsters. ;-)
I'd love to see more businesses adopting the blockchain. A content marketplace would fit in well with Steemit's proof-of-brain mechanism and would complement Steemit in any ways. One-half of the audience (content producers) is already here.
Further supporting evidence: Blockchain-based social media expected to be in high demand in 2019.
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