The Greatest Trick Steemit Ever Pulled Was Convincing The World It Didn't Exist

in #steemit4 years ago

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Firstly let me make clear that, this is not a rage quit. I have never seen any point in rage quitting anything. Nor is this a whining post about whatever system being unfair or rigged or blah, blah, blah.

What this is, is a critique; it is an analysis of exactly where I believe Steemit has gone wrong; and why it doesn't have a million plus users and a Steem price over $1. The answer is quite glaringly obvious to anyone who thinks about it for a second, or has been in business before.

The reason can be summed up in one simple sentence; Steemit failed to tell enough people of its existence.

It is not rocket science, you can have the greatest idea in the world, but if you don't tell anyone about it, no one will ever get to experience it.

The Tale Of The Genie And The Rotten Apple

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Back around the end of the last century and the beginning of this one; a certain computer company was about to go bust. Unfortunately for them, their computers were around twice the cost of most other machines, and they had serious compatibility and power issues.

They decided to have one last throw of the dice to try and save their company. However they would move away from computers and move into what they saw, as a developing market; Mp3 players.

As you have no doubt realised, that company was Apple Macintosh, and as well as dropping the Macintosh from their name, they went hell for leather on the ipod. Which in itself was not that innovative, there had been other Mp3 players that looked, and worked in a similar way, that predated the ipod.

One could argue that the ipod had a larger memory than its rivals at the time; however larger memory can hardly be seen as innovation. Yet the ipod was a smash hit; at its height it sold more than 1000 units per hour, every hour, of every day, of every week, for around 2 years.

The ipod transformed Apple's fortunes, and turned it from a small boutique computer company, to one of the largest corporations in the world.

So why was the ipod so successful?

The success of the ipod can be summed up in a single, all encompassing word; marketing.

They marketed the shit out of that thing...

Apple's marketing was so successful, that before long, they didn't even have to have any branding on their adverts. A simple sillohuette of a person wearing white headphones was all it took to let you know that you were viewing an ipod advert.

In fact, their marketing was so successful, that at the time many people believed, and some still do; that Apple invented the Mp3 player.

Think about that; they weren't first to market, however through marketing, they made it seem like they were.

Steemit's Great Shame

I had great hopes for Steemit, I read way back in May, a thread on Reddit whereby Steemit CTO Dan Larimer, was defending the Steemit premine. Within that thread, he said that a lot of the premined coins would be converted to Bitcoin and then reinvested into the platform.

I heard Steemit CEO Ned Scott say as much on subsequent occasions, and I, perhaps naively thought that some of that investment would go into marketing.

Perhaps a lot of the issues come from the fact that Steemit is billed as a; user-driven, decentralised platform, yet still calls itself Steemit Inc; the Inc standing for Incorporated, and it has a structure which includes a Chief Executive Officer and a Chief Technical Officer.

However there seems to be a clear split for when Steemit behaves like an incorporated, centralised company, and when it behaves like a user-driven platform.

When it comes to all matters financial and technical, it seems Steemit is indeed a company. Decisions on how the site should look; proposed hardforks, and site reinvestment, are very much centralised at Steemit HQ. Whereas, brand development and marketing, seems to have been left to the user base.

Some people might point to Ned's little jolly around the world going to various Steem events; however this is not marketing. Showing up at an event, where everyone attending already knows about Steemit is at best a guest appearance; at worst, a complete waste of time.

Leaving the marketing to the user base was a disastrously naive decision. It meant that at once, all the marketing was going to be of an organic nature, which is not a bad thing. However this kind of organic marketing, leads to PR, which whilst valuable, does not have the same call to actions which will drive user numbers up.

Any public relations should be backed up by a concerted marketing campaign which spreads the word through the most suited medium.

What Now?

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There is no doubt that the crest of the wave has been missed, the time to really push and shout about Steemit would have been between June and August. At that point the price was soaring and Steemit was getting free PR.

Ned & Dan should not only have created a curating guild to make sure the front page was diverse enough to attract a non-cryptocurrency audience, they should have chucked some of those millions of dollars they have made at marketing.

A good place to start would have been to make sure an app was released at around the time the first payout happened, as then in-app advertising could have been utilised.

However the biggest thing they have missed is Facebook; if we look at the Huffington Post, which came out of nowhere to become one of the most popular blogging sites on the net. They understood early on the power of Facebook.

Whilst Steemit may be trying to overthrow and replace Facebook, the reality is, that Facebook is an incredibly successful marketing platform, hence the reason they made $11 billion last year. The Huffington realised that their audience was already on Facebook, all they had to do was find them.

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By targeting articles to varying demographics, they were able to get shares and likes for articles appearing on Huffington.

We can be left in no doubt, just how powerful it would have been to have been getting thousands of shares a day on Facebook, at a time when Steemit was flying high. To have just tried to achieve such a target organically, is woeful mismanagement.

The users were simply the PR tools, to boost the concerted marketing push, that never took place. They should never have been part of the marketing plan, as that was surely the road to unfocused chaos. Users will enthusiastically come up with the idea for advertising Steemit on a billboard; whilst this may get the founders rewarding them on the site, it won't do much to increase users. Whoever visited a site after seeing it whizz by on a billboard at 55 mph?

So now we are at a point whereby the Steem Facebook page has a few self praising articles that have been no doubt liked by the Steemit community and few others. The price will hold around it's current value, fluctuating enough to make it a tradeable coin, but not enough to make Steemit as attractive as it was in the summer.

It's not too late of course; Ned, Dan and the company that is Steemit, are worth millions of dollars and therefore can afford to hire a shit hot marketeer, and start telling people about this amazing platform.

Or, they could carry on doing what they are doing; which is cashing out all of their money and riding off into the sunset.

Perhaps they too, like Kaiser Soze will slip into the distant fog of legend, and maybe one day two people will have a debate as to whether Steemit ever even existed.

WHAT DO YOU RECKON; HAS STEEMIT BEEN MISMANAGED SHOULD THERE HAVE BEEN A MORE STRUCTURED MARKETING PLAN? OR AM I JUST SPOUTING RUBBISH OUT OF MY BOTTOM? LET ME KNOW BELOW!

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Incidentally, re: the ipod. Your take on it is a very typical "crypto" take on the success. All your focus is on marketing and hype, none on value. Its this kind of thinking that is a big part of the problem here on steemit. The problem is that hype can only take you so far.

Apple didnt didn't achieve dominance in the mp3 player industry with hype and advertising.... they achieved it by making a better product, with an easier to use interface and by backing that product up with an online store where you could buy things to play on your ipod for cheap.

They were the first to use firewire, and also the first to use USB (i think) (as opposed to serial cables and/or removable memory cards.

If you ever get the chance pick up one of creative's or archo's early mp3 players and take a look at what the interface was like

The second generation diamond rio had USB about two years before iPod. Where iPod really won was storage capacity (made possibly by using tiny disk drives instead of flash, which at the time was extremely limited), important because unauthorized file sharing (napster, etc.) had become massively popular with millions of users and the target customer base had very large libraries. Later on the music store became important, but it wasn't for early adopters, and like other authorized music download products, initially struggled to complete with unauthorized downloading due to: a) limited selection, b) poor value compared to buying a CD and ripping it, and c) DRM.

Nevertheless this supports your point that it wasn't all about marketing, although I'd argue marketing did play a significant role.

The second generation diamond rio had USB about two years before iPod

I was grasping around in my head for the Rio and also for the iriver when i wrote that comment and couldnt come up with either one. I was actually a huge fan of the keychain shaped irivers.... I was dead convinced that it was only a matter of time before they drove apple out of the mp3 player market:

But the diamond was my second choice. I had a later generation diamond the one with the red thumbstick.

IIRC, the interface on both was pretty terrible. you had to skip songs one by one, and the contacts on the buttons tended to get get worn out, making them less responsive, from the constant pressing.

I had one of those original Ipods. You are all correct in fact. It was a combination of marketing, a great product which some of the others also had but just not quite as slick and great design (which most of the competitors lacked).

If you ever get the chance pick up one of creative's or archo's early mp3 players and take a look at what the interface was like

I had a black Mp3 player from China about 2 or 3 months before the first ipod. It was USB, and I loaded songs onto it from my PC.

It basically looked like a small ipod; the display wasn't quite as nice, and it was smaller, however it looked almost identical, had a wheel and everything.

They took a product, improved it slightly, and then marketed the shit out of it. itunes happened because of the ipod, not the other way round.

Cg

I completely agree, it is amazing seeing dashes business model and how well they have become at marketing! They are creating a whole economy around there currency. steemit needs to do the same thing.

Great response! Totally concur!

The simple truth, imo, is that the devs have moved on to something else. Great post, @cryptogee, from someone who has no agenda! Cheers to you.

Thanks @fairytalelife, I fear you're right, I felt this a few months ago when I saw Dan post an article about the next big thing he was working on/interested in.

Cg

Other than the idea of a curating guild to manage the trending page, I completely agree. I've been saying it for a long time. There needs to be a lot more marketing/promotion of Steemit.

Of course, others will say something like, "But it's not ready to be marketed yet. It's still in BETA!"

Sure. And I suppose we can wait a couple of years until it's out of beta...and completely miss the boat. By then, there will surely be other platforms that picked up on the idea, improved it, and marketed to the masses. Steemit, Inc. has millions of dollars right now that they can use for development and marketing. There's no reason why they cannot simultaneously develop the UI (at a faster pace) and spend money on a marketing campaign. The excuses for not doing that ring quite hollow.

There's no reason why they cannot simultaneously develop the UI (at a faster pace) and spend money on a marketing campaign. The excuses for not doing that ring quite hollow.

Tell me about it! The amount of money that they have, it's literally a joke, Steemit looks basically the same as it did on launch. The extra features are ones that should have been there from day 1, such as replies, feed etc. That is social media 101.

Cg

"But it's not ready to be marketed yet. It's still in BETA!"

So market it. Pitch me. what does steem have to offer that you think you can sell people on. Yes, we will pay you slightly more than nothing (which is what many other sites arguably pay) to post or read. Most people aren't willing to cross the street for a little more than nothing. WHat is it that youre selling? A lottery ticket and pocket change. A social platform where there really isnt that much legitimate social interation?

Good points, especially the one about it being a social platform without much legitimate social interaction. A subject I covered in a previous article called Steemit's Social Confusion.

However there is a lot to sell at the moment; censorship and fake news are big topics at the moment, Steemit has a lot to offer in those areas. Steemit has a payment system that could make it easier for people to transfer money internationally.

The reward system now is tiny because the user base is small, if a post were getting 5000 minnows instead of 500 voting on it, then the average reward would be bigger. The reward system is not to be sniffed at, it is a killer USP and has wide reaching implications.

The quality of the content can be viewed much more subjectively; however, in my mind, there is quality original content, and that in itself is a selling point.

All in all there are a couple of key ways that the site should be marketed if we're ever going to grow Steemit beyond enthusiasts and crypto heads.

Cg

However there is a lot to sell at the moment; censorship and fake news are big topics at the moment

Put this to the same 20 person test you describe above. Ask someone "are you on facebook?" then ask them "have you ever been censored by facebook" . I think youll get 20 yesses to the first question and probably 18 or 19 noes to the second question.

Even accepting the premise that Steemit is meaningfully more censorship resistant than other SM platforms (and this in and of itself is debatable), i really don't see censorship as a huge issue for most SM users.

Steemit has a payment system that could make it easier for people to transfer money internationally.

Not serious people. At least not yet, though i believe there is a great deal of potential in this regard. Thats what I do for a living, and its also the main reason im here.

ut this to the same 20 person test you describe above. Ask someone "are you on facebook?" then ask them "have you ever been censored by facebook" . I think youll get 20 yesses to the first question and probably 18 or 19 noes to the second question.

That's a matter for debate and conjecture, who knows?

Steemit has a payment system that could make it easier for people to transfer money internationally.

Not serious people. At least not yet, though i believe there is a great deal of potential in this regard. Thats what I do for a living, and its also the main reason im here.

Erm, I do believe you contradicted yourself in less than a sentence; unless you're saying you're not a serious person, even though you do it for a living?

Cg

Erm, I do believe you contradicted yourself in less than a sentence; unless you're saying you're not a serious person, even though you do it for a living?

I don't use it for that. Or reccomend it to my clients. I believe it has the potential to be a useful financial tool (and its that potential that brought me here and has kept me here), and i am watching it to see if it realizes its potential. But right now, that's all i see there financially. Potential.

I think @sigmajin means that for a normal business person trying to transfder funds to another company, as part of a business transaction, Steem is not a serious way to transfer money.

But he is serious about trying to make plentiful money on Steemit, and using Steem. At least that'd be my take on it.

The reward system now is tiny because the user base is small, if a post were getting 5000 minnows instead of 500 voting on it, then the average reward would be bigger

The number of votes (or even stake votes) does not matter. If many posts (not just one) get more votes then it still divides up much the same way. However, I basically agree with you that if there were good prospects for growth the price would be a lot higher and the payouts would be as well.

If many posts (not just one) get more votes then it still divides up much the same way.

Ah, of course, I didn't factor that in, obvious when you think about it. But yes, growth is still a key factor, more users is always more attractive to outsiders.

Cg

I think at first it was more about a proof of concept. Once it was proven that this model could work now they go about scaling it. Once it is scaled they will launch a massive advertising campaign... that is my understanding at least.

If that is true, that is the equivalent of starting a Formula 1 racing team and saying; "we'll get sponsors once we're world champions."

The time to market and advertise is at the start; especially with Steemit, when there was a lot of interest and money flying around.

Cg

What good is it to bring everyone in if the site can't handle that kind of traffic and the currency is not distributed enough to get the site to function more normally? In my eyes it seems like both of those need to be fixed before we try to bring the masses in. The lack of steem distribution is the system's major flaw in my eyes. That has to be fixed, and fast...

Now, I didn't say I agreed with it or that it was the best strategy, but that seems to be the plan at this point. At least from my understanding. If there is no plan for major advertising at some point then the site is in trouble...

If Apple adopted the same policy, they wouldn't even exist as a company. How many times have you heard that this iphone, or that imac has so and so flaws, needs to be recalled, etc. They put stuff out, then let their users tell them what is wrong, but all the time, they keep on marketing.

Cg

This is in reply to your latest comment, due to nesting limit.

Look nobody is disagreeing that marketing is important. We get it, everyone gets it. However, what good is marketing if you bring in millions of people if they all leave? Now you have millions of people with negative impressions of the site telling all their friends how terrible it is. Please tell me how that helps the site long term?

You build a viable product and then you market it. We are still on step one right now. Will that be steemit's downfall? Maybe... but that is the better option then bringing in the masses right now. They won't stay... the current numbers prove this. For every new user we bring in, we lose an older one. The numbers aren't constant right now because everyone is staying, they are constant because we are losing roughly the same number we are bringing in. If we were keeping more of the users we are bringing in right now I would agree with you, but we aren't, so I don't.

However, what good is marketing if you bring in millions of people if they all leave? Now you have millions of people with negative impressions of the site telling all their friends how terrible it is. Please tell me how that helps the site long term?

I don't believe that would have happened, this in my humble opinion is a quite credible timeline of events.

July - 1st Steemit payout - app launched

August - Market cap hits $100 million dollars - Last 30 days has been a flurry of in-app advertising and Facebook advertising (boosting quality posts to target audiences) Upshot of this is a demographic map of new Steemit users.

August - MNBC, and The Guardian newspaper write articles about Steemit - More targeted Facebook advertising and Google adwords. Upshot is a groundswell of users, possibly leading to the first million.

September - Negative feedback about the UI is overshadowed by the new "Steemit millionaires" making big in the blogging world.

OK, I won't go on and obviously I've oversimplified, and ignored the hack. However what I'm trying to get across is, if Steemit HQ were properly prepared. They would have prepared for a huge influx of users and got together a tight marketing plan.

The strategy should always be, if we make X, we will spend X - Y on marketing. Because it is advertising that generates custom.

So what do we have now instead? We still have a dwindling audience and disgruntled users; we just don't have enough to absorb the bad times.

At least with more users, there are more annoyed ones; however that means there are more happy cheerleaders spreading the good word of Steemit.

Cg

Comparing Apple to Steemit is ridiculous, and I mean that nicely, but Apple is a very mature company that is also the most valuable company on the planet. Steemit hasn't even been around for a year yet. Apple first built a product that they felt was ready for sale, once it was ready they marketed it. Steemit.com is not ready for sale. When it is the marketing will come. It would have been nice if all of this could have been found out before it had thousands of users, but this is the hand we are dealt at this point. All we can do is make the most of it going forward.

Oh dear, you're completely missing the point. If you know any successful business people, either personally or via forum or blog, ask them how important they think marketing when it comes to new ideas and products.

The unanimous answer you get should enlighten you to the plain simple truth of the matter. No marketing = no business.

but this is the hand we are dealt at this point. All we can do is make the most of it going forward.

Or we can make a bit of noise and demand change; I know which I prefer.

Cg

reply to your latest response...

You make some good points and maybe had Steemit.inc had you when they launched this thing we would be sitting pretty right now ;)

However, since they didn't and we can't go back in time... what do we do now?

We go on the offensive, all is definitely not lost. Steemit has a war chest of millions of dollars, so it can use a tiny fraction of that to make a huge difference.

  1. Targeted Facebook ads - With FB you can target male or females of any age range in any location where they have Facebook (almost everywhere). So you start to target certain articles to certain demographics.

For instance, I get a lot of New Scientist stuff on my FB feed and things like it, as they have figured out I'm into that stuff. So you take some of the quality science articles on Steemit and post them on the Steemit FB page and pay for them to go to certain people.

Start with males 20-25 and go from there. Rinse and repeat with different categories of articles.

What this does is it gives you data on who is liking and sharing Steemit content. Which means that you can target those people big time. It becomes like a snowball rolling down a hill, the more people you target who like your stuff, the more shares you get, the more people likely to be into your stuff, see it.

This will lead to a greater brand awareness; this may not increase users initially (especially as there is no "subscribe" feature), however it will get a greater number of people coming to Steemit to read articles.

  1. Google adwords - to some respects, the data you get from FB will fuel some of the Google campaign. Inasmuch as you are using keywords from popular articles to drive the campaign.

Here you can have much clearer "calls to action" making people aware of the benefits of signing up and becoming part of "the community". A well thought out Adwords campaign will lead to an increased user base.

  1. In-app advertising - This is probably the furthest away as there is no official Steemit app controlled by Steemit HQ. However once there is, good research in this area can lead to huge influxes of users.

The problem most new companies have with implementing strategies such as these, is budget. However Steemit does not have this problem, their problem is expertise, and possibly willing.

If I was in charge, I would be hiring people who could make the above things happen.

#mytwocents :-)

Cg

@cryptogee, I wouldn't mind talking to you via PM.

I think you're on to something, and I'd like to discuss it further.

Just message me via the steemit.chat website. I'm Kitten on there.

Hey Cg!

I'd never accuse you of spouting rubbish however I do still think it's still too early to predict Steem's demise. It's still less than a year old which is nothing in terms of startups or cryptos.

I think the July 2016 Steem price bubble, was in hindsight too much too soon. It no doubt caught everyone involved on the hop. The reality is the platform wasn't ready to absorb millions of users.

Remember the security hacks?
The crazy inflation?
The two year locked in Steem?
The unsophisticated voting practices/ reward disparity (which still exist)?

I wouldn't read too much into the price... it is neither the make or break of Steem long term... Cryptos get pumped everyday, Steem will be alright...

From what I've have seen, the lull in price, has allowed the focus to shift towards how to retain a critical mass of users. That will ultimately make or break Steemit. Remember thr July bubble brought disillusionment for a lot of new users who came on the hope of riches and got peanuts!

I agree marketing is key, however as important is a shit hot product that people can buy into once they get here.

Hey Nanzo, long time!

I think you're right about the fact that the platform may not have been ready to absorb millions of users. However there are two things I would say to that.

Firstly, I'd repeat what I said to @jrcornel above; is that Apple would not exist as a company, if they waited till they got stuff perfect before releasing it and marketing the hell out of it. They are able to do this, because they built up a dedicated following through "innovative" cough design and tech.

Steemit could easily have done the same, sure lots would have been disillusioned, however many more would (and have) ignored the glitches and sung Steemit's praises.

Secondly, I would say that hacks, and floods of new users should be in the plans, not preparing for success is as foolhardy as not preparing for failure.

We have a shit hot product, with a shit hot concept, it's time to tell everyone about it.

Cg

Facebook did not have millions of people leaving it in the early days. It only has that now with a userbase in the billions.

Whoops, replied to wrong comment..

The point is; with any new platform there will always be a flow of people coming and going, and I can guarantee you that without marketing, the going flow will always be bigger than the coming one.

Cg

The nature of a viral product is one which spreads based merely on the satisfaction of users and their desire to share it with others. Bitcoin did not have a marketing budget, and even Facebook did not either. Do you remember ads for Facebook? Probably not, we all joined because our friends were joining.

The difference there is that Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency and still took a couple of years before it could claim "viral" growth.

Facebook was the second mass-adopted social platform after Myspace which had millions of users. Facebook made the UI better and therefore it did not take long for those millions of users to switch to the new platform.

The difference now is, there are several mass-adopted social platforms, all fighting for attention. The new ones that gain attention, are the ones that use the "big 3" of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to the best of their advantage.

On top of that there is in-app advertising which was not around in the days of Facebook or Bitcoin. If it was, there can be little doubt that Facebook would have utilised the medium to spread its message.

Cg

Patience cryptogee-kun. We are at the cusp of all you seek. I feel your disappointment in that we have not yet achieved the acknowledgement this platform deserves. It is indeed important that we seek out ever-widening circles of adoption. Steemit is on the bleeding edge of development. There are big things coming this year... We are building the community we need to push beyond the early adopters... When the switch flips to on, there will be no going back. With the masses, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. We are at the front lines of a battle, waiting for the right moment to leap forward. It hasn't passed.

With the masses, you never get a second chance to make a first impression.
Exactly!

As far as being on the cusp is concerned; I fear we'll be hanging on the cusp so long, we'll get cusp cramp :-)

Cg

I feel ya... that's just the weight of the next impending financial crisis looming... makes the cusp very difficult to bear.

Lol, I am a lot more optimistic than that about my future finances :-) I just meant things like; the nesting problem. The fact that you can only have six or so replies to a comment.

I can do very basic code, and from my understanding; sorting this out would not be difficult. However months later, the problem still exists. This is the kind of terrible mismanagement that is going on at the moment.

So either Ned & Dan pull their fingers out and get busy, or give up control of Steemit and hand it to the users in an open source fashion; like they once claimed they so desperately wanted to do.

Cg

Nesting limit will be gone by end of month, with HF17, if I'm not mistaken. Also, posts will be infinitely editable! Also, subcommunities.. and so much more. It's coming. It's just hard (impossible) to see right now. ;)

I think there is a great team in Blacksburg, working on Steemit. And now we have another team working on Busy, and a few more teams in the wings getting suited up for battle.

By the end of '17, how many Steem front-ends will there be? ;)

What will the combined network effect of multiple front-ends be?

Nesting limit will be gone by end of month

Hmm, where/when have I heard that one before?

By the end of '17, how many Steem front-ends will there be? ;)

It matters not if nobody is aware of them, through lack of marketing :-)

What will the combined network effect of multiple front-ends be?

Pretty negligeble without marketing.

Steemit will live and die by its users; it can only gain significant users by marketing. Ergo Steemit will live and die by its marketing.

Cg

If the marketing is left to the users then let us at least have an affiliate program :)

Apart from that ... I promised myself that I won't comment Steemit politics.

But it does need (not necessarily in this order):

  1. affiliate program
  2. much better UX
  3. platform support for communities
  4. PR division
  5. marketing plan
  6. an easy way to create spinoffs for substeemits outside steemit.com

Yes, I didn't touch blockchain coding at all :)

Ps: you've got a follower #958. Only 42 left to reach a huge milestone :)

I also have not liked to comment on Steem politics recently; however I think this has to be discussed. The reaction; or lack thereof, from Steemit HQ will speak volumes.

Cg

Totally disagree. Steemit has much more of a 'churn' problem than a marketing problem. There is no point in trying to pull lots of people in if you can't keep your existing users. In early July virtually every user who visited Steemit.com came back again. Suddenly that changed later in the month, and only 1/3 of visitors would return. And as the price declined, many more became disaffected and left.

Disaffected users are a huge problem for a new start up. When you think about joining, the first thing you'll likely do is ask someone who used it. If the people who left outnumber the people who are satisfied, you have a big problem.

Despite all that I'm optimistic. The decline ended months ago, in price and user activity. The website is improving, and we have growth in areas which I see as promising. Problems get addressed quickly and everyone moves on the next drama. I actually think this is the calm before the storm, which is why I continue to buy a little more Steem each month.

^Absolutely this. Everything you hear on steemit, especially post-steemfest it outreach outreach outreach we gotta tell people that steemit is a thing because otherwise they won't know.

Guess what. They know. Theyre simply not interested. they don't feel that the platform has much to offer them.
And thats really not a totally unreasonable position.

Guess what. They know. Theyre simply not interested.

Test that theory and ask 20 random people on the street if they have heard about Steemit, I guarantee you you'll get 20 nos.

Cg

you would probably get 17 noes for bitcoin. Im not saying that steemit is a household word. It doesnt have to be for significant growth. But the people we have a chance with (friends of active members, people interested in next gen social networks, people interested in blogging or crypto, etc) know were here. They just dont see as we have anything to offer them.

How many of your friends have you told about steemit? How many were interested and became active?

How many of your friends have you told about steemit? How many were interested and became active?

In its height, I told about 20 friends, about half of those were likely to become active, and about half of those, actually became active.

One is still active, the others left because of similar reasons I brought up. They felt that it was an excellent opportunity to get in early with a platform that was going to be a huge promotion tool. Only to see complete inactivity on the marketing front and a self congratulatory attitude from the site bigwigs.

Cg

Funny thing is, early July I had a 100% success rate in getting people onto Steemit. I got about 20 people onto it just by proselytizing it. Then, suddenly, it was really hard to get people onto it. My experience coincides with the divergence in the graph shown by @gavvet here:

https://steemit.com/stats/@gavvet/the-state-of-steemit-com-web-visitors

I think early july, the site still had something to offer in terms of social interaction/discussion. And there was a lot of percieved forward progress. Mid july people were sticking around because they saw the yuge monies, and even if they weren't getting any the monies were huge enough to keep trying to get lucky at least for a little while.

I mean think about right now though. RIght now ned and many of the other steemit inc people pay someone to read and vote on steemit content for them. So basically, we can't get the dude who owns the joint interested. What chance do we have with the man on the street?

Funny thing is, early July I had a 100% success rate in getting people onto Steemit. I got about 20 people onto it just by proselytizing it.

Exactly, and that could only go so far; imagine if there had been a big marketing campaign then. So that as well as hearing about it from you, your friends were aware of the multi-platform campaign.

The word would have spread like wildfire.

Cg

To reply to your below comment because of the (should have been sorted out months ago) nesting problem.

I mean think about right now though. RIght now ned and many of the other steemit inc people pay someone to read and vote on steemit content for them. So basically, we can't get the dude who owns the joint interested. What chance do we have with the man on the street?

Exactly!!

Cg

Well I think a concerted marketing campaign would have solved that churn problem by insuring there were more joining than leaving. Facebook has millions of people leaving it each day, however it has tens of millions joining.

My worry is that Steemit HQ have no idea about marketing and/or do not think it's important. They have this misty eyed view that everything will happen organically when it won't. Marketing Steemit is hard now; as it's very hard to get people who aren't into crypto excited at potential rewards of pennies, however it is not impossible. Though it must be tried to be achieved.

Cg

If someone influential doesn't get their head out of wherever it is, this is going to be Myspace 2.0, but with out the successful part.

The reason steemit is in decline and steem is on the verge of an all time low in price is not because the founders, and especially dan, don't know what to do. It's because they don't care. Dan is especially interested in wielding is ill-gotten influence, simply to feel the power. He doesn't mean to destroy the value of steem, but the possibility doesn't weigh in his decision making either.

He has never done the smart thing or the right thing, just whatever makes him feel most in control.

I know it is easy to hate the messenger (me), but look at the price. The constantly declining price is a result of eroding confidence in the leaders of this project to have any reasonable priorities.

If you could dump endless amounts of a coin, exert nearly totalitarian power over a platform, and end up rich with no consequences, wouldn't you do it? This is why the price, payouts, and participation continue to decline.

Dan and the rest of the so-called developers can't put their heads down and evolve the platform because the need for indulgence is too great. They would rather pick winners and losers of the reward pool, post blog drivel, go on a war against vested members of the community, and roll back gains by any community members who are not insiders. And ned, the supposed CEO of steemit, is incompetent to manage his employees.

So yeah, it's doomed. Don't expect a crook to change his stripes.

At the beginning of this whole journey, I would probably have disagreed with you, however I find it hard to at the moment, simply because there's nothing to point to to disprove you.

Cg

I respectfully disagree with all you have written here. It's sad to see such vitriol being heaped upon this team, and attacking people's character in this way is so completely poisonous.

Just wanted to register my dissenting opinion here so your sentiment doesn't remain unopposed.

You can brown nose all you like, it isn't going to stop the train wreck. Let's see what you have to say when dan and ned resume their weekly dumping. They have already cashed out millions of dollars. I can't wait to see what you say when it picks up again in a few weeks. My guess is you will be too spineless to admit you were wrong.

You're so dramatic. You think this is a suicide pact or something. People can do whatever they want with their property. So, any alleged dumping, by whomever... well, the more folks sell, the more people like me will buy it up and lower our average cost. Wrong? About being a crook? This doesn't even deserve a response.

I agree with your post. What bother me the most is that they never tell us what they are doing at any moment. If they stuck they should tell us.Maybe we can help somehow. It's very chaotic right now.

It's great that many are hungry for moar growth and chomping at the bit to get going. Given what is being implemented as a result of the roadmap, patience is appropriate. Resource is precious, you don't want to pull the trigger half-cocked. We are in beta for a reason. I imagine those working day in and day out to get Steemit / Steem ready could do with a little support and faith given there is plenty of evidence that they are working hard.

sigh One day you will all realise that I'm right. You can't make a success of anything without marketing it, regardless of how "ready" you think that thing is. If it's ready enough for a public website, it's ready enough to be marketed.

there is plenty of evidence that they are working hard.

That wasn't the point; anyone can work hard, working smart is the issue here.

Cg

Marketing requires the use of finite resource, if you are going to market a product, it should be when you are likely to get the maximum effect/return on that expenditure. In order to do that, you want the product to be so good it effectively sells itself....clearly Steemit is not quite there. The product needs to be in a state where there is the maximum chance of retention once people are made aware. I doubt anyone would disagree that marketing is important but how and when it is implemented is very important. So you are already right about marketing ;) I just wouldn't expect the Steemit.inc led, community galvanised push to occur until they have had a chance to implement critical changes outlined in the roadmap first. There really is no need to rush. Steemit and Steem are doing incredibly well and the competition is light years away. We can afford to get things right before triggering a massive marketing campaign. There are many things we can do in the interim to prepare the community to support that future effort though.

We can afford to get things right before triggering a massive marketing campaign. There are many things we can do in the interim to prepare the community to support that future effort though.

Very similar to what Nokia said about the smartphone market....... just before they went bust.

Cg

We can afford to get things right before triggering a massive marketing campaign. There are many things we can do in the interim to prepare the community to support that future effort though.

The head of Nokia said something similar about smartphones just before they went bust.

Cg

I imagine Steve jobs said something similar at Apple before the iPod launched them into the stratosphere.

Nope, Jobs simply launched the ipod and marketed the shit out of it; warts and all. Funnily enough Apple still do that today, long after the great man has departed. Think about it; if you're an Apple user, you know what I'm talking about.

I'm fairly sure 2 out of their last 3 phones got massive recalls; remember the laptop that gave you 3rd degree burns if you used it on your lap? Or what about the phone that didn't make calls if you held the metal bit around the edge?

However they still had queues round the block, from sheep wanting the latest of their unfinished, untested products. Why?

Because marketing.

Simples.

Cg

Sorry, but It is just another needless talk about a theme, we must not talk about at all. There are a lot of people not understanding what a BETA version in software design means. A BETA is just a trial of function. It is neither a final layout nor a promise of function at all. We all taking part in a public trial of Steemit Inc. because we are fascinated by the ideas of Dan Larimer and Ned Scott. There's no need to talk about faults or advantages. We are just dummies in a big crash test. The final system might be total different of the existing one and if somebody doesn't want to take part in a big Beta-trial, nobody is forcing you to do so.

I'm getting a bit sick of all the sycophantic responses. It reminds me of the stories of the Roman senators holding games and discussing trivial things as Rome burned.

Cg

NOTE: This is just my opinion. I'm limited by my knowledge and experience:

I think that marketing this for the mass audience right away would not be a good idea. At this point, we won't be able to handle making a lot of people understand about the regular changes that happen. We won't also be able to handle their complaints.

Maybe we first need to finalize how the UX and UE should be/look for the long run and make the team larger. After these, we can proceed to the marketing strategies. I think it's just right to follow the roadmap that they made.

I think they're working on all of these aspects as much as they could. They created this amazing platform so I think they're doing the same with their plans and projects.

I don't think we'd want another bubble by overvaluation (if that was the reason). If it happens again, then a huge part of the money allocated for marketing strategies would be a waste. We'll get back to the current times where there are only a small percentage that are active. By then, a lot more people will be spreading false conclusions.

I'm also certain that other competing blockchain-based social media platforms will also be experiencing similar problems to what we have right now. They would all ave to go through with this as well. In that case, Steemit is really better.

So let's continue supporting them.

If (and only if) you're feeling down, which is unavoidable because we're the great early adopters, you could try taking a break for a while.

If (and only if) you're feeling down, which is unavoidable because we're the great early adopters, you could try taking a break for a while.

Lol, this has nothing to do with being down, it has everything to do with understanding business. No marketing = no future.

A company that tries to save money by cutting marketing, is equivalent to a man stopping his watch to save time.

David Ogilvy

Cg

This is a critical conversation to have. Thanks for posting this and for highlighting the importance of good, or even just decent marketing. We desperately need a phased, well-branded and regionally connected marketing plan. I was disappointed to see that the much anticipated roadmap did not include greater detail on this issue... Anyway, I'm still a steem-optimist, and the ship is still afloat. We need the "inc. whales" to take strong action on this and be better (more consistent) in terms of updating the community on their progress...

For me one of the biggest failings, if not the biggest, is the fact that no Steem app was launched by Steemit inc and therefore all in-app advertising was cut off from us.

Steemit will survive, but the question is can it be made to thrive? I think yes, with the right marketing plan behind it...

We shall see.

Cg

About this:

Apple's marketing was so successful, that before long, they didn't even have to have any branding on their adverts. A simple sillohuette of a person wearing white headphones was all it took to let you know that you were viewing an ipod advert.

I 100% agree with you, we must promote steemit as well...
Oh ya, the first image, remember me to Bad Hat Harry productions logo. Hehe...

This post is remarkable! I wish I had caught it fresh last month and gotten in on the comments then. The comments are better than the post and the post is awesome, even if you are blowing off some Steem, pun intended of course. I'm going to rEsteem it and follow you for more. And I'm in total agreement as I am ALL about Marketing ; )
Imgur

PS: Absolutely LOVE the Novel so far!

For me the strategy isn't the point; although I have read your post (I think I read it at the time) and agree with the sentiment. However this shouldn't be left up to us; Steemit Inc has a bank balance in the millions; they need to spend some of that money on marketing.

Cg

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