MIP39c2-SP: 9 Author: Kathleen Chu Contributors: Sahabia Yakubu, Kaori Sato, Francesco Alberti Status: Rejected Date Applied: 2021-03-25 Date Ratified: <yyyy-mm-dd>
The MakerDAO community is energetic and highly engaged, thanks to the core community’s concerted efforts and initiatives. The unit recognizes that reaching new audiences and users is vital for Dai’s mass adoption. Based on that conclusion, the unit is formed to be dedicated to outreach.
We are proposing this unit to the DAO because it delivers the following:
- A clear, consistent, and coordinated communication across key channels
- A cohesive global branding with a strong focus on marketing strategy tailored for targeted key markets that match the needs suitable for each stage of growth in Dai awareness and adoption
The core unit identifies targeted audiences and helps them learn about MakerDAO as it enters the next growth phase. The team builds on the recognition MakerDAO has gained in the cryptocurrency space and expands into the mainstream.
The unit will increase general awareness of MakerDAO and focus on Dai adoption by creating specific marketing initiatives for each targeted market.
The marketing activities will also be designed based on the needs of other units at MakerDAO to achieve our organizational objectives.
The strategic communications portion protects the credibility of MakerDAO by providing an accurate understanding of MakerDAO and clear and consistent messaging.
The unit highlights milestones and provides information in a language that anyone can understand.
As the Maker Foundation dissolves, more information and clarity will be required during this period of change.
- The DAO needs a team with ample experience and a proven track record to ensure a smooth transition through coherent communication to the general public and regional communities.
- The unit will also jumpstart the marketing efforts without delays to further expand the MakerDAO ecosystem. The team consists of individuals that have persistently demonstrated their ability to achieve results.
Strategic Marcomms Core Unit
Consistent and strategic branding strengthens the name of MakerDAO and creates value. The team filters out the complexity of MakerDAO and makes information easy to digest for our targeted audience. The unit’s expertise in branding and communication is vital for a decentralized organization such as MakerDAO.
It increases the visibility of Dai and promotes Dai adoption through the following mandate:
- Represent the interests of the MakerDAO community
- Help target audience understand the benefits of Dai by providing educational content and events
- Plan, initiate and execute marketing and community activities on behalf of the project
- Collaborate with other units to achieve objectives identified for MakerDAO
- Be the point of contact for major media across the globe
- Facilitate interviews with MakerDAO facilitators and relevant contributors to create value through PR strategies
- Inherit and manage key social media platforms, MakerDAO’s homepage, and blog
- Adapt and modify strategy as needed (localization, hypothesis validation discovery, legal climate change, etc.)
The unit will help MakerDAO grow by
- Increasing the awareness of Dai and the Maker Protocol
- Boosting Dai adoption through promotions and partnerships
- Addressing marketing and PR-related needs from other core units such as priming potential partners for business development and RWA adoption-related discussions
- Having an evolving and collaborative mindset to grow with other units and the community
Based on a SWOT analysis, one can see that even though Dai captures all the advantages of blockchain, its growth has lagged behind centralized stablecoin. Without a more aggressive approach, it could potentially put MakerDAO further behind others. This can be tackled in many fronts, including collaboration of CUs such as RWA, Growth, and this Strategic Marcomms MIP put forward.
With Strategic Marcomms, our focus will be on boosting our visibility in jurisdictions where Dai has gained legal status, while seeking ways to expand our PR activities in countries where legality remains in question.
Boosting our visibility means a) an increase in marketing and ads spending for channels we identify as key for our targeted audience b) boosting visibility through earned, as well as paid media, utilizing PR agencies
Key strategies for our unit include the following:
- Lowering the entry barriers for new potential users through hosting events, community building, PR, and educational content
- Finding narratives that connect with our targeted users and align with their values through storytelling
- Highlighting benefits that our targeted users deem most valuable through messaging
- Developing and activating programs that can bolster our marketing initiatives
Target audience groups and key markets:
- Digital native-generation and crypto users and who haven’t used Dai
- Individuals in the financial sector and the technology sector who tend to have a basic understanding of the critical components of open finance or DeFi
- Sectors identified by other facilitators as key to their success such as examples of verticals listed by the Growth Core Unit.
Market and use-case specific
- Countries experiencing hyperinflation in regions such as Latin America
- Region of a large population with mobile, but relatively low number of bank accounts such as Africa
- Those living in countries with near-zero interest rates such as the EU, Japan
- Regions with a substantial remittance need such as Southeast Asia and LatAm
- We can achieve our objectives more quickly through economies of scale in the world’s three biggest economies: the U.S., China, and Japan
The unit is open to evolve with the MakerDAO community and partnership.
The team plans to tackle the targeted audience by introducing several global-wide programs that are most likely to achieve results.
The unit will implement the following initiatives and focus on the marketing channels listed below with several new ideas to be introduced in stage throughout the year:
Word-of-Mouth - Dai’s benefits and the story of MakerDAO can be explained more effectively with more credibility when it is from a third-party such as Dai users and partners, and advocates. The unit will pursue and provide opportunities for others to share their experiences.
Storytelling - Deliver actual stories on how our global community members use Dai in their life to motivate current and prospective users’ interaction with Dai and Maker. Stories will be conveyed in our blog and/or on podcasts.
Scalability - The team plans to introduce programs that enable us to extend our reach effectively.
Ambassador program - Develop and activate a program that can bring scalability to the unit to increase the visibility of Maker and Dai
Translation program - Create and launch a translation program that expands our reach by providing information in more languages identified as key.
Marketing campaigns and advertising - The unit will conduct marketing and advertising campaigns for our target user segments. They include joint marketing campaigns with partners and buying ads on platforms where our target user segments are. The unit takes all marketing or advertising opportunities into consideration.
PR - Utilizing earned media, shared media, and owned media adequately
News outlets (earned media) - Identify audiences and key news outlets for the audiences, reach out to those targeted news outlets, and pitch stories when major milestones reached
Social Media (shared media) - Specific content planned and scheduled to share regularly with a targeted audience in each major social media platforms
Blog and other contents (owned media) - Create blog content and utilize platforms such as Podcast, or Clubhouse to gather audience and followers.
One size doesn’t fit all. In addition to the global strategy, the unit adopts a bottom-up approach to extend our reach in regional markets by adopting the best practices for each market under a shared vision.
Targeted regions are in different stages, with unique challenges and opportunities:
North America is the most prominent crypto market. Our approach in the region is to increase our visibility through PR activities, collaborating with partners while running advertisement and marketing campaigns. Marketing activities will be planned and executed following the guidelines of U.S. regulation.
- Collaborate with blockchain news outlets on finance and technology, utilizing earned and paid media to increase visibility.
- Run social media ads for educational and informative content to reach more target audiences.
- Partner with institutions such as universities and blockchain technology labs and sponsoring hackathons to position Maker as a thought leader and educator.
- Enable meetup pods in the major North American cities in all tech and incubation houses.
- Sponsor large technology conferences such as SXSW, partnering with various festivals for DAI payments.
South America has experienced a surge in cryptocurrency usage in the last couple of years. Issues like hyperinflation, low wages, and government policy make stablecoins a necessity and expose market fit as default for the whole region. Marketing campaigns and educational initiatives are needed to help people understand the value proposition of Maker and DAI, and how it could have a positive impact on their ability to store, manage, and spend their savings.
- Boost public recognition of DAI in the Region by increasing the audience and reach of our social media channels.
- Expand our activities by finding ambassadors in other countries where our reach is limited.
- Boost the use of DAI in the region as a method of exchange and savings by promoting the P2P marketplaces already established (Venezuela, Colombia) and creating new ones (Perú, Chile, Ecuador, Bolivia, Paraguay).
- Hold Meetups focused on using the tools available for DAI and MakerDAO.
- Placement of advertising material in specific areas, such as posters and billboards.
A very active region with several internationally renowned blockchain hubs with slightly different focuses such as favorable regulations, favorable taxation, high quality financial system, high standards for privacy, rich startup ecosystem, or special concerns on democracy/governance. Europe also boasts many grassroot blockchain-related organizations and highly regarded crypto-native organizations; it also features a growing number of mainstream and government-related entities getting involved in blockchain (universities, startup centers and more).
- Our top priority in Europe will be to leverage the local communities for growth in Dai awareness, onboarding and usage. This will be achieved via presentations, classes, courses and workshops.
- Collaborations, partnerships and an ambassador program will be put in place to supercharge this effort. With relevant organizations and communities from within and outside of the crypto industry.
- Identify and reach out to audiences and communities that are ripe for crypto adoption. This may include digital natives studying blockchain at university, communities who have a local currency in web2 or paper format, meetup groups focused on fintech, meetup groups focused on tech within minorities (i.e. women who code), meetup groups focused on open source and/or privacy.
- Targeted marketing and PR campaigns will help reinforce awareness within the communities and audiences identified. Collaboration with language-specific highly regarded crypto public figures.
- Localizing content, this can include the official website and some other key content. We will prioritize language according to identified hubs and most spoken languages. For instance German is very high on the list as Berlin and Zug are both German speaking. Other languages include Spanish, French and Russian which are some of the world’s most spoken languages.
Faced with currency devaluation and high inflation rate, Africa has high demand for financial services like loans, savings/investment and international payments. Our priority and initial marketing focus will be research, exploration and education. The targeted markets initially include Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya as they have been identified preliminary as where the crypto users are.
- We can effectively motivate potential users after research identifies where crypto can be used (internet access, mobile) and where partnership makes sense.
- There’s a need for education regarding money via introductory campaigns and similar initiatives to improve financial literacy and overcome barriers regarding financial services.
- Our marketing approach will consider the region’s unique infrastructure and leapfrogging development to employ locally relevant and meaningful communication channels and platforms.
The North Asian region is a diverse market that consists of some of the biggest markets for MakerDAO: China, Korea, and Japan. For our strategy to be effective, each key market’s approach needs to be specific and tailored to that market. The regulatory landscape regarding crypto also varies widely. While each country has a different culture and languages, the unit’s contributors can create synergies by sharing successful initiatives and resources.
- Localize content, including Maker websites, to effectively reach the audience
- Manage local social media channels and chatrooms to help potential users understand
- Boost social media followers such as Twitter and Facebook
- Combine marketing campaigns with easy-step challenges to make learning easy and interesting
- Provide local content via mainstream/social media, blogs, on/off-line events, etc.
Southeast Asia has a very diverse cultural and regulatory landscape. Singapore is a significant crypto hub in Japan, with one of the more lax SEA markets for crypto-specific regulations. The focus on the region will be on Vietnam and the Philippines because they are ranked top 10 in global remittance in fiat remittances.
- Localize content and increase awareness of MakerDAO and Dai
- Utilize ambassador program to build and build and strengthen local communities
The list below contains a list of approaches the unit utilizes depending on the needs for each region.
- Provide clear messaging and communicate effectively with mainstream media
- Create value through PR strategies, including earned media from reputable online news outlets, YouTube channels, and podcasts
- Be the point of contact for the mainstream media
Marketing and Social Media
- Conduct marketing campaigns to raise the awareness of Dai
- Manage the official social media platforms for MakerDAO such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook
- Promote latest partnerships with Growth Unit and other teams
- Coordinate with other core units and the community in promoting Dai
- Strategize our event involvement (virtual & in-person)
- Assess event sponsorship opportunities and commit resources to those aligned with our strategy
- Personal participation at the most relevant events to represent MakerDAO and strengthen our network
- Expand offline presence through local events (directly, via partners, or ambassadors)
- Provide lead generation for Growth or other CUs
- Calibrate our strategy to match the needs, culture, and the stage of Dai awareness in specific regions
- Use the most popular social media and communication channels to establish and grow local communities and run local campaigns
- Translate content (video, text, etc.) about MakerDAO in key markets
- Collaborate with those who share the same vision with MakerDAO, including local institutions, associations, and advocates
- Identify local passionate and talented MakerDAO supporters and onboard them as ambassadors
Market Research and Analysis
- Research and analyze data gathered to gauge the effectiveness of the unit and adjust as needed
- Gather sentiment around Maker and Dai and convey it to the DAO
This unit plans to adopt the Objective-Key-Results (OKRs) approach to achieve its goals. The objectives set for the units will come with a couple of key results that are to be determined as we gain more visibility with the existing data.
In order to ensure our unit’s strategy is aligned with other units, the discussions with other core units on identifying their needs will be important in creating our deliverables. Another factor in determining deliverables is team members. As new members of our units are being added, strategies and deliverables will be an ongoing discussion for the first couple of months. Based on our discussion so far, deliverables include, but not limited to the following:
- Identify and create value proposition for each key market segments
- Research and explore opportunities in developing markets in Africa and LatAM where financial services may be lagging
- Activation of an ambassador program: planning, proof of concept, adjust, implementation
- Quarterly marketing campaigns and ads
Individuals on this team come with extensive experience in marketing, PR, communications, and community building. Some of the team members are part of MakerDAO community who have been advocates and contributors in the past years.
- Their area of expertise includes outreach through events and marketing campaigns.
- They have built communities and localized educational content in key markets. Communicating with potential users in the language they speak underscores the spirit of MakerDAO as an inclusive organization.
- They have effectively shared their knowledge about Maker through various speaking engagements and social media.
- Former Bloomberg journalist with years of experience in PR, content, and marketing in the blockchain space
- Co-Founder of a popular DeFi community called Yasashi DeFi in Japan, and a founding member of Japan DeFi Alliance, an advocacy group
- Built several communities, including women’s community and the working family community at Bloomberg Tokyo, as well as Japan’s DeFi community
- Ran a series of marketing campaigns that boosted the traffic to Maker’s homepage and blog in H2 2020 by more than 80 percent
- Established connections needed to foster collaboration with entities such as BGIN, a blockchain group supported by some regulators, and invited to speak at major government-hosted events such as Finsum
- Regional ambassador for Maker since August 2019
- Top organizer over the life of the MakerDAO community development meetup grant
- Founder of DeFi Africa - a “for-Impact Organization” that promotes the awareness of DeFi-related technologies in Africa
- Gave talks about DeFi and MakerDAO in key blockchain and youth empowerment events in Africa. They include Ghana Blockchain Conference 2019, Ghana Youth Ablaze Conference 2019 & 2020, Cryptofest 2020, BEN Africa Kick-off 2020.
- Organized MakerDAO meetups in more than half a dozen Ghanaian universities, engaged in radio discussions about DAI, published a number of DeFi articles
- Published more than a dozen of DeFi and blockchain articles as a writer at CoinPost, a Japanese media company with the third-largest number of readers worldwide.
- Past work has attracted hundreds of retweets and likes on Twitter.
- Translated Maker’s blog posts since its early rollout in Japan as a freelancer
- Localized content for Maker, including its homepage, whitepaper, and technical documents
- Former reporter, business editor at the Mainichi Daily News, the English language paper published by the Mainichi Shinbun, one of Japan’s leading newspapers
- Contributing editor to major Asian newspapers such as Chosun Ilbo (S. Korea), Mainichi Shinbun (Japan) , Hindu Business Line (India), The ASEAN Post (Malaysia)
- Managed Japan’s syndication business for Bloomberg and then managed the Bloomberg Media Distribution group in APAC
- Produced a supplement in Time Magazine’s Japan edition titled “Spot Japan”
- Works as an advisor for media-related startups