Marketing Update: Week of March 5th - Brand Refresh Update

:loudspeaker: TL;DR : Brand Refresh Workshop Video available, PR Agency confirmed, SEO refresh happening, Twitter efforts increasing, new events added, and NEAR highlighted as a Unicorn in the CV VC Top 50 Report.

Branding Efforts

Major traction was made this week with the Brand Refresh Working Group & the brand agency, MilkInside. We had an extensive workshop sessions that included partners (Mintbase), community members like 4Ants Guild, and internal teams including Marketing, DevRel, Engineering, and the Community team. Looking to share your feedback with us? Reach out to us below or at Open Brand - NEAR Protocol.

:arrow_right: :arrow_right: : You can watch the recordings of the Brand Refresh Workshop HERE. :arrow_left: :arrow_left:

Here’s some highlights from the workshops this week: :point_down:

:100: GOAL OF WORKSHOP - Build on Authenticity, Community and Inspiration.

:face_with_symbols_over_mouth: :heart_eyes: EMPATHY MAP (Pains/Wants of NEAR Personas)

FOUNDERS EMPATHY MAP: :point_down:

DEVELOPER EMPATHY MAP: :point_down:

COMMUNITY EMPATHY MAP: :point_down:

SEGMENT DEEP DIVE (DAY IN LIFE OF REAL PEOPLE IN OUR ECOSYSTEM): :point_down:

SEGMENT JOURNEY INTO NEAR: :point_down:

FOUNDER JOURNEY:

DEVELOPER JOURNEY(S):

COMMUNITY JOURNEY:

Next Steps In Branding Process: :point_down:

  • Discovery Phase

  • Interview community members: ie. ChloeTheDev, Nima, Nate, Davis

  • Output of our Research and Discovery

  • Propose Creative Exploration, Ideation

  • UX Phase

  • Website Experience Design wireframes start

  • Brand development

  • Visual Exploration - first mood board from Agency

PR AGENCY CONFIRMED

:muscle: We’re thrilled to report we have finalized the RFP process and have picked our PR agency – more forthcoming on this next week.

SEO UNDERWAY

:computer: We’re happy to report SEO efforts are underway and we’ve pulled in an expert that works alongside companies like Gartner. The result of this effort will dramatically increase discoverability efforts across search + media channels + should have a lift with the content we share. We’re also focusing on improving our Twitter presence. :eyes:

NEAR PICKED AS TOP 50 UNICORN

:unicorn: We’ve been working on this for a while and we’re thrilled to share that the 6th CV VC Top 50 Report released and features NEAR and our very own Mally Anderson, Head of Developer Content. The report is a must-read, as the valuation of the Crypto Valley Top 50 increased 680% to $254.9B from $37.5B (previous report) and Crypto Valley now counts 11 Unicorns – including NEAR!
:arrow_right: Read it here: http://cvvc.com/top50 :arrow_left:

EVENTS UPDATE

:raised_hands: We have added another event to our summer in addition to Consensus, Web3 Summit, hackathons, and more. We’re joining forces with Mintbase and will be showcasing NEAR and the power of NFTs at the upcoming Wilde Moehre Festival in Germany.

:trophy: Also be sure not to miss the 10 Projects to Try & Invest In! OWC’s II Demo Day – which is fast approaching and unlike other private Demo Days, this one is open to the entire ecosystem. The Community, Investors and Builders are all welcome to join this 3 - Day Event! (4/12-4/14) :arrow_right: RSVP HERE. :arrow_left:

ICYMI - MARKETING DECK FROM MARKETING TOWN HALL

:studio_microphone: Missed the Marketing Overview at the latest Town Hall? :arrow_right: Check out the presentation slides HERE. :arrow_left:

PRODUCT LAUNCHES

:rainbow: We’re heads down preparing for the launch of the Rainbow Bridge on March 15th! :rainbow:

Thanks for your continued support,

The NEAR Foundation Marketing Team

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we community could do some thing for the launch of the Rainbow Bridge on March 15th

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Hi Tinsman, thanks again for sharing the marketing update. I’m really impressed by the transparency this shows and hopefully over time this will help open the door for more contributors and ideas.

Some comments FWIW from a non-technical observer:

  • I suspect both potential tokenholders and potential developers are asking a lot of the same questions. I would frame this as ‘What is NEAR’s pathway to being THE TOP (or at least one of the top) smart contract blockchains?’
  • This is a related but I think different framing from ‘why NEAR?’. It goes more to the anxiety and uncertainty of the investor (either the investor of money, or the investor of development effort) - it’s more like ‘OK, even if NEAR has great tech, how do I know my investing/development effort isn’t going into wither in a ghost city with no liquidity or citizens?’ Analogy would be like, how do you convince someone to set up their shop in the main street of a new city before anyone lives there?

My investment thesis in NEAR (which might not even be factually accurate - disclaimer I am dumb retail) goes something like

  1. NEAR is 100x faster and 10000x cheaper than ETH (‘the world’s cheapest truly decentralised blockchain’?)
  2. NEAR has the lowest barriers to entry for users and new developers
  3. EVM + Bridge will guarantee liquidity and make NEAR backwards-compatible for any Ethereum Dapp
  4. NEAR can be the scaling solution of choice for ETH dapps
  5. New apps could be native to developer friendly NEAR and then port stuff to eth when they need liquidity.
  6. Native liquidity and community on NEAR will grow comparable to top-tier blockchains. Buying NEAR now, or building on NEAR now, means you can be part of the journey of the best next-generation blockchain there is.

If my understanding is right (and welcome to have it falsified by people who actually know stuff), I feel this is a pretty compelling pitch for investors and developers alike. But what would I ‘need to believe’ to act on it?

  1. I would have to believe NEAR was compelling in speed and scalability not just compared to ETH (that’s like flipping burgers for next-gen blockchains at the moment) but to other next-gen Layer 1s and other scaling solutions
  2. I would have to believe that the onboarding experience for NEAR really was smoother than alternatives
  3. I would have to believe NEAR’s EVM+Bridge work had advantages over others

What would the evidence be that convinces me of these things? How can it be communicated in a way that grabs attention (infographics?) I feel the narrative around ‘why NEAR’ for investors and developers alike could be strengthened with more discussion/benchmarking of NEAR’s strengths compared to the other next-gen Layer 1s like Cardano, AVAX, Tezos (i.e. not just Ethereum).

The ‘Explorers’ we’re pitching for are restless by nature, and always wondering whether greener grass could be found somewhere else. How do we stand out and attract those trailblazers against the rest of this landscape?

I think it comes from pitching not just a clear value proposition, but a strong narrative around NEAR’s pathway to mass adoption.

Thanks again for posting and sharing the update.

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marketing is one thing, there must be something big on NEAR Protocol ,if not DeFi,els NFT ,it should be a big thing ,which mentioned in"near-token-supply-and-distribution/

One of these unannounced programs contains 30M tokens on a 6-month linear lockup. The largest portion in this category is a provision for a currently-unannounced distribution effort which could involve up to 80M unlocked tokens. For details, please wait for the announcement of this program."

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Great thoughtful feedback. :raised_hands: This is the kind of response I always hope to get when I put a brand update post in the forum. I’ve shared this feedback with the Brand Working Group so we can go a bit deeper on this in our next session.

We’ll come back to you with some feedback on this shortly after we discuss.

@jake @nf_erik @illia Thought this was helpful feedback worth flagging and making sure we discuss this in future working groups with strategy & brand.

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Good point.

Side note to your call out about DeFi and NFTs: I do see a lot of opportunity with DeFI (ex. micro lending) and NFT’s are super interesting to me because anything in the future that can be tokenized, will be. For example, I can see NFTs representing specific real estate, brand/IP/media/tech licensing rights, commercial equipment leases, data usage rights. I think a lot about what that could look like for NEAR to elevate discussions around NFTs beyond art and collectibles.

Thanks for the feedback.

Yes please. We’ll make a post early next week sharing the approach around Rainbow Bridge. We’d love to have as much community participation as possible.

Is the launch of Rainbow Bridge today? This is a major event. Have some publicity activities been arranged?

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Hey Victor - there was a planned slow roll out. You’ll see more pick up soon on this. For now, check out the release here.