Now that the cryptocurrency business is maturing, competitors between cryptocurrency exchanges and different kinds of digital asset service suppliers (VASPs) is stiffer than it has ever been. Various exchanges have even been pressured to shutter their doorways on account of low buying and selling quantity.
Due to this fact, constructing a stable technique for onboarding and retaining customers is significant–whereas Bitcoin should still often growth, the hype that introduced a whole lot of 1000’s of latest customers clambering into the house in late 2017 is unlikely to ever return.
Just lately, Finance Magnates spoke to Kris Marszalek, CEO of the Hong Kong-based VASP ecosystem Crypto.com. The ecosystem contains an trade app, an MCO Visa Card, and the Crypto.com Chain, a local blockchain that powers Crypto.com Pay. Crypto.com additionally not too long ago launched Pay Your Pals, a crypto-based social funds app much like Venmo.
We requested Marszalek how Crypto.com is working to create model loyalty, how volatility impacts buying and selling habits, and what actually issues on the subject of consumer metrics.
Constructing a ‘sticky’ product
In the case of constructing a product or platform that customers might be loyal to, “there are at all times two issues to consider right here,” Marszalek mentioned. “One is the consumer expertise and the way you design it–it must be actually easy and easy. The second is the monetary incentives.”
“We apply the identical pondering to most of our merchandise,” he continued, pointing to Pay Your Pals, an app constructed by Crypto.com that operates equally to social funds app Venmo, however with cryptocurrency. “You’re going to get [up to 10 percent] cashback each time you pay somebody again.” Customers additionally get $50 rewards for signing up new pals to the platform.
“So there are some actual monetary incentives right here,” Marszalek mentioned.
Basically, the secret’s to construct a product and a model that customers really feel emotionally linked to. If that is finished efficiently, “[users] change into advocates for our model they usually onboard their pals, and we simply attempt our greatest to proceed to enhance the merchandise and provides them extra performance with out extra complexity,” he defined, “so that they increasingly causes to make use of [them] each day.”
“I believe this method–to simply very virtually enhance your product–works extraordinarily nicely on this house.”
Marszalek added that knowledge performs an vital position on this technique of sensible enchancment. “Proper now, as an organization, we’ve obtained nearly 200 individuals, and we’ve arrange our whole group to actually use the info that we save from the customers in our platform, after which roll out new concepts for product enchancment in a short time.”
“What you find yourself having if in case you have one of these method, the place you have a look at consumer expertise, design, and incentives–you get a really ‘sticky’ product [that encourages] individuals to remain in your ecosystem. They don’t churn as a lot as they might in any other case.”
“The imaginative and prescient is that you just get to work on one thing that has the potential to influence the world and make it slightly bit higher. However to be able to make it occur, it’s worthwhile to maintain all these nitty-gritty particulars…it’s not very glamorous, however it makes your product higher each single day.”
“Typically, your complete house is responsible of not investing in consumer expertise,” he mentioned. “That’s what it comes right down to.”
What actually issues on the subject of consumer metrics?
So, how efficient has this sort of onboarding technique been for Crypto.com? “We simply hit a milestone of 1 million customers on the platform in September,” Marszalek mentioned, three years after the corporate was based in 2016. Whereas 1,000,000 is nothing to smell at, it’s not a lot when in comparison with an app like Coinbase, which has 5.6 million customers.
However Marszalek is undaunted: “these are complicated merchandise that we’re constructing,” he mentioned, pointing to the Crypto.com app that was launched in Could 2018. “We’re very pleased..with the stickiness of the product.”
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Certainly, Marszalek believes that this ‘stickiness’ issue is usually missed on the subject of the ways in which firms measure their success: “individuals are inclined to focus an excessive amount of on ‘self-importance metrics’ and never sufficient on what actually issues. The stickiness of the product determines whether or not you’re going to be right here in 5 years or not,” he mentioned.
— Kris | Crypto.com (@Kris_HK) September 19, 2019
“Individuals are inclined to throw out the most important quantity that they’ll discover–it could be that you’ve got 5 million registered customers, however a few of them might have [signed on] in 2013 and already forgot about your model three years in the past.”
Marszalek says that if you happen to actually need to know the way customers are feeling about your platform, there’s a easy query you’ll be able to ask them: “you’ll be able to ask your prospects ‘how would you’re feeling if, beginning tomorrow, you couldn’t use this product anymore?’ If [over forty percent] tells you that they might be extraordinarily disenchanted, you’re onto one thing.”
“[Volatility is] excessive proper now as a result of this market continues to be very small–the liquidity is low, even for Bitcoin itself.”
“The place the market is immediately is that extra volatility equals extra exercise on the platform,” he mentioned, “as a result of for the overwhelming majority of customers immediately, it is a new funding class that they spend money on to get a return. So, it’s fairly counterintuitive–however for instance, BTC dropped 20 p.c final week. However for us as a platform on that day, we noticed way more exercise than on an everyday day the place the worth goes up by two p.c or one thing–that’s the way it works.”
“We see patterns in habits–like if [Bitcoin] drops, some individuals promote extra, some individuals purchase extra, and when it goes up, then some individuals convert it to fiat and spend it on their card.”
“I believe that the volatility[inherent to cryptocurrency markets] is a function. It’s not a bug,” Marszalek mentioned. “It’s excessive proper now as a result of this market continues to be very small–the liquidity is low, even for Bitcoin itself. You’ll be able to transfer a whole market with $100 million.”
On the identical time, nevertheless, “it has [been] confirmed time and time once more that crypto can’t be killed. It is going to survive–it doesn’t matter what form of dropoffs we can have and whatnot, it is going to at all times bounce again. After Mt Gox collapsed in 2014, there was doom and gloom and [questions of] if cryptocurrency goes to outlive. However after 2017, at the start of 2018 when costs began to drop, no one ever questions that crypto goes to outlive. It’s a totally completely different story.”
“It’s essential that individuals perceive that that is simply the section we’re in. Because the market matures and the infrastructure is constructed by firms like us and plenty of others, and there are individuals fixing issues in digital asset custody, and different individuals onboarding giant monetary establishments that may carry in additional liquidity.
Moreover, there are “giant buyer manufacturers like Samsung deploying wallets,” Marszalek mentioned, including that Apple is more likely to comply with someday inside the subsequent two years.
Additionally, “barely controversial, however good for the market normally–Fb’s announcement about their cryptocurrency.”
“All this stuff will enhance liquidity out there, and with elevated liquidity, volatility goes to cut back,” he mentioned. “Within the meantime, you’ve obtained the answer of stablecoins…so if somebody doesn’t need the volatility, they don’t want it. They’ll simply transfer to one thing steady.”
This was an excerpt. To listen to the remainder of Finance Magnates’ fascinating interview with Kris Marszalek, go to us on Soundcloud or Youtube.