Social media teams take note: Web3 is redefining online communities
If Discord and Reddit aren’t part of your social media strategy already, they should be.
Savannah Peykani, Social Content Specialist
I’m just a few weeks shy of my one-year anniversary at Blokhaus, meaning it’s been almost one year exactly since I left the world of Web2 social media management to join Web3. As an Internet-obsessed professional, part of why I love this space is that I’m always learning something new, and with each client or project, I get to dive deep into a new community. The power of online communities is what drew me to this career in the first place (my college roommate was a girl I met on Tumblr), and reflecting back on my first year working in Web3, I’m struck by how differently communities operate in this space, compared to Web2.
I’d argue that no matter what sector you work in, if you do anything at all related to social media, content creation, or community management, the biggest takeaway from the rise of Web3 and blockchain is the change in how communities operate.
The era of passive, consumption-based social media behavior is over
Web3 communities (across art, gaming, DeFi, and web development) are unique in one major respect: the eagerness with which their members cultivate them. They take their “job” very seriously. Unlike TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube, when you join the Web3 movement, you’re not inundated with sponsored content from your favorite vloggers and influencers. Instead, you’re met with a passionate group of people who dedicate their free time to education, thought-leadership, and genuine assessments of the latest tech and products. I think this follows a general trend that all brands and content specialists need to be aware of: Increasingly, audiences are looking for opportunities to actively engage not just with products and brands, but with each other. The era of passive, consumption-based social media behavior is over.
Discord and Reddit are two great examples of heavy-lift platforms that community members happily contribute content to. These platforms are two of the most popular spaces for Web3 conversations; there are Discord servers and subreddits dedicated to PFP collections, to DAO members, to specific blockchain engineers, and many more. As of July 2022, there were at least 1,000 active crypto-related servers on Discord and to date the r/CryptoCurrency subreddit has 4.3 million members. Clearly, these are the hubs for Web3 and blockchain communities – and thinking about why that is, can tell you a lot about how the communities behave.
Web3 groups are inherently decentralized, thus the ultimate source of power and truth isn’t a corporation: it’s the users that make the spaces worth visiting in the first place
Discord and Reddit are primarily text-based platforms. They’re designed for discussion, and the fostering of deep relationships with like-minded individuals worldwide. It’s networking, it’s education, and yes, it’s even friendship-building. But it’s not one-sided. Companies throughout the Web3 space typically have either dedicated moderators and admins on staff, or they forge close relationships with volunteer mods to ensure that they have grassroots access to what their users/followers are saying, asking, and contributing. Of course, this has positives and negatives – but you don’t get that on Web2 platforms. Web3 groups are inherently decentralized, thus the ultimate source of power and truth isn’t a corporation: it’s the users that make the spaces worth visiting in the first place. The great social media apps in the era of Web3 will prioritize this grassroots, user-focused ethos, one that can’t be infiltrated (or ruined) by corporate interest. Only in Web3 communities can social teams enjoy accessible, transparent communication with their customers.
Any social media team that’s been paying attention can tell you that the way we’ve been doing our jobs for the past 10 years is about to radically shift. That’s due to many factors, but I’d argue the rise of blockchain and the platforms that have grown as a result of it are a huge element that isn’t being acknowledged. In many ways, this shift to more active participation online recalls the earliest days of the Internet, when forums reigned supreme. But now those forum conversations cannot be siloed from brand communications. So if you haven’t already, add “moderator” to your resume and start jumping into some servers. The communities can’t wait to meet you.
Blokhaus is a marketing and communications agency with a focus on Web3 and emerging tech. Since we were founded in 2021, Blokhaus has supported numerous high-profile projects and activations around the globe, working in partnership with some of the biggest brands in the world. To learn more about our work, check out our Case Studies. To get in touch, visit our Contact Us page.