Most of the news about blockchain tech these days refers to Bitcoin and other electronic currencies. If you look deep, you might see that currency and tokens may only serve as the first applications of technology that can dramatically change many industries. You should also remember that a couple of decades ago, most people first associated the internet with email. While email is still important, it’s hardly the only application that runs on the internet.
You can’t define blockchain as the technology that only supports digital money. Instead, you should see it as a tool to process and store information in a secure, fast, and distributed way. Once you expand your definition, it’s easy to find examples of ways that marketers can use blockchain to gather data, protect privacy, and market directly to consumers.
Examples of Marketing Benefits for Blockchain
Consider just a few examples of potential and current blockchain application for marketing.
- Cut the middleman for creative content: Today, creative people might distribute videos, music, and books through such platforms as YouTube, Apple, and Amazon. The creators typically earn a fraction of the sales price for each purchase or view. Blockchain tech likes Steem allows these creatives to get paid directly in digital currency without giving a cut to the distributor. These tokens can get exchanged for other digital or national currencies.
- Protect privacy while browsing or buying online: Consumers love to browse and buy on the internet. At the same time, they are unhappy about the way their browsing and buying habits have been spied upon and sold. The Brave browser promises anonymous internet use, and it even has a digital currency of its own for rewarding content producers or making purchases.
- Increase marketing transparency: One of the main struggles that marketers face is the lack of transparency from ad sellers. Companies want to prosper with data-driven marketing, but they face obstacles in the absence of clarity about where ads get displayed and which consumers react to them. Ad servers could use blockchain technology to keep more data for their customers.
- Extend crowdfunding to big projects: One real estate developer had trouble raising funds from traditional, large investors. They had a somewhat risky plan that would take a long time to complete, so no finance companies wanted to tie up funds for so long. They used a blockchain app that allowed many smaller investors to buy, sell, and trade tokens. The value of these tokens naturally increased as the project progressed, but a token holder was free to buy in or sell out at any time. This project helped the developer to raise the funds they needed.
What is the Next Blockchain Application for Marketing?
Blockchain can do a lot more than only power Bitcoin. Perhaps the best blockchain application for marketing is still in development or hasn’t even been thought of yet. This technology is still new, evolving, and mostly associated with electronic currency.
A shortage of trained developers, not a lack of good ideas, has slowed down development. Some blockchain technologies allow other companies and people to use them for their own white label apps, so they don’t always need to reinvent the wheel. As these begin to mature, expect a lot more reliance upon this distributed technology from marketers and many other industries.