3 Lessons Web3 Founders Can Learn from ChatGPT’s Success

First impressions are essential for a startup trying to be taken seriously by top VCs and to catch the attention of new users.

But what if your project, or your entire industry, gets off on the wrong foot? Many Web3 projects introduced themselves to the world during the metaverse boom a year and a half ago after Facebook rebranded as Meta Platforms. Instead of seizing the momentum to drive blockchain application development forward, too many of them have fallen into the trap of hype.

The crypto industry is littered with projects, protocols, and companies that have made crucial mistakes, leaving a bad taste in the mouths of industry players and causing the market as a whole to stagnate.

Bonnie Cheung is Chief Strategy Officer at Sending Labs.

Now, the founders have a unique opportunity to learn from ChatGPT, the artificial intelligence platform developed by OpenAI, and the amazing success it has had in changing the AI ​​development paradigm. While Web3 and AI face similar issues in the public eye – part of a general “techlash” against seemingly reckless innovation and outrageous spending – crypto can take ChatGPT’s approach by development and branding to increase adoption.

Divergent paths

Web3’s biggest hurdle today is that its grand vision of unmediated computing and finance has outgrown practical, user-focused development. It’s more than a lack of enthusiasm for the technology behind it.

Many crypto founders and developers have a “north star,” but that often doesn’t stop them from getting caught up in the hype of a bull market or trend and forgetting the most essential part of it. building a product – making something that people will like or want to use.

See also: Crypto Long & Short: Finding Alpha in AI-Related Crypto

Looking at the history of adoption tidal waves, massive growth only really happens when elements of interoperability and user experience (UX) come together. Tangibility, how the technology feels to potential users, is crucial when it comes to virtually all new technological developments, especially regarding abstract concepts like AI or Web3.

Consumers have been using AI for years through Google searches or Netflix suggestions, often unknowingly. But they only started caring about machine learning after ChatGPT caught the eye by clearly showing how awesome generative AI can be.

On the other hand, Web3 remains nebulous. A majority of people can’t see or use most of its apps, leaving projects struggling to justify why anyone should care.

Here are three ways Web3 can adapt to a rapidly changing environment as GPT-4 comes online.

1. Build a product within the industry instead of from scratch

Yes, it is important to have a global vision of what Web3 can be, but not all companies can carry the weight of an entire industry on their backs. Solidifying a niche, or “flagship,” that contributes significantly to the entire ecosystem when developers realize what they set out to build can set a pattern for others.

In the last blockchain boom, too many projects sought to build all-inclusive ecosystems that would essentially replace mainstream banks or blockchains. Of course, the idea that a single company can disrupt and replace an industry shaped by centuries of experience and growth is absurd. The Web3 does not escape economic reality.

To succeed in Web3, like virtually every other industry, founders must start with a gap that they can realistically close. The impetus to start Sending Labs, for example, came from our founding team who noticed that Web3 had virtually no consistent communication infrastructure, especially at the group level.

This created something of a catalyst to start building a product that actually worked to address this glaring problem in the broader context of Web3. Of course, we could have aimed to develop an entire ecosystem from scratch. But if the fundamentals are already there in a technology like blockchain wallets, enhancing a foundation that people are already using is a much more feasible way to achieve our own goals as a business and ultimately account, to advance Web3 as an industry.

2. Don’t make your industry your selling point

If you’re making blockchain the main draw of your product, you’ve already shot yourself in the foot. Just like you don’t see the gears turning behind ChatGPT, users don’t even need to know they’re using the blockchain. That’s not to say that a product’s underlying technology should be a secret or a black box, but outsiders shouldn’t need to have encyclopedic knowledge of blockchain processes to profit from a product.

Using your industry as a selling point can also alienate outsiders who don’t necessarily understand the technology behind your project. If you are leveraging blockchain to provide users with practical utility, they should be able to feel those benefits in using the product rather than reading about how revolutionary blockchain is in your whitepaper.

The fact that the product is self-contained while giving users the ability to learn more if they wish can make their connection to technology more substantial. Again, OpenAI doesn’t require you to know how its AI model actually works to use ChatGPT to describe your essay or come up with a catchy tagline.

3. Not all Web3 products need to target crypto strangers

Most consumer-focused blockchain projects dream of being the ones to crack the code for mainstream adoption. But it’s essential to provide something useful and new to communities that are somewhat familiar or completely engrossed in blockchain before moving on to the mainstream.

When a crypto project promises alternative “privacy-preserving” Internet services to the general public, it is clearly targeting the wrong audience. People who have never bought bitcoin will not care, that is, if they hear about it. It’s a sure way to keep projects permanently locked at square one.

On the contrary, to develop Web3, innovative founders must meet the needs of consumers who already use Web3 products at some level. If your product is truly effective and provides utility to audiences who have seen it all in crypto and blockchain, they will be able to attest to that.

This type of expert-level word-of-mouth adoption happens in any emerging industry or new technology. Think about it: if you’re considering downloading a new investment app, you’ll probably ask a friend who is knowledgeable about investing and finance and has seen a million different similar programs to say if it’s a worthwhile addition. . The same principle applies to attract industry outsiders to Web3.

The unstoppable momentum of technology can be held back by humans

Designing Web3 as a complete ecosystem presents a unique challenge for startups in terms of building products that address all of Web3. Building the train while laying the tracks is hard enough.

Imagine building the train and helping lay the track at the same time. It requires tremendous laser discipline and focus. This type of development model is not sustainable because projects run out of resources or burn themselves out trying to solve every sector-specific problem instead of trying to solve a specific problem.

OpenAI didn’t create ChatGPT to fix the world or get everyone to understand neural networks. It all started with a single prompt where no one needed instructions to start using it, so audiences could find out for themselves how this simple prompt can improve their lives. Web3’s ChatGPT time will come when we can do the same for Web3 users.

See also: The truth about artificial intelligence and creativity

Social media has the potential to drive widespread adoption of Web3, and the building blocks are already in place. Decentralization can serve as the backbone of sub-sectors, such as direct messaging, group communications, and the business value of blockchain can all build on in an accessible way.

Building a complete ecosystem and infrastructure from scratch is particularly daunting and difficult for Web3 startups. It is not enough to have the conviction to build a technologically cool product. If ChatGPT has taught us anything, it’s the need to always remember that adoption happens when users find your product fun and enjoyable to use.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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