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Unconventional ways to grow and own your audience
This is what has kept my growth despite Twitter changes and the 'bear market'
Welcome to the 81 new members who have joined us since the last week!
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The NFT art space has suffered tremendously from X (formerly Twitter 😉) link-blocking updates.
The updates - designed to keep people on X - were implemented almost in sync with the so-called NFT bear market.
The fact that most blockchain artists, marketplaces, and products rely almost entirely on X for marketing (mint links, announcements, discovery) has made things much worse, as creators are left frustrated, wondering if their work is terrible or if anyone cares.
You aren’t alone; this has affected everyone, from small creators to massive marketplaces.
Here is a look at my traffic originating from X since I started my newsletter.
Ouch, that doesn't look promising…
The good news is I’ve maintained the newsletter growth despite this drastic drop, the dry market conditions, and seemingly less interest in the space.
My newsletter issues are read by 100% more people than one year ago. This data keeps me motivated as it shows artists and collectors are still here, but we must find better ways to connect.
4 Unconventional Ways to Grow and Own Your Audience
These are unconventional ways I’ve used to grow my audience and find people that genuily care about what I am doing — despite market conditions and the mysterious algorithms that govern us.
1. Start a Newsletter
I couldn’t recommend this enough. Owning your audience email list is the best way to overcome dependency and ensure your creations reach those who care.
A newsletter won’t boost your growth, but you will own your audience, something nobody can’t take away (except your subscribers, as they can unsubscribe anytime). Think of your newsletter as your audience companion and an efficient way to share timely updates or releases.
How to do it:
Sign up for a free newsletter platform. I recommend Substack or Paragraph. Paragraph is an excellent alternative for blockchain creators as it lets your audience subscribe by email or crypto wallets. You could embed NFTs into your emails, airdrop your newsletter to wallets, and manage your collectors onchain.
Include your newsletter sign-up form in your social accounts, linktree, website, and email footer.
Write a short weekly or bi-weekly summary of what you are working on. An overview of your social posts works —think 2 to 4 min reads, not whitepapers.
Besides updates, you can send direct links to your newest art or creations. Mind your audience and your drop cadence (!); nobody wants to get sales spam every day.
2. Join a Decentralized Social Network
There are plenty of decentralized social networks or alternatives to X. I’ve explored almost all! Mastodon, Threads, Lens, Farcaster… So far, I’ve been enjoying Farcaster the most.
Decentralized social networks merit an entire article, but in short, they let you own your assets via the blockchain and avoid being hurt by the network making arbitrary decisions.
On Farcaster, there is a yearly protocol fee of $7 to $12, which keeps spammers and bots away. Quality content and conversations from blockchain and crypto enthusiasts occur every day. This network grows quickly, onboarding over 1,000 weekly users, including popular names like Vitalik Buterin and Brian Armstrong.
Your profile, content, followers, and NFTs are tied to your wallet and can be ported to different Farcaster apps.
NFT collections are automatically shown, and actions such as the latest mints and protocol rewards are integrated (or will be) into all the interactions.
I now have over 2,000 new followers (high quality) that I wouldn’t have found elsewhere.
How to do it:
Open a Farcaster account, download the Warpcaster mobile app, and pay the protocol.
Fill out your profile, and include a link to your site or newsletter.
There are specific groups for art, gen artists, musicians, podcasters, writers, etc. Find your tribe and start engaging with other creators and sharing your work. Remember to share high-quality and thoughtful content.
Join ±10,000 art fans that get my newsletter and podcast in their inbox 👇
3. Start a YouTube Channel
Overlooked in our space, YouTube’s potential is undeniable as it is the second most used search engine in the world, after Google. I’ve been uploading podcast episodes on my channel since a month ago, and although the beginning can be slow, most of the traffic is from a new audience that isn’t familiar with my content. It has been a great way to reach new readers and listeners.
You can create long-form videos, medium-form (1 minute to 15 minutes), and shorts (below 1 minute).
Shorts hold particular value for artists and creators for their practicality and reach potential. This has worked for many creators over Instagram reels, and it works on YouTube, too.
How to do it:
Create a YouTube channel, and fill in all your details (website, social networks, your site, and collections).
Share your videos; you can start with shorts and see what works. Include links to your creation, newsletter, website, and social accounts in the video descriptions.
YouTube’s algorithm tries to find people interested in your content, so use related keywords in the title or description. Compared to other social networks, YouTube constantly shares old videos, so once on your channel, it will continue to get views over time.
From there, it is about finding ways to optimize your videos; this isn’t easy and requires a lot of research, but if you enjoy this form, it can surpass your other channels.
Tip: Repurpose your videos for social networks like Instagram, Twitter, etc.
4. Get on Reddit
Reddit is one of the most used platforms on the web. They have incorporated NFT features via their avatars, which hints they take NFTs seriously. It is built on subreddits (or subcommunities), and the trick is to find the right communities that align with your creations.
I’ve also seen visual artists and creators go viral on Reddit.
The most important thing on Reddit is to authentically interact with others and not be too pushy. Reddit isn’t a marketplace or a billboard app.
How to do it:
Create your account and fill your profile with a link to your newsletter, social platforms, YouTube, website, and creations.
Join subreddits related to your work. Here are some of my favorites for digital artists:
Share your creations, stories, and tools in the right subreddit —no links, no promotion! Seek authentic conversations, be curious, and engage with interesting creators.
While doing it, your ‘karma’ points will increase (your reputation), and people will get curious. Eventually, your socials, websites, and newsletter will get new traffic that converts to your inner audience and supporters.
Given how aggressively X has cut link sharing over the past year, it is mandatory for artists, projects, and companies that rely solely on this social network to find alternatives.
Each platform is different and has its pros and cons. It takes time to learn them well, but exploring options with an open mind is worth it, especially during these uncertain times. I wouldn’t recommend trying multiple platforms at once; instead, start a newsletter (Paragraph for blockchain integrations or Substack) and choose an additional platform like Farcaster, YouTube, or Reddit.
Slowly include it in your routine, enjoy the process, and grow and take ownership of your audience.
If you have any questions or unconventional ways to grow and own your audience, I would love to hear about it.
🎙Kaloh’s Podcast: Anika Meier
Last week, I chatted with writer, curator, and gallerist Anika Meier.
She shared her journey in the digital art space and the story behind collaborations with Marina Abramović, Herbert W. Franke, and Lee Mullican.
Until next time,