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How to launch an ICO?

The total cost of the ICO campaign can amount to half a million or a million dollars if consulting services are used. This amount will be required in order to prepare the ICO. So what will you get in the end?

If you can put together a good team to implement the project, technical and legal issues can be handled by experienced professionals in these fields.

Coming up with the idea

A well-known BitcoinTalk forum has a section on “Alternative currencies” where you can go through the users’ feedback. Investments in the cryptocurrency require tokens so if your project is not aimed at using them, you should look for investors elsewhere. For example, you want to open a pizzeria. Does the use of tokens make sense? Of course not.

Gathering a team

A team can have five experienced participants but a large ICO can hardly be effectively handled by such a small number of people. A great team should have experts in every field, from an editor to a designer so that everyone is in charge of what they know best.

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Ideally, the team will be quite large so the work of each of its members must be paid for. The following options are possible: paying with your own or borrowed money; non-material motivation with an average salary, then, after the ICO ends, rewarding with a certain percentage of raised funds.

Sometimes pre-ICOs are run to cover the initial costs.

Studying the competition

It is important to be able to learn from other companies’ mistakes. To do so, you should study the startups that have run their ICOs recently. It is a good thing if they are somehow similar to your startup. Successful ICOs are projects such as Golos and Ethereum.

Registration

If the company is not registered abroad, do it. Cyprus, Switzerland and Belize are considered to be good options.

A white paper

This is the main document of the ICO campaign. It will not be difficult to put it together with a good team. A white paper is an important document for large investors. They pay particular attention to it and can give bad PR which will harm your project.

If you plan to make a document on your own, its better to send it to an expert to proofread it. It will cost you about $500. However, such costs will pay for themselves completely as you will save your project from a bad reputation and get rid of the errors in the white paper.

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This document has many sections including the product experience and, particularly, its applicability to blockchain. Also, detailed analysis of the market and competition is important as are the conclusions and answers to the most important questions.

Website launch

The most popular option for a website is a single-page website. Reliable hosting is important, especially if you are planning a large advertising campaign. In addition, your site can get a huge number of users at the beginning so you need it to work quickly and seamlessly.

The website should host the following information: review of the project and its main product, white paper and the basic rules, team members, cooperation, cases studies, roadmap, social media and forums links.

Basic terms

Figure out the key points of the ICO right at the start: the beginning and end of the fundraising; the basis of tokens; the roadmap; the type of cryptocurrency that will be accepted; the number of tokens available; guarantees; evaluation of the code by independent experts; distribution of tokens in the process of project implementation.

Early investors will receive:

  • an agreement with the stock exchanges that the relevant tokens are added;
  • bonuses and bounty-programs;
  • an opportunity for foreigners to invest;
  • motivation for investors: an opportunity to take part in project management, buy back, duration of investment;
  • social media presence (Facebook, Telegram, Twitter, etc.);
  • the source code of the product on GitHub.

It is also important to create project discussions on forums. Some of them are used to keep the audience posted on the progress while others provide critical feedback and questions from users which you should answer to. In this case, the probability of fraudulent spam posts cannot be ruled out which is why you need to track the forums. It is better if the moderation is round-theclock, particularly at the ICO stage. It is necessary for the information to appear regularly as investors can take the absence of news from the company as a signal for sale.

Apart from the tax and legal problems, you can also be accused of spam. Be responsible for the reputation of your project and improve it so that you are not suspected of dishonest practices.

Bounty program

This is a reward for users who initiate the promotion and improvement of the project’s idea. These users follow the channels and discuss the project on the forums and social media. Terms of the bounty program are usually published on popular forums. It is a good idea to create a separate topic with an appropriate title.

Tracker placement

ICO trackers study your project to check its reliability and publish it to their websites. Some of them require a certain fee for the publication. The most popular trackers are Icotracker.net, Cointelegraph.com, The-blockchain.com, Icoalert.com, etc. This list is quite large because new ICO trackers are launched each month.

Media

Keeping in touch with the major media is very helpful. You can prepare the materials you need and publish them on the chosen resources.

Marketing campaign

Use all the traffic sources to attract the right audience and ensure the token sale in the first minutes. Each visitor is the potential investor in your project. What can improve the feedback of users regarding your ICO? Limit the amount of funds that you are going to raise. This is a good indicator for investors.

Offer discounts and nice bonuses to early investors. All information on your site and other venues should suggest high demand for your project.

Investor’s account

It is used to control the settings, translate your tokens and receive cryptocurrency. In addition, you can also use a timer and upload the necessary documentation.

Languages

For better user experience, it is recommended to offer the site in several languages: not only in Russian and English but also in German or Chinese if it will be helpful for the project. As for the white paper, it is not necessary to translate it since it is a very voluminous work.

Token emission

Token emission should be handled by experts via Ethereum which is the most popular platform for these purposes.

Launch of the

ICO While preparing and running the ICO, the team should be alert because there is a great risk that the wallet can be hacked or replaced by scammers at any time. This has often happened before, a striking example being CoinDash. The wallet address which was used to transfer the funds was hacked and the owners of the site failed to prevent the attack. Scammers stole $7.5 million.

Summary

The costs of the ICO campaigns are constantly growing as more and more projects use this option to raise investments. Today, it is not an easy task to raise big money for medium-sized investors given that the exchange rate is unstable and huge revenue growth is a rare success. It is possible that the entry into this market will soon require even more than a million dollars, if a truly worthwhile ICO is to be launched.