Building community in web3

Building community in web3 games

Photo by Ravi Palwe on Unsplash

I’ve been a community manager for most of my professional career. I’ve spoken to people and managed relationships in the AAA & mobile game space, and outside of that! But nothing’s been quite as challenging as community management in the web3 space.

Here are some pro-tips to help you navigate that and make your life a little easier.

Attention spans are SHORT

A long time ago, a friend wisely told me: on the internet, everyone is a monkey and doesn’t read. That advice still holds true, and in this age of TikTok, is truer than ever. Even I stopped reading tooltips and flavor text in games — I just click on mindlessly like a chimp.

Keeping this advice in mind for web3 will help you navigate priorities when it comes to developing and putting out communications for the crypto-native crowd. The rule of thumb for videos used to be 3 minutes, back when long-form video content was king. With the advent of mobile ads and UA, it became 15–30s. Today, it’s probably all of 3 seconds, so why make a 30 minute video to be posted on the internet for all eternity? Why write a 30 page whitepaper?

Nobody reads, and attention spans are as short as a tub of dipping sauce from [insert fast food outlet of your choice]. Keep your comms concise and everyone, including yourself, will have an easier time digesting the important information you often need to share with the community, which will in turn lead to you having to answer far less questions about basic information.

Human touch is still important

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ChatGPT and AI are making quite the rounds nowadays, but there’s still one thing that the machines can’t provide, and that’s the warmth of human connection. Though your comms may be clipped in the world of web3, it doesn’t mean your care and concern have to be. In fact, that matters more than ever.

I tell a lot of people that web3 community management is a throwback to web 1.0, where forums and personal attention from a gamemaster mattered a lot. That was what helped develop brand loyalty and kept people coming back for more: it was the care they felt from the company that made the game they loved playing.

It felt like a lot of this got lost in web2, particularly as social media made brands more ‘accessible’ to players all across the globe. The irony is that the more accessible social media made a brand, the more it’d have to prioritise who it paid attention to, leading to a lot of lost personal connections.

In web3, where a lot of us are starting at ground zero for brand affinity and community loyalty, caring about the folk in your Discord or in your DMs counts for a lot, and goes further than you think.

So, keep your outward comms short, but continue working on that 2-way engagement, and maybe have a second think about using ChatGPT for replies!

Everyone is part of the community

Photo by Daniel K Cheung on Unsplash

This last tip is some solid advice I got from our mod team when we were first starting out. “Be extra nice to everyone, because you don’t know what communities they’re going back to fud in.” This was in response to me wanting to nip some potential (obviously skem) collabs in the bud at some point. It was a good reminder that in the mostly-anonymous world of web3, people come from everywhere. Someone who’s active in your Discord may well be a part of three other communities that you don’t even know about–everyone, everything, everywhere, is connected.

There’s a lot less overlap in the web2 space, where players have developed specific tastes or affinities for genres or IP. In web3, they still have genre or IP affinity, but you’re starting a little from scratch there, at least for now. More importantly, they’ve also all got one common ground: web3/crypto. It’s kind of like esports, really. We may not all watch the same games, but we all know the same joy (or sorrow) of watching your favorite team play.

So keep the advice above in mind when you’re thinking of curtly shutting down a skem collab. I’m not suggesting you spend a lot of energy on each and every one, but you never know which of them could come back to help you out in the future.

Treat everyone like how you’d treat your biggest whale, and that might just pay back!

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Building community in web3 was originally published in Mighty Bear Games on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.