We have all heard it, “Bitcoin,” the first cryptocurrency created in late 2008, early 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto. Many of us are still on the periphery and don’t understand Bitcoin or cryptocurrency. As marketers and direct response professionals, we try to stay on top of the latest trends and disruptive technology. Cryptocurrency is one of those disruptive technologies that cannot be ignored in any industry. For many, the term, “cryptocurrency,” itself is scary and somewhat esoteric.
As humans, we tend to dismiss things we don’t understand. But, as marketing professionals, we need to understand that cryptocurrency is changing not only currency itself, but also the entire customer experience. As each day passes, more and more of our customers are using cryptocurrency as a form of payment for goods and services. However, depending on what source you look at (and there aren’t many), less than 1 percent of the world’s population is using cryptocurrency. So, why should you care?
As direct response and digital marketers, cryptocurrency gives you and your customers options and solutions to problems that were not solvable as little as a couple years ago. Here are a few reasons why you need to start offering cryptocurrency as a payment option for your business and your customers:
1. We now accept Bitcoin!
The term, Bitcoin, is definitely a buzzword that people are talking about. In the United States, many surveys show that most of the population has heard of Bitcoin. Bitcoin itself isn’t owned by anyone. There is no Bitcoin office or corporation. Based on the concepts of decentralization and democratization, the term can be used by anyone. Take advantage of this by letting your customers know that you accept Bitcoin as a form of payment. Send out an email, use a pop-up on your website or integrate it into your shopping cart. Companies such as BitPay and Coinbase offer merchant solutions that plug right into your normal checkout process that gives your customers solutions. You can convert to fiat currency instantly when you get paid, or keep the payment in the currency your customer paid in.
2. Your bottom line.
The old school traditional credit card processing and banking industries are frantically trying to come up with solutions for merchants in the cryptocurrency space. Many of the current solutions that are offered by cutting-edge companies, in order to accept cryptocurrencies, cost significantly less than traditional methods of processing a payment. Some options have ZERO fees and ZERO chargebacks. Companies like BitPay charge a flat fee of 1 percent, whereas many traditional merchant processors charge between 2 and 5 percent. With zero chargebacks, you can have an open and honest dialogue with your customers and improve upon the overall experience by having a more symbiotic and intimate relationship with your customer.
3. It’s the future.
There is a lot of talk worldwide about cryptocurrency and Bitcoin with respect to its volatility, utility as a store of wealth and form of payment. Naysayers will tell you that Bitcoin is a bubble, or many of the cryptocurrencies are a bubble. They may very well be correct. As I type, there has been a big market correction in Bitcoin, with a 50 percent drop since December 2017. The price of Bitcoin, or other cryptocurrencies, is not relevant for this discussion. Your price is your price for your product, and you will be paid that in either fiat currency or cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrencies are not going away, as they are becoming more and more accessible, accepted and even more secure than traditional payments. With companies such as Expedia, Microsoft, Overstock, NewEgg and many others accepting cryptocurrency, rest assured…it is here to stay.
There is a lot to learn about this world, and I have openly told people I am far from an expert in cryptocurrency. However, I have been studying it like I studied for the bar exam. This technological advancement is worldwide and evolving every second of every day. There are debit cards, like Shift, which are tied directly to a customer’s cryptocurrency wallet, and merchants don’t know the difference. Companies are allowing merchants to take several different types of cryptocurrencies and instantly convert them into the currency you want to be paid in. Cutting-edge companies, like Request Network, that act like a hybrid between PayPal and a payment processor are giving customers more control and visibility into the process. If you haven’t looked at cryptocurrency as a part of your business and marketing, it’s time.
Michael Alden is an engaging public speaker, bestselling author and the founder and CEO of Blue Vase Marketing, LLC, a multimillion-dollar full-service direct response marketing agency. Alden is the author of the bestselling books, Blueprint to Business, 5% More and Ask More, Get More — all of which have been listed at the top of Amazon and placed on the Wall Street Journal and USA Today’s bestselling lists. Most recently, Alden has become an advocate for the world of Cryptocurrency. He truly believes it to be the wave of the future by writing his latest book, Crushing Crypto: How Anyone Can Build a Fortune in Cryptocurrency.