And That’s a Good Thing
In recent years, the world of Initial Coin Offerings (ICO’s) has exploded and countless projects involving token issuance on the blockchain have raised capital via an ICO. Their initial, incredible successes were unprecedented. Investors looking to make a fast profit became token sale contributors so as to exploit the volatility of these markets and cash in on soaring token values. Then startups began to tokenize products and services that didn’t need blockchain at all to function successfully, just to get a piece of this lucrative pie.
A New Paradigm
However, the markets have started to level out and the unparalleled performance of the first wave of ICO’s is behind us. This doesn’t mean that it’s game over for blockchain –based initiatives. In fact that couldn’t be further from the truth. Blockchain technology is joining the mainstream and is being introduced in a vast array of new verticals, from entertainment, to hospitality, to real estate and more. As a consequence, we are seeing blockchain-based projects gaining in credibility, which is leading to increased stability and greater investment viability.
While those token sale contributors who have been indiscriminately purchasing tokens from the ICO’s with the most recent buzz are undoubtedly disappointed by the drop in returns they are seeing today, this is a positive development. We now have a healthier market, where only those initiatives that are using blockchain technology purposefully, to solve specific problems in their industries and provide value-added products and services, will succeed. This success may be far more gradual, but it is also far more sustainable. It will lead to wider adoption of the technology across all types of industries and also encourage broader investment from individuals, companies and institutions that have previously been reluctant to enter such a volatile space. With this increased usage of blockchain technology, regulation will soon catch up, further enhancing blockchain’s legitimacy and long term profit potential.
Doing It Right
The companies contributing to the widespread adoption of blockchain technology are those that harness its unique benefits to revolutionize all kinds of products and services.
For Liberdy, an Ad-tech startup, blockchain technology is integral to its aim of disrupting the ad industry and creating a more fair and open, decentralized advertising marketplace. Liberdy allows for a direct relationship between advertisers and consumers and enables the consumer to be paid for the use of their data.
The company is using blockchain technology to answer the need for security and transparency in an industry that has lost the public’s trust due to the mishandling and misuse of users’ personal data.
Liberdy is leveraging blockchain’s innate transparency and accountability to answer the consumer’s need for trust. Every transaction is published publicly on the network, enabling the consumer to monitor their smart contract payments for the use of their data and track who is accessing their data at any given time. Use of the blockchain also enables the advertiser to receive data that they can guarantee is verified, up-to-date and authenticated.
In addition, Liberdy’s decentralized P2P network ensures that no single entity can control the flow of data, including Liberdy. Since the data is distributed across the network it is also more secure as consumer data is stored externally and not on Liberdy’s servers. This also means that the data it is not stored in a manner that will enable Liberdy to access and use it to cut the consumer out of the deal.
Without blockchain technology, Liberdy could not offer an alternative to the status quo that finally offers consumers, publishers and advertisers of all sizes an equal stake in the online advertising ecosystem.
What This Means for the Future of Blockchain
It is this kind of innovative use of blockchain that will lead to the eventual mainstreaming of the technology across all industries. Why? Because only value-added solutions will be able to survive and encourage investors to exchange their funds for tokens over the long term, in a sustainable way.
While ICO’s are no longer offering the incredible peaks they used to, with less volatility the market is becoming a more attractive option for more traditionally-minded investors. The cream is rising to the top and the best blockchain-based business are offering exciting new solutions that were not previously possible in all sorts of verticals. Those companies that jumped on the ICO train with nothing to convince consumers to exchange their fiat for tokens are being left behind and blockchain is carving out a legitimate, profitable space in the global markets.