How to Leverage Social Media Data in Crypto

This episode welcomes a dear friend and mentor of mine Joe Vezzani. He’s the CEO and Co-founder of LunarCrush, a social media analytics platform empowering traders with top-tier insights.
This episode welcomes a dear friend and mentor of mine Joe Vezzani. He’s the CEO and Co-founder of LunarCrush, a social media analytics platform empowering traders with top-tier insights.

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Background

Mint Season 6 episode 17 welcomes a dear friend and mentor Joe Vezzani. He’s the CEO and Co-founder of LunarCrush, a social media analytics platform empowering traders with top-tier insights and sentiment on your favorite crypto projects.

In this episode, we discuss key strategies for navigating through a bear market, the evolution of the web3 social landscape, on-chain data vs. off-chain data, how traders and creators can best leverage data, common pitfalls analytics fall trap too, and what Joe is focused on in the bear market, and so much more.

I hope you guys enjoy our conversation.

Time Stamps

  • 02:08 – Intro
  • 06:09 – Ideas Before LunarCrush
  • 08:24 – NFT Social Analytics
  • 13:57 – Key Strategies for Navigating Through a Bear Market
  • 17:30 – Evolution of the Web3 Social Landscape
  • 24:36 – Owning Your Data
  • 27:07 – On-Chain Data Versus Off-chain Data
  • 31:22 – How Traders and Creators Leverage Data
  • 34:31 – Common Mistakes People Make When Using Data While Decision-Making
  • 40:07 – Things Joe is Excited About During This Bear Market
  • 47:10 – Outro

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Joe Vezzani, welcome to mint.

Joe Vezzani: What’s up?

What’s up? I’m gonna have a hard time doing this interview. I feel like I’m gonna break character too much. 

Joe Vezzani: How many episodes have you done of this?

I think we’re approaching 160

Joe Vezzani: 160 episodes and out of those 160 episodes, who do you think was the best interview? So, meaning like, they’re the best, everyone else slightly worse, or you probably don’t care about those people. So, like, who was the number one?

Should I call out the bad people? Is that what you want me to do?

Joe Vezzani: No, I’m not saying that. But if that’s what you’re saying.

You know what, I think this is going to be the best interview. Okay, I’m convinced, people that I really enjoyed conversations with. So early in the season, I had these two guys on, they barely spoke English, so, it was hard but their story was the most fascinating. They were the cyborgs that sort of experiment with their bodies. And they have like, one has an antenna that’s like surgically implanted into his head. And he sells NFTs that give people access to the camera of his antenna, so that they can manipulate his color vision at all times. And then his buddy has like a pacemaker. And he sold an NFT that gives people access to manipulate his heart rate at any given time. So that was probably like the most fascinating guests I’ve had on. Nobody has topped that.

Joe Vezzani: Is it like a standard deviation of like how high the heart rate could go. I mean, you can.

You can kill the guy. No, I don’t know. But he had no limitation.

Joe Vezzani: If he could, he’s like, fuck it.

He’s like, fuck it, just like hit me at 180, welcome to the podcast, a part of season six. This feels a little formal, yet informal. You’re an OG in my podcasting days from Draper going home, doing blockchain and booze together. And now here we are, how are you doing?

Joe Vezzani: I’m good, man. Thank you for having me. I appreciate it. I mean, it’s, you know, I couldn’t be like 160 episodes, and now I’m on.

Now you’re on, I know.

Joe Vezzani: You have to go through 160 people.

Intro

Let’s not go there. Let’s just get into it. I love starting with a quick intro. Okay. For those who aren’t familiar with you, Joe, and your epicness, and all the cool things you’re doing with LunarCrush, give us a quick background.

Joe Vezzani: So, I’m CEO co-Founder of LunarCrush, LunarCrush is a social intelligence tool. So, what we do is we aggregate all of the world’s social media data, that’s crypto NFT, and stock specific now. And we aggregate that over time, so that people understand what do the communities look like, across each of these projects, or companies or communities or, you know, Daos, whatever it may be, we try and help people and protect investors by giving them a little bit more intelligence and a little bit more research in a world where, you know, sentiment and social has such a great impact on what’s going on in the markets. We help people kind of dive deep into that. And so, you know, started it back in back in 2017, 2018, co-founders, John, and Dan. And yeah, man just been cranking ever since.

So how did you actually get your start into crypto? Because I feel like you’re an OG, you’re as OG as it gets, at least from a 2017 perspective, but you’ve been a professional for a minute now. How did you get your transition into web three?

Joe Vezzani: Yeah, I actually consider myself like, almost like a second-generation OG in a way where I mean, I bought my first Bitcoin in January 2015, probably sold it in January 2015 at a loss, and, you know, just kind of found Bitcoin and just, you know, always looking for interesting industries popping up. And it’s more about the people that were in and around the space at the time, you know, I played a lot of video games as a kid, but also, you know, worked in finance, and have done a lot of things. And so, it’s all kind of this like, weird crossover of, kind of, like just gamer type folks that I grew up with and that type of mentality, but also, like a crossover with money and, you know, financial instruments in a way and was like, what is going on over here, and, you know, kind of consider myself an entrepreneur at heart. And, you know, I was like, I need to start something, I need to do something in this space. You know, just too exciting too many people that I saw that I just respected and you know, or whether they were, you know, they were ultra-risk takers or just wacky or just into kind of counterculture type things in a way, it felt like that in those early days. And, you know, I was all in.

So, you’ve known the other two co-founders for a minute now, right? You guys worked at an agency together, right? Like a digital agency, a design agency, remind me.

Joe Vezzani: that an ad agency, John and I have worked together. Yeah.

And then how did Dan come into the picture for LunarCrush?

Joe Vezzani: Dan, and John had built a little, like website building CMS company together. Like they build superfast websites, and it was, you know, your agency can build sites very quickly, or consumers can build out site. So, they built a cool little app. It’s called blocks, it’s still, you could still make websites on there. And they had worked together on a couple of other things prior to that. And so yeah, man, just, you know, they were friends. And so, I knew Dan, through John. And so, John, and I just kind of going back and forth on crypto craziness, we had a bunch of different ideas that we wanted to launch. And then we came up with kind of what we thought would be, what LunarCrushed in, it turned into, and we just went to Dan, and we’re like, yo, do you think you could, like pull this data and kind of get it together in a way that makes sense? And he’s like, yeah, maybe I figure that out. And that’s the beginning. 

Ideas Before LunarCrush

The rest is history. So, the ideas that sort of spiraled before LunarCrush came into existence, you remember what those ideas were?

Joe Vezzani: Tons of ideas. I mean, we had, I mean, there was one. It was like a lot of there were some interesting ones around, like restaurant suggestions. So, like, like lunch suggestions based on, you know, kind of what you were interested in eating, like, we kind of think about, like Uber Eth, but not having to make the decision, you know, so like, basically kind of like, on how you felt and everything else, like a recommendation engine around that, that was kind of cool. We had one that was kind of LunarCrushy, which we’re always kind of talking about. And we kind of have features in LunarCrush with like influencers and everything that we have, that kind of plays off this, but we really felt that any sort of talking head out there from a financial industry, so think like a CNBC or, like Jim Cramer’s of the world, and every one, these people are constantly making calls out there of like, this is going to go up, or this is going to go down, or here’s my call right here. And then they can either delete those tweets, or delete that Reddit post, or they can kind of move something. And so, we kind of had, we wanted to find, we wanted to create at one point of a platform where it was kind of memorializing people’s financial calls. And so, we kind of always felt that there was this outsize return for attention, for people that were, you know, kind of click Beatty, or, like, just pushing on hot button issues out there, like kind of Twitter, but we felt like, man, there’s probably someone that is trading so much better than that person, or is so much better of an investor that should have clout, you know, so we were kind of say, like, there’s a, you know, there’s a supply and demand issue there. So that’s still something that we kind of think about a lot and can definitely play into what we do at LunarCrush, but yeah, man we had like, like, we’re constantly to come up with ideas, but where there’s like 20 to 30 ideas at one point, we created like a decision matrix and just, you know, weighted everything on what we thought was gonna potentially go and then you know, kind of you build what kind of fits into your talent to, any time in place, what’s ready, being early is the same thing as being wrong.

NFT Social Analytics

Yeah, I’m a big fan of LunarCrush, because you guys have a very unique product in the market. And you guys’ very much aggregate social insights and sentiment around what’s happening in the space across multiple platforms. And now you guys recently introduced the NFT side of things, right, and tracking sentiment around NFT communities. That was released last month, a couple of months ago. Right? What has been the progress and so far? Like, how are you seeing people utilize a tool? Has it been utilized the same way as are utilizing the other sort of ERC 20 based social metrics, or are you seeing anything different?

Joe Vezzani: I will say the NFT community is a lot friendlier. It’s a lot friendlier. When we post things out to Twitter on that people will congratulate other influencers, will they call these are the top influencers on this thing, and people will be like, go Adam, or this is awesome. This person’s great. A lot of times in crypto, it’s very tribal, and people are like, you know, fuck that guy. Like, why is he beating me, which I don’t think is the right way to think about it. No, we’ve seen, you know, NFTs are probably 10 to 15% of the traffic we get now on the site, which is pretty cool. And that’s kind of continuingly growing, it’s becoming a larger piece a bigger share of what we’re doing. And yeah, we’re, you know, we launched crypto, it was just kind of you feel it out, you know, which communities do you add, you know, where’s the attention? Where’s the audience? How do you support that? And so, we launched a couple of months ago, and I’d say we are in kind of reconnaissance phase of just seeing what the community thinks about it. How are those communities using it differently than, you know, potentially using it for or trading with crypto, how are people potentially going to integrate our API into maybe what they’re building, but we felt with NFTs, we also launched it, I would say, like, you know, smack dab in the middle of a bear market, you know, people don’t even want to, like open their phones and look at their portfolio, like, I have no money left. But I think, you know, when you think about crypto and you think about the type of information and data that you can get back, you know, there are no earnings reports and 10 Ks, you know, I was talking about this of, you know, there’s not a very specific way to delineate value. And it’s very community driven, but there are some fundamentals there, people can still draw their lines and charts, and they can still look at wallet addresses or you know, maybe GitHub commits, even though you can’t see all the GitHub commits. And so, there’s really no value in that. But you can, with NFTs, it’s just pure community, it is just what is the sentiment of that community and that project, and who is a part of that. And so, it’s a more, I would say, you know, native sentiment driven, you know, community driven marketplace. And so, for us, it’s pretty cool to kind of see that happen. And I think we’re still figuring out, we’re still learning.

Part of the reason why I wanted to have you on this season is because it’s all around on chain data, and data in general and crypto. And as more creators sort of enter the space, and as you guys’ sort of added the NFT social Insights tool, I think it’s interesting, maybe if you could even share some trends or interesting findings, you’ve sort of discovered, you or your team, or maybe someone in the community discovered that, maybe it wasn’t as apparent as, yeah, as not having that insight, for example.

Joe Vezzani: I’ve been from a global or a macro perspective, right now, I think the interesting part to me, you know, being in the industry for four years now, as an operator, and, you know, being an investor a couple years before, this is the,, you know, as we always say, like the kind of the base level of, you know, community members, or contributors, as we call them in the industry is a much higher number than it was like in the last, you know, bear market, there’s a ton of people waiting on the sidelines right now that are, you know, know exactly how to use a Meta mask wallet or have money sitting in Coinbase, or have connected bank accounts to the, you know, to the web three ecosystem that are just waiting in the wings. You know, they’re out there, and everyone is feeling what’s happening from a macroeconomic standpoint, right now, inflation is hurting people, you know, I just posted last night, mortgage rates are at seven and gas prices are at seven in California. Right, I just drove by gas station this morning. It was 659, 689 and $7 for gasoline and, you know, to own a, you know, million-dollar house, which, you know, is not that crazy out in California, like, believe it or not, you know, it’s gonna cost you $8,000 a month to own something like that. And it’s a two bed, two bath, like, things are all out of whack right now. And I think that’s kind of making its way through the system. But, you know, kind of what I’ve seen is that the community is there, the community is strong, and the builders are building. Yes, there have been, you know, some blow ups in the space. I think we had our, crypto had our Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns moment this year. And I think it’s going to come back 10 times as strong after that, because of what we’re seeing, and how many people are still talking about crypto and are out there and what the communities look like, and what’s growing. So, you know, I think we’re collecting anywhere from four or 5 million posts a day, which can mean a billion to 5 billion engagements. So, people interacting with those posts a day, they are out there, those are pretty big numbers. And so, people are out there, and they’re ready to go, I think when things kind of come back.

Key Strategies for Navigating Through a Bear Market

Yeah. What do you think is the best way on strategies to sort of navigate the bear market, because you’ve already been through a few cycles, and you’ve obviously stuck through, you’ve built a company, you have users, like you’re figuring it out, right? And a lot of people that may be entered through this last cycle, whether it be creators, everyday users, they’re sort of maybe seeing this downturn, maybe losing faith losing hope. They’ve issued maybe NF T’s and they were maybe optimistic about them, but now sort of seeing the dust wave sort of kind of like scatter across crypto Twitter, because also engagement online, I feel like has decreased right? Like it’s maybe even gotten quieter a little bit, but I feel like more quality like the people who are there are there like they stuck through thick and thin, right? But for those who are going through it for the first time, how do you sort of advice someone to navigate the situation?

Joe Vezzani: Well, if what you’re saying is true, that person is probably not even listening right now. They’re just like, oh my God, but if they are listening, I would say, you know, my kind of story right now is you know, think a great uncle, he just turned 101. And, you know, he, I think he had his last startup he started when he’s like 92. And like, like, sold it when he was like 97. All right, so it’s like that was a five-year-old business, like, it’s older than LunarCrush. That business was long older, and he started at 92. So, I’d say if you’re like, 25, and you’re like, oh, my God, it’s like, you could start a business and 62 year or whatever or at 60 some years, odd years from now, and still run a business and maybe sell it, like the time horizon and the way that people are thinking about what’s in front of their face versus what’s happening 3040 years down, the line is just outrageous. Right now, this is a long game, and I think even been through a couple of cycles, and just kind of get numb to it a little bit and you just try to make the adjustments and you are kind of, you know, as you get older, you kind of see around the corner just a little bit more. Because you see a little bit of the signs in history repeats itself to a degree. You know, what do they say history, does not repeat itself, but it rhymes. Like, it’s kind of you kind of see some of those things. 

And so, I’d say, if this is your first, like bear cycle, I’d say like, just be stoked that like NFTs even exist. And like, you get to even be a part of that, and just go learn, right? Like, if you had to go tried to do a startup yet to go get a job for a little bit, go get a job for a little bit, you know, enjoy that. And, you know, maybe do a couple of things, especially if you’re in your 20s go travel, go figure things out, you know, if you’re highly obsessed, and you need to be starting a company, you will be and you’re just gonna naturally figure things out based on just the grind that you go through. So, if your heads down, and you’re gonna go do that, you just, you’re going to figure it out. If you’re curious enough, I would say and so if you’re an investor, you’re someone out there, that’s just a community member and excited about what’s going on in the industry, I’d say like, just keep enjoying those communities and keep trying to add value where you can, keep carrying the industry forward. And then they’ll look for ways that you can go work for potentially companies, that are still hiring in web three that, you know, are, you know, that way you can get the experience because we will hit a day where, you know, there will be a lot of people with enough experience in web three, where that’s not just a differentiator, to say like, oh, yeah, I love crypto. So that’s enough to get me a job there. It’s like, you need to start kind of figuring out how the infrastructure works and get some experience.

Evolution of the Web3 Social Landscape

Yep. And I think that sentiment applies whether you’re starting a company, whether you’re a creator, starting a new project, minting NFTs, whatever the action may be, just sort of powering through learning, trying to find a way to give back and not just take right in the bull market, a lot of people extracted value that didn’t really get returned back into the ecosystem. And now, everybody that sort of power through is trying to find a way to still like build momentum, sell out a drop, but it needs to be done in a more strategic way. I feel like using LunarCrush, you can even kind of like figure out what those sentiments are, what the behaviors like what the energy is, like across crypto Twitter, amongst other platforms. I’m curious to hear your point of view. On a recent trend that’s sort of emerging in web three. And across crypto, Twitter web three social. And we’re seeing a lot of new, like decentralized social applications emerge, and that are sort of creating like a new environment, one for creators to build communities and to monetize communities, two I guess, also, from your point of view, like different, like new markets for people to trade and speculate on, for example, how are you seeing this news social, web three social landscape sort of evolve? Do you have any thoughts about that?

Joe Vezzani: It’s not fully decentralized yet. It can’t be. Right, we still have a couple of missing pieces in the infrastructure, right? We don’t have an AWS for blockchain. Right? There’s, you can’t scale an application. You know, imagine like Instagram and like waiting for like the transaction. Right? Like you’re waiting, you’re waiting, you’re waiting. It’s like, oh, I gotta pay gas fee on this, or I have to have a wall with something. It’s like, it’s just not possible yet. But there are these kinds of blends, right, like a web 2.5. And a lot of stuff is like that, I would say. And so, I would say, you know, to the purists out there, they’re just like, this is not even, this isn’t what three, right, which is interesting to think about. But I would say from a social perspective, there’s a drive, right? For that, because people are nervous about their data. Right? They’re nervous about, you know, trusting, massive corporations because of the complexity of those massive corporations. Right? Like, it’s not necessarily like Facebook is evil. It’s, you know, how are the controls in place for the three to 400 potential admins at that company that are just, you know, everyday people that are out there, trying to live their lives that make a salary, and you know, even if Facebook’s paying that person $500,000 a year or a million dollars a year to be an admin of that. It’s not a lot of money for someone else to come in and exploit holes, right? And so how do you have those controls in place? It’s like you can’t and so I think it hasn’t been solved completely yet. And so, I think that the consumer out there is just they want their data. I mean, you see it in all the privacy commercials, you know, Apples, I think I think Apple is trying to own privacy. And now Google is trying to own security, like they’re picking different words that mean kind of same thing, because they want, Google is like, hey, we’re gonna keep all your passwords secure, right? That’s like their ad right now. And Apple is all about, like privacy and creating mass emails. And there’s this shift there, and everyone’s trying to get out ahead of that.

It’s such bullshit, though, because this whole marketing scheme on security and privacy, and the reason why we have data exploitation, and sort of like surveillance is because they all started on these hardware devices, like they enabled that, right, and the level of access and security that they kind of granted. And the features that platforms were able to build alongside on iOS, whatever Android, like, they were the reason like they were the foundation. So why these exploits happened, right? And why we’re sort of like in this new evolution of decentralization, of interoperability, of data ownership, of network ownership, right? These are ethos and values that didn’t exist, I guess, like maybe 10 years ago, when a lot of this stuff was brewing. But now you’re starting to see the consumer mindset shift. And there’s a reason why they’re targeting all these new marketing campaigns towards the consumer, because now people care about that stuff, which I think is a very bullish signal for web three.

Joe Vezzani: Yeah, I mean, that’s where it was going, which is, that’s why I think people want that, right. They want to own their data. And there’s a massive opportunity that’s being missed right now from, like, from a machine learning and an AI standpoint around your data, right? Because, like, this is why encryption is so important. And this is why owning your own data is so important. Yes, it’s because it’s yours, right. But it’s what it could potentially unlock. Right? Imagine if, you know, I had this camera open all day. And this camera, and maybe I had a watch on or I had some glasses on that actually got my blood pressure, right, not just my heart rate, which I actually just talked to an amazing company, go through TechStars program that’s doing that, where you know, my blood pressure, you now have a computer vision on my face. And I’m working all day. And between the two of those, it’s now picking up, hey, it knows that my blood pressure is going up at this point in time. It knows that maybe I have I’m like my face. Like I’m squinting or I’m doing these things, I’m upset. And I can get you know, if you’re in the zone, or you’re focused, you’re doing something, you can get a notification that says, hey, it looks like you should take a break, right? Your heart, your blood pressure is now going up. Right? You look like you’re upset, right? Like the if you’re driving a vehicle, right? And you’re it looks like you’re tired or, you know, a baby’s crying the backseat God forbid, leave a baby in the backseat like that does happen, which is crazy to think about. But I don’t want some company having all that data, or something that’s crazy. It’s like, hey, what if you want to walk naked around your house all day and like, hey, it’s like, hey, it looks like you have added a couple of pounds. Right? Or whatever else it may be. I don’t want someone else having that data. I don’t want 400 engineers at Google.

You don’t want that?

Joe Vezzani:  Depends on how you are. I mean, if you’re like, you know, maybe it’s like, you just gotta put it all out there anyway, you just post off to the internet, you get out, I think that would be a great, you know, I think Bezos did that, didn’t he? And so, I think I think the amount of intelligence that you could get from this is unbelievable, right? But I don’t want 300 engineers at Facebook, looking at that data. I don’t want 300 engineers, you know, wherever else it may be having and having access to that. And so, you know, this is where I think the rub is for web three is, can we get to a spot where I do have full autonomy over that data, it is encrypted to a level that is not breakable, right? Like quantum computing is potentially coming here. And how do you find things that are quantum resistant? Now people are talking about, it’s crazy that we’re even talking about some of these things, but it’s out there. But it’s like, man, I just want to own my regular data, right? And I want to be the person that’s out there so that I can pick the algorithm to go and, you know, I could say, hey, I do want to know if I’m, you know, if you need a bunch of angst and I need to go like listen to Taking Back Sunday for a couple hours, you feel better, you know.

Owning Your Data

So double down more on what you mean by owning your data. Because in web three, there’s this whole notion of like, you are the co-owner of a network, right? You own your community or your community kind of like they have a level of ownership amongst each other in the value that they create. They even capture more of it, as someone who’s building data products, right? How do you sort of further understand the concept of owning your data? What does that really mean? So, you talked about the ability to sort of like, say yes or no to things that sort of use your information. How does it go beyond that? Because that tends to be the sentiment that I hear over and over again, like, I can basically turn off this accessibility from a product or a company using my information like, no more like, you can’t leverage that, right? How else do you see that evolving?

Joe Vezzani: Well, that’s step one. But even if you give someone that data, like how encrypted is that data, right? And can they, you know, say I give someone access to that data, and now they’re storing it on their side, right? And so, everything that I’ve given them at a point in time, sure, I can turn it off. But is that enough of a step forward and I own this data, and I know that no one will ever see it, right? And this is my data. So, when I say owning data, I mean, it’s yours, like no one else has access to it, you own it, no one else owns it, or has it or even has it, it might own might be the wrong word, right? Because it’s who owns what data? And how and why and what is proprietary, right? Like what is a novel piece of data, right? If I use Facebook’s platform, and my data is on there, and I upload a picture, or I upload that picture to Instagram, that’s whose data now, it’s a picture of me that I uploaded to an account. I’m paying, their advertisers are paying them for my attention. Who owns that picture, right? It’s an interesting thing to think about. And right now, it’s like, it’s out on the internet. Yes, it’s public forum. It’s out there. But what’s that ownership look like? And I think web there is moving so quickly and disrupting this so fast that, you know, I don’t even think regulation is even going to be able to catch up to some of this stuff, just because it’s gonna go so fast. And so, I think that’s the cool part. Like the sovereign side of, the sovereign individual is, hey, if the government’s not going to do it, not going to protect me, someone else is going to protect me, I need to protect myself. And so, I feel like there’s that just kind of like macho vibe that is in web three space where people are like, well, we need this to ourselves.

On-Chain Data Versus Off-chain Data

Right, right. But the way we’re sort of doing things right now, is that everything’s on an open network, across multiple open networks. And while things tend to be anonymous, users have choice whether or not they want to Doc’s themselves to an extent, right. Maybe there’s like more advanced tools like chain analysis, that can sort of track the activity online and piece of back to individual in the real world. But in general, like activity, individuals, they tend to be anonymous online, and something that I sort of look at, and I appreciate when it comes to building an audience, monetizing an audience, and web three is sort of the level of access and transparency you have that information, and being able to build and become either a smarter creator or a smarter user, on how you navigate your way across the internet, right? And in the decentralized internet. And I’m curious, like, for someone who’s building, like social sentiment, right? And maybe, and I’m not sure how much of it is actually on chain data versus off chain data, like do you have a percentage mix or is it all off chain?

Joe Vezzani: We don’t pull any on chain data. So, for us, you know, if you’re gonna say, hey, would you guys go in? You know, what is your roadmap look like? Would you go and add? You know, I mean, we have RPCs, that we’re hitting, and we’re pulling data constantly to understand what’s going on these chains, whether it’s for NFTs, and we’re looking at different things, but we’re not showcasing that in an analytics format, or a time series way in any way. For us, it’s, Hey, we’re gonna go grab, what’s the community look like on Tik Tok? Or what’s the, what are these discord communities look like? You know, what other kind of social media, you know, can we pull or go deeper on the analysis of the social media that we have. And so that’s kind of what we see the value as and our mission is to kind of create transparency across social for investors or anyone that that is part of it. But I also love what’s going on with a lot of the the on-chain analysis, because data is important, right, and you do get smarter and operate your business and you can create better products, and you can create more efficient businesses, if you do have the correct analytics to know what’s going on, right? Or if you’re a startup, you know, imagine going to an investor, you know, and them saying, like, oh, what is the user base look like? Or do you guys create enough value that people want to pay for it? Do you have a business there? And you’re like, yeah, we just don’t really know. Like, we just don’t know what all what’s going on, because it’s all anonymous and all everything. 

And so, I think you have to get smarter and work with the KPIs that you get as a business. And, you know, the KPIs start to change, and they start to adjust. And I think a lot of the web two companies are gonna have to take a deep look at this and say, hey, I can’t drop a SDK that does attribution, you know, across like my five apps and drive ads to that to do paid media in these places, you have to get smarter. And that’s where, like what you’re doing here with this show. content creation is insane. It is the, like, I forget where I heard this, but it was someone talking about what’s harder? To create Kim Kardashian audience, and then launch a shoe brand, or to launch a shoe brand, and then try to build Kim Kardashian audience to sell those shoes? It’s impossible to build Kim Kardashian its audience right. And so, it’s like, right. So, it’s like, these content creators and the media is changing. And so, it’s so impactful, and so important to go down that route, because it’s also your built-in organic audience that’s going to drive the brand, it’s going to drive that affinity and the faster people can figure that out. I think the better and there’s this point in time where someone’s an influencer. And then it’s like a brand, right? And you can tell the different way that those people create content, right? Like when you see a tweet from Nike, versus, you know, a tweet from a NFT influencer, right? The Nike thing is like, oh, we created this spot, or we created this thing. And here’s how we want you to feel about what’s going on. And then the influencers, like, here’s how I feel, here’s what, here’s the way I want to see the world. And so, people are, it’s easy to build a brand around that, it’s easy to build products around that. And so, if you’re building a business, you need to think about that in an interesting way.

How Traders and Creators Leverage Data

So, give me some examples on how you’ve seen either, traders’ creators leverage data, because in many instances, Joe, like what you guys are building is very analogous to what’s happening on chain, right? So, you guys are sort of scraping open networks, open ecosystems, right, and making sense of the information very much. So how a lot of these on chain like analytic tools, for example, are scraping on chain data and trying to make sense of that noise.

Joe Vezzani: Well, using the data that we have, you know, there’s a bunch of different types of customers that we have, or users that we have, or community members, right, because everyone, you gotta remember everyone’s goal, when it comes to money or investment is different. It’s a completely unique and individual. And so, you might have someone that’s just coming into the industry, that’s trying to understand what’s going on, maybe they land on LunarCrush, and like, oh, cool, I could see, you know, what chain links community looks like, over time versus, you know, maybe what API threes community looks like, over time. And that’s interesting. And so, I’ve done some research, and I think that, you know, Oracle’s are a interesting way that I want to, I think, are going to be very valuable in the future. And so, I’m going to pick one of those, remember, I’m going to pick both, right? Because both are pretty solid, right? And so, we give you that kind of extra dimension, to make a decision on for things like that. And, you know, or discoverability, right, like, you’re out there, and you’re saying like, man, what projects are out there that are interesting, I’ve got, you know, I want to, you know, look at a project maybe that is smaller, maybe it’s a small team, you know, maybe they only have a couple mentions across whatever, like, you know, social media site that’s out there. Or maybe I saw something or a friend messaged me about it. 

Now you can come and get that kind of extra layer, extra dimension of, it’s not just the price and the market cap everything else. It’s like, what does this community look like? who are maybe some of the influencers that have posted about this? Oh, dang, I saw this influencer, I’ve seen this influencer, I’m like, 30 other tokens that have gone to zero, probably stay away, right? Like, so there’s those types of things. We’re trying not to make judgment calls too much. Because, you know, we do want to provide the cleanest and most organized source of data possible, so that people can make those educated decisions on their own. But people ask us, like, oh, why did you guys listen to this shit coin or this scam project? And I’m like, well, first of all, how do you know that this camp project? Do you have any, like, Who are you right? And second off it, if we don’t list it, and show that this, you know, we calculate spam and we calculate, you know who the influencers are, if we don’t show that, they don’t have anywhere to go to make that decision. They’re just in the dark again. And so, you know, you have to look at the good and the bad, and you have to kind of create a playing field, that’s even. And that’s doesn’t change very often, so that people can over time kind of know, the decision and the decision doesn’t change on them. And it’s not like we’re changing the algorithm a year later. And now suddenly, it’s different, right? Like you kind of benchmark these, you know, you benchmark the way that you collect and what these, you know, these metrics look like, so people can get a little bit smarter decision.

Common Mistakes People Make When Using Data While Decision-Making

Yeah. What are some of the biggest mistakes you see people making when using data to guide their decision-making process? Any come to mind?

Joe Vezzani: Maybe too much. They’re relying too much on the data, and they’re not going a little bit with what their intuition is. You know, I see it as, I forget if it was like base camp or something. I think his name is Jason Freedberg, Freedberg and he was talking about, I mean, they never took VC money. You know, and they didn’t really even have like KPIs. They probably had some KPIs were like, hey, how much money did we make this month? Is it more than we had to pay? You know, but it was very light touch. I think when it came to roadmap, and you know, tons and tons and tons of user testing, I would say, and like, oh, we need to, you know, ABCD test this color on the homepage, right? It’s like, no, no, like, you don’t need to ABCD test that and have a designer just like hate their life while they work for you creating like AB test for like, in perpetuity. So, I think sometimes too much, too much data is maybe a burden, I think it’s finding a KPI that’s so valuable that you don’t even want to tell anyone want that KPI is, and boiling that down to one or two things that you think really impact your business or really impact your investing strategy. Find what works for you, what your, everyone’s risk tolerance is different. You know, I’m sure you got people aping into crazy, you know, projects that are coming out. Yeah, they’re just like, you know, like, you know, and like those people a little sadistic, right. It’s like, almost being addicted to gambling, like, they want to go to zero, right? They want, like, they need to get there. There’s a little bit of that. So, if you have a friend like that, like maybe, you know, send it there’s a one 800 number to send them.

 But I think it’s more about it’s more about finding what works for you, what’s your risk tolerance, and, you know, then kind of working your way out from there, because trading is very difficult. It’s very hard, you know, even like, investing can be seen as trading in a way, you know, first off, it’s like, what’s in your funnel, right? What do you actually see, right? Like, if you’re coming on to your VC, and you’re gonna launch a fund, it’s like, do you just think you’re gonna get like the best deal flow? You think we’re just gonna walk in your front door? Like, no, it’s not. So, there’s a time period to understanding. You know, are you seeing and do you have enough preview? Do you have enough time to dedicate to it? I think, for the most part, I think most people probably don’t. And so, I think the future is, in order for in our space to kind of keep swinging that pendulum towards the consumer and giving them power over some of the institutions and some of the kind of the not level playing field that’s happening out there, is to create more automation. You know, it’s kind of like with Robin Hood, like, everyone’s an investor now, right, like, Robin Hood made options easy. Like, who can make options easy, it’s impossible, right? But it’s like, if they figured that out. And they made the interface so simple, that people can figure out how to do that. We can make crypto easy, right? And we can make investing easy in a diversified low risk basket of projects. We can make that happen. And I think that’s another piece that, I saw Michael sailor post something about, he was like, oh, bitcoins up at 6% in the last two years. And then like Google, Apple, blah, blah, blah, all these things were down, right, all these equities were down.

And then, you know, what he didn’t mention was there’s like 48 others, whether it’s a layer one or a large cap crypto project, that’s now a massive Dao and ecosystem fund and has a larger VC fund than most VCs in the country, is up to 1,914%. Right? It’s like they’re just glancing over. And these were two-year timelines as well. Right? And it’s like, sure, like, you could say that, you know, maybe sometime in the future that those things might not exist, but like, you were talking about a two-year timeline, and you glanced over 50 to 100 other projects that just absolutely destroyed the return of the kind of main project out there. And I think there’s something interesting that because, you know, the S&P 500 is only 500 stocks, QQ is only 100 companies, right, the Dao was 30 companies and so like to not pay attention to the top 100 to 200 projects in the web three space that have outperformed everything. Even if there are only 250 Crypto projects going forward, that’s still a massive piece of the market. Everyone’s like oh tens of thousands go to zero, well so do tens of thousands of companies go to zero every year people start, lots of pizza shops, and they don’t make it and so I think it’s, people just are, they’re not, their perspective is so skewed because of what, you know their feed looks like, their individual feed and my new thing now is don’t trust your feed. Like I just told you they’re like five.

I just saw you tweet that, yeah. 

Joe Vezzani: 5 million posts a day like having, who I see I see like you posting like some dumb things on Twitter and then like John replying to them and like that’s it right? That’s like three people and then I’m just telling you there’s 5 million crypto specific posts a day and 5 million engagements on top of that, like you can’t see what’s going on.

Things Joe is Excited About During This Bear Market

Crazy, wild. As we continue our path down the bear market, Joe, what’s on your radar? What are you looking forward to? Any new topics, any new sort of primitives, ideas, communities? Show away? Like, I’m curious to get some alpha, because you’re so close to the data.

Joe Vezzani: What are you saying? The bear markets are going to continue? You’re saying we’re going down? I think maybe it’s over.

Whether it’s down or not, it’s going to it’s like, it’s still walking forward. That’s how I sort of see it. It’s like, it’s not going up yet. It’s not going further down. But it’s sort of steady. And if the tide may sort of continue at that pace for a minute.

Joe Vezzani: Okay, September 27. That’s Adams calling the market? 

Yes, yes. 

Joe Vezzani: 2022. Yeah, I do think, I think we’ve got a lot of uncertainty still out there. I do think that the worst of at least, the major kind of news form from Crypto is kind of through or through the woods, on a lot of that. So, I think there’s just going to be this choppiness. You know, as everyone kind of trades off the same narrative, you know, which is also interesting to me, because it’s like, you know, if I’m the chairman of the Fed, and I’m saying I’m going to raise rates in the United States, and then suddenly, like, you know, maybe my company is on, you know, the, the DAX in Germany, and my company now goes, you know, the value of my company goes down, because of like, the chairman of the US, I feel like, that’s also just kind of interesting, like, it just shows you how correlated and how uncertain everything is right now. But, you know, when you think about different technologies that are being built right now, you know, what I’m starting to see the beginning of right now that is coming to market, is the industry is going to start kind of horizontally scaling. So as opposed to, you know, when you think about you can vertically scale. So, like make Ethereum super-fast, low fees, everyone just can be on Ethereum. Because it’s just epic. And, you know, there’s no gas fees, and there’s no, I think you don’t need a bridge over that’s like a vertical scale. And then you think horizontal scale is, you know, going out from there. So going to different layer ones. So going to the, you know, the polygons the world, the stacks the world going, you know, off to Cosmos, right. 

So that’s kind of the horizontal scale. And so, another layer out from that, though, is what you’re seeing across, you know, by Binance application side chain, or polygon super nets, I think avalanche, sea chain, maybe and then, like cosmos kind of pioneered this with like the internet of blockchains. I think they’ve been just kind of, the brand has been obviously beaten down a little bit by what happened with Tara. But you still see really solid projects rebuilding over there. Because the interoperability and the composability part of being able to kind of move around from standalone blockchain to standalone blockchain is very intriguing, I think. And so, you know, you can almost think about it, is if you’re going to create an application sidechain, or you’re going to create some sort of standalone blockchain, I’m not calling it a layer one, right? Like, it’s not like these projects are going to have a standalone blockchain and then go, like, for the most part, kind of compete with Ethereum, or compete with a polygon. That’s not what they’re doing. They’re saying, hey, like, I want to be my own gas fee. And I think that the transaction speed, and the decentralization is great enough, that that’s the, that’s kind of the trade off, right. So almost think about spinning up like a test net on Ethereum, you know, and you’ve got six to eight nodes, or whatever you have. And now imagine that being its own standalone blockchain that you build your own application on. And, you know, you could kind of bridge back and forth to whatever kind of chain or ecosystem that you need to, but for whatever the specific purpose is of your application, you are spinning something up, you’re spending a couple of nodes up for that specifically. 

So, I think that’s an interesting thing that’s starting to happen. And I think we’re gonna see more of it. And it’s because the infrastructure is getting a lot more simple to do so. So, you know, it used to be very hard to go, you know, buy a bunch of boxes and stand up like servers in your garage. You know, I think we’ve all seen like, HBO, Silicon Valley, who’s got like, blow through the wall, right? Like, they even had a name for it. I should know, I watch that show so many times, it’s hilarious, but you know, that was the way that you know, servers used to be run. You know, it even used to be, you know, the dumb terminals, right? And an office, you’d have this IBM mainframe sitting in this kind of back office and then you’d have a terminal, so you’d have your monitor, you know, it would go to this mainframe and then like in the 90s, you started have like processing speed increase and then like the amount of space on you know, the personal computer increase and things moving back to the house a little bit, cable started to kind of go out there and Ethernet went out there and so then it started to go there. but they were like zip drives, and that you’re a lot younger than I am. But there’s that thing going on. And then like the cloud came, and it was like, right back, right. And now we’re almost going to a dumb terminal again, like I’ve got my phone. And it’s all up there, which when I say up there, it means it’s in a data center in Ohio, or a data center in Oregon or wherever it may be. But I think that, my point there is, it’s gotten so simple to spin up a cloud instance and build a, you know, a cloud app that runs super-fast and can be all over the world, there’s an advantage that you can build huge businesses on top of that infrastructure. 

And so, with crypto and with web three, we’re now going to continue to build out that infrastructure. And so, it’s going to be much more simple for projects to kind of build out application side chains that are easy to use, and more of that content is on chain. So, the transparency increases, you know, imagine, like Coinbase, like just saying, hey, we’re gonna build on an application side chain, and we’re have these nodes that are run by these, who knows consulting companies or whatever it may be, proof of authority, kind of like V chain, kind of pioneered some of that stuff, but you have Coinbase doing that, and trying to bring as many transactions on chain as you can. When you send money to Coinbase, it goes to like, their Coinbase wallet. And then, you know, they have other kind of sub wallets, which, you know, they have their own kind of internal system there, which is interesting. If you think about Coinbase everyone’s doing that. They could have just picked usernames. But you have a wallet address there. But you could just put anything else, which I think is like was a really smart move for them, because they’ve trained everyone, but so yeah, that’s what I’m really, I’m excited to see kind of what that does, right? What kind of projects are going to be built? How does it look when you know, there’s 500 standalone blockchains that are would probably have launched some sort of token or anything else? You know, it’s like, why doesn’t like when people talk about ape coin, you know, they’re like, oh, they’re gonna be on their own chain. You know, it’s like, it’s not that big of a lift, you know, as it potentially used to be.

Outro

Right. I think those are all really good insights. And I think it’s also a perfect place to wrap up but before I let you go, Joe, where can we find you? Where can we find LunarCrush? Show it away

Joe Vezzani: Yeah, just at LunarCrush on Twitter and at Joe Vezz. 

Let’s go.

Joe Vezzani: See me and Adam banter back and forth.

If you dig YouTube, you dig deep enough, you’ll find some old cringy videos but classic videos to say the least. But yeah, man. Thanks for being on. Always welcome on. Until next time.

Joe Vezzani: Alright brother.

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BlockchainBrett highlights his new article “the crypto creator economy”, why he believes content NFTs are the next wave, and understanding the value of collecting content.
Podcast Transcript

Content NFTs.

BlockchainBrett highlights his new article “The Crypto Creator Economy”, why he believes content NFTs are the next wave, and understanding the value of collecting content.