Eth Denver 2023: Day 1 Recap

My Co-Founder at Bello, Ellie Farrisi is with me for this one tapping into the live energy of ETH Denver 2023.

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Mint Season 7 Episode 17 welcomes my Co-Founder at Bello, Ellie Farrisi. This edition is a bit shorter than our previous ones, but that’s because we’re tapping into the live energy of ETH Denver 2023.

In this episode, we delve into the market narratives surrounding the event and discuss some of the highlights, such as Bello’s newest feature that showcases Revenue dashboards. We also cover this week’s hackathon and other exciting events taking place at ETH Denver 2023.

This is the perfect way to catch up on everything that transpired on the last few days of the conference, and we hope you enjoy this brief update.

Time Stamps

  • 00:00 – Intro
  • 01:21 – First Impressions of Eth Denver
  • 05:24 – How Would You Explain Hacker Energy?

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What’s up guys, another episode at the mint podcast. With me today, I have Ellie Farrisi, my co-founder at Bello. Ellie what’s up?

Ellie Farrisi: Hey guys, how’s everyone doing?

I’m feeling good, Ellie. Excited to be in this corner of a room, in this co working spot in Denver, Colorado.

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, glow Café, co working vibe. We’re here in Denver. We just had a few days of build week and now hopping into the official Eth Denver conference which starts today.

Starts today. You’ve been hacking over the last few days now. 

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, a mixture of finding time to work on a hackathon project and working on a new Bello feature shipping and so I’ve mostly just has done coding. I think you and I, was it Tuesday we sat from like 9am to 6pm. Like I didn’t even move, my back was like hurting after a minute. But just shipping stuff, getting things done.

So, we have been heads down the last few days, as Ellie mentioned rolling out a new feature Bello revenue dashboard, helping creators understand their gross revenue, how fast they sold out their drops and who their top supporters by each spend are. So, we’ve been heads down the first few days of build week. So rather than building the hackathon, and we’ve been hacking out a new feature. Bello started at a hackathon, so I feel like it’s very.

Ellie Farrisi: A lot of the hacker, hacker vibes all the way.

First Impressions of Eth Denver

All the way. Ellie, I wanted to do this episode at Eth Denver because in the background you’ll probably hear noise, we’re at this coffee shop sitting in a glass room. And there’s a bunch of people around us working and in this echoey room, kind of documenting the last few days. Yeah, and also sort of what to expect in the next few weeks, feel like. So, number one, first impressions of Eth Denver, what are your thoughts?

Ellie Farrisi: So, this is my, I guess third or technically second in persons. I was at Eth Denver a year ago, which honestly was probably one of the biggest career, just life transformative experiences I had. It was my first like dev focus hackathon. And I think that that ethos of Eth Denver really bleeds in every year after a year. Yeah, it’s just really, I found that Eth Denver is a place that’s really dedicated to builders and to creative minds and people trying to solve the problem for the right why. And so, I’m super excited to be back here a year later. This is also the place that my dear friend, Adam Levy and I met each other for the first time a year ago. 

Pretty wild. 

Ellie Farrisi: Kind of crazy. Yeah.

Like the idea for Bello also started like a year ago at Eth Denver. Eth Denver is like home, home to Bello and to us and I wouldn’t want it any other way. 

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, had the Queen George event last year.

Yes. Queen Georgia event, where we sold tickets as NFTs, pulled up a conference or a concert at your mom’s house which is a cool venue I know and I started saying that because in my mind I was like, wow, what did I do? But it’s really sick venue, really, really cool to say the least. And we started this concert. And I think it was like season four, season four, one in the middle of the episode. This was three seasons ago. And if you scroll down your Spotify feed or YouTube playlist, you’ll see the episode with Queen George and I sort of like talking about this moment and what we learned from setting up this IRL, URL concert. But even more importantly, Ellie, I want your reflection on the week so far. Because we just came from a CSS dinner, lunch actually, with a bunch of the other people that are in a16z Crypto startup school cohort, which we announced what? Like last week or 10 weeks ago, a couple weeks ago. So, as a primer really quick, Bello got accepted into a16z is web three accelerator. We’ve been working on Bello for a few months now. We went live August 5 with the private beta. And we kind of got like a blessing to be in this accelerator with a bunch of other really cool companies, twenty-five other companies to be exact. And in Denver, there was this like little meetup, where we got to meet a bunch of these people. I feel like there’s like half the cohort.

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, it’s really, really inspiring to see. I don’t know I mean; I think that’s Eth Denver crypto in person energy, just this builder mentality and to be so close hearing everyone else’s projects, the different various stages that each of us were at. Yes, it was a really special day. I think on top of that, the start of the week. I’ve been here since Friday. So, I’ve been here for a few days now. Just going to the early stages of the hackathon part and seeing, you know sitting next to all the devs, talking to other people about the projects they’re building, you know, some people I feel like approached the hackathon of like, how many sponsor bounties can I submit? Like, you know, how big of a bag can I walk away with, and some people come in with, like not submitting to anything and they’re just like, I have this idea. I want to go for it. And you know, they’re both great ways to hack. Adam and I think in Amsterdam definitely went the route of like, we didn’t submit to anything. We just were like, let’s build this cool idea. In Bogota for me, our team submitted to like, every second.

This took, like 15.

Ellie Farrisi: It was crazy, me and my friends from another block, shout out to them.

How Would You Explain Hacker Energy?

Shout out to them. Yeah. How would you explain hacker energy?

Ellie Farrisi: It’s kind of like this burst of momentum like, I don’t know. I mean, you have this problem is in front of you. You have to really quickly and in a concise way, figure out the problem, figure out a solution and not deviate from the MVP of that solution. That’s actually probably one of the hardest things about building a hackathon project is like, you can get really distracted and really like derailed of like, oh, there’s a million different things. What if this feature, we could do this thing, etc. And the reality is you have X amount of time to accomplish it. You can’t do everything. So, how do you figure out what becomes the thing that you actually pitch and demo to everyone? So yeah, it’s really always really interesting to see. And of course, there’s iterations and I think it was actually one of the really amazing statistics that we learned today at the lunch for CSS. The Crypto startup school is I believe around 70% of the crypto startup school came from hackathon projects.

That’s wild.

Ellie Farrisi: Which is so amazing in my opinion, like that’s beautiful. I don’t know. To know that people like came together, they had a vision for idea. They were able to like really quickly ship out a very minimal MVP, I think is huge because I feel like with a lot of companies who don’t start that way, you get really bottlenecked of like, we have to figure out, we have to plan, we have to do all this stuff and it takes a lot more time and slows you down versus just like shipping something that’s broken and barely works and just like get it out there to the world. So, I think that hacker mentality really, really persevered in this way.

For me joining hackathons is sort of being a student. I’m not technical. I feel like I bring other things to the team. So, being around hackers, number one, and then also participating has taught me a lot about the building process. And I feel like I learned figma only eight months or something like that. 

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, Adam kills it.

 Because it’s been a journey. So, being in this energy is invigorating and very infectious. And I’m excited to see what, number one, people push out in the hackathon because I always go to like the submission pages. And I try to see like what’s trending because you can get a sense of like the pulse of the market and what’s hot based on what people are building in hackathons, based on the projects that they’re submitting. So, I tweeted this a couple of days ago, kind of recache, like rehashing the sort of narratives that I hear at Eth Denver, and I’m hearing a lot of people talk about crypto mobile. I’m hearing a lot of people talk about wallets. I’m hearing a lot of people talk about web three social. And I’m curious what the hackathon submissions look like and if they fall in par with these various themes that people are talking about. Have you heard something similar?

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, definitely a lot of those key undertones, talking a lot of the different protocols. ZK is huge. There’s a ton of people scroll ZK, saying building in that sort of zero knowledge proof, like hidden identity way so, I’m excited to see a lot of those projects. I think there might just be, I don’t know if it’s a lot of people building this one or what exactly, but I heard that the presentations are actually split across two days. So, Saturday and Sunday I think most people are presenting. Yeah, it’s definitely always really inspiring to see what people come up with 

I’m excited about what we just shipped, the revenue dashboards. And they came about when Reo Cragun was a web three and a music artists hit us up. He’s like I have all these drops, I have over 20 drops. So, we hit at loners Dao. And loner Dao is in crypto native music collective where they curate a lot of really cool web three native artists and drop music with them. Obviously, I wish I could see all the revenue across loners Dao. And I know intentionally when we were building out the initial versions of Bello, we strayed away from revenue because we wanted to surface other metrics that kind of like showcase Bello’s product in a very unique way. But I felt like now, it was the perfect time to release it because not only Reo but we were also getting people underneath the scenes, asking us like okay, this is great. I can see my ads income; I can understand what price to sell my NFTs at, I can see what time of day I should drop it. But I also want to see the revenue accrued across all those drops. So, I felt like it was like an optimal moment to bring that dashboard into place.

Ellie Farrisi: Absolutely. Yeah. I think having the insight into, like one quick place to look at, like you know, you could even go to open sea and you can see the total volume, which really just calculates secondary sales and having Bello be a place where you can see your primary sales, understand like I minted an NFT on sound or I minted NFT on decent or wherever it was, I had 25 editions, 100 editions ,500 additions, how long did it take for people to actually opt in and buy those? That’s a huge metric that I think really shows like dedication to a community. Because I believe we were talking about Annika rose earlier today and how we’ve worked a lot with Nevada collective and helping support her and her first, you know she is Bello data leading up to her first drop on sound XYZ. And so I think, you know, taking all the data she’s able to use and then now seeing like how quickly she was able to sell out her drop on sound, really shows growth that helps people like plan the next things, understand the engagement, all of that sort of stuff.

There’s this stigma of tweeting out, like yo my drop sold out in one hour, you know where my drops hold out a few seconds. Now, as you continue to drop more things, you can measure, engage the rate of excitement around your project, right? And how quickly that thing sold out. So that you can go back to the drawing table, reflect on that. And see, okay, if it sold out in an hour, what did we do for it to enable for it to be sold at an hour and maybe we can get it down to 30 seconds, you know, 5 minutes, 30 minutes, whatever the metric may be. So, being conscious of those areas of data is something that we were super excited about rolling out this dashboard.

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, especially when you think about this ability to aggregate across multiple collections and say you, as one artist or creator have dropped 10, 15 different NFT collections. And you go through, and you click through each of them, you see it’s like oh it took a day, it took you know 12 hours, took this and then you see one that took like three weeks or something like that. Like that’s a really strong indicator for you, like something to look at and be like okay, well this like totally skewed my average and now my average is more like you know, a few days it took to sell out, when really like it was just as one drop that took a little bit longer. And how can you dive further into that one, or one that took really short and sort of like, recreate or move or pivot away from certain ideas and it actually gives you data behind the actions that you’re creating and sort of the next steps that you’re choose to do.

Another reason why I think like the why now, falls into place with release in this dashboard is because there’s a lot of heat around secondary sales and the entire like open sea versus blur marketplace for wars and secondary sales and royalties for creators are getting slashed. So, my bet and I think our bet is that there’s gonna be a lot more of innovation around the primary sales. So, having more metrics around that is super important to understand, as you experiment with more ideas, concepts around selling out a drop.

Ellie Farrisi: I’m curious Adam for you, like you’re a big advocate on this idea of like free mints and growing your collector base and doing all this stuff. Based on this stuff that’s now happening with potentially slash and create a royalties on secondary markets. Where do you see the future of primary markets? Like do you see them being something that, we keep having the free mints, but people charge more, maybe for if they do their second drop or like how are you seeing it?

I think we may see a rise in non-transferable tokens.

Ellie Farrisi: Okay.

And tokens that don’t have really secondary volume and tokens that aren’t, like by default are not able to be traded. I predicated an entire mint community of free NFTs, the seasonal pins, they’re free to mint, they’re nontransferable. So, I know also a16z invested right now, I think it was in the YGG co-founder, like I think was like a few million dollars to experiment on the forefront of social, not social tokens of sold on tokens. Excuses me, thank you. So, I’m excited to see where they go. I think we’ve only scratched the surface of what a primary sale is. I think there’s more to be explored especially when, once again, the platforms are in control of our revenue. And for whatever reason, we are in the middle of the chaos. So, we can bypass that by experimenting more primary sales. And the second thing is, experimenting more on what happens after the sale, or relationships that you make with your collectors. And what comes through that. That’s something that the marketplaces can take over because in web three, the creator is the platform. Wherever we go, our community of collectors follow. So, I’m excited to see where that thesis pans out and other people experimenting on that. 

Ellie Farrisi: Totally.

I have intel from different projects that they’re going to be doing that already. So, I feel like it’s already going to spark a lot of innovation, a lot of interesting curiosities around the primary sales so we’ll see what happens. 

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah, I think that idea of like, still don’t know, I’m very excited about I think the idea of like paid sold out and is really interesting, like how can I prove that, like once I’m like, one time I’m supported for this thing, and it’s not for this potential growth of secondaries. It’s like I’m opting into something. And I know, we’ve had a ton of ideas as being in Eth Denver, and honestly, just as a side note, I think the Eth Denver ideation that comes out of here is like super inspiring, and I feel like we have just continuously been thinking about new product ideas, new innovations for Bello. And, you know, I love that. So, I think this one was a perfect one that we’ve thought about and there are definitely tons of iterations and things we want to even expand upon here. So, where do you see this going next?

You know, I want to think like, I know what’s going to happen in the future, but we’re all just learning as we go. And I think Eth Denver is primal hub for understanding where these next points and directions will sort of take us. So, I’m excited to see how the week unfolds. I’m excited to see where projects get created. I’m excited to meet all these companies and creators are out here. So, I think it’s also a perfect place to sort of wrap this up too, because it leaves people wanting more. So, we’re gonna have to do a check in at some point afterwards, to see what was the.

Ellie Farrisi: Let’s see if Ellie manages the time to submit our hackathon projects. Say very clearly, like the food theme themes.

Ellie, this was great. We’ll do this again soon. 

Ellie Farrisi: Yeah.

Until then. See you around.

Ellie Farrisi: Awesome. Cheers.

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