Bitcoin conferences and events are not only a great opportunity to meet like-minded people, but also for startups to looks for potential investors. Most conferences will have a dedicated timeslot for Bitcoin startups to show what they have to offer. But is this approach right or wrong? The maker movement is facing a completely different economy model, which seems to work quite well so far.
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Maker Movement Not Focusing On Investing
Unlike most other branches of technology and innovation – including Bitcoin – the maker movement events are not focusing on investing in companies. Despite all of this, events such as the World Maker Faire are attracting tens of thousands of people from all over the world, as everyone wants to engage in this new “social experiment”.
Events such as World Maker Faire attract a lot of companies from around the world as well, as the recent edition saw over 900 startups and businesses showcase what they can do. None of these companies receives any funding from the Maker Faire organizers, though, as this is not what the maker movement is not about that.
This is where the companies involved in the maker movement sphere are different from other areas of technology and innovation. By creating hardware quickly, and making it available for immediate marketing, there is no clear need to attract individual investors. Furthermore, all of the marker movement companies can rely on platforms such as Kickstarter and other crowdfunding sites to raise additional funds.
Innovation takes center stage at these types of events, which is what any type of technological gathering really should be about. Swapping ideas and finding inspiration are the major goals of the conferences, as there is a lot of valuable feedback to be collected from both visitors and potential competitors.
Truth be told, the maker movement has seen a tremendous growth in terms of conference attendance numbers over the years. During the first year of World Maker Faire events, roughly 22,000 visitors attended these conferences. Fast forward to today and the number of worldwide events attendees has increased to over 1 million.
Bitcoin Conferences To Follow This Example?
Suggesting that Bitcoin conferences should follow the lead of World Maker Faire might be a stretch too far, for now at least. Bitcoin events are also about networking with like-minded people, and serve as a place for startup companies to share their ideas of services with the audience. But there are major differences between both sectors as well.
Unlike the maker movement, the Bitcoin ecosystem remains a vast mystery to most everyday citizens. Not only is this disruptive virtual currency a technological marvel that people have a hard time wrapping their head around, but it’s also revolutionizing the way we think, act, and work towards the future. All in all, there is a lot of education to be done over the next few years.
On top of that, Bitcoin conferences around the world are nowhere close to attracting 1 million visitors on a yearly basis. There are no tangible products to be on display, as most of the services and platforms based on Bitcoin and blockchain technology are still in development for now.
Last but not least, Bitcoin startups do not have access to crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and IndieGogo. The main goal for these companies is finding [angel] investors to get things rolling, as startup costs are quite high. Until properly decentralized crowdfunding platforms for Bitcoin companies start to appear, relying on [angel] investors in the only option.
What are your thoughts on the future of Bitcoin startups to secure funding? Should the approach change, or is it fine the way it is? Let us know in the comments below!
Images courtesy of World Maker Faire, Shutterstock, Ajjuliani