👋🏾 Hey, Michael here! Welcome to another edition of Building Crypto, where we deep dive into different crypto products and explore how they use different product principles.
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Farcaster is one of the major players in decentralized social networks. They’ve built a protocol that’s built a strong early adopter community around it, and a number of apps on top of it. The core team, lead by Dan Romero and Varun Srinivasan, have built the protocol and its main app, Warpcast.
There’s a lot to unpack in that paragraph alone, and in the deep dive, but there are a few high level themes I want to call out:
Building a brand for both a protocol and an app is tough, especially if the market thinks of the two as one and the same. It doesn’t help if you alternative between both brands during the onboarding process.
The UX for a product in its early days will be different from when it starts to grow. That's especially the case if there's a waitlist where initial users want to be on the platform. That’s the case for Farcaster right now, and that’s ok. But also know that you can get away with things that later users won’t let slide.
The goal of onboarding is to get users to their aha moment as soon as possible. Like with the Lens Protocol, setting up a profile is a core part of a social product. But that doesn’t mean you need to set up every part of the profile during onboarding. Determine what’s a necessity and what is optional or can have default options. Only have users define what’s necessary and move on to get users to the magic.
The cold start problem is tough for any product, but especially for a social network. Do everything you can to avoid it. Make it easy for users to get started and start seeing the benefits right away.
Below you’ll find annotated screenshots of most of the onboarding flow for Farcaster, with details on what’s working well and what could be improved.
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