GameFi and Tiktok: a social media perspective on promotion of StepN
0xaB2D
May 27th, 2022

Author

Kai Liu

PhD candidate at C9 University of China & Analytics Researcher@RPD, Twitter: @0xMintstone

Professor Cao

Professor at C9 University of China & Analytics Researcher@RPD,Twitter: @charlie_cao

Copyright by Real Player DAO, Twitter: @realplayerdao

StepN's founder pointed out a series of user acquisition and dissemination paths of StepN in the AMA at the end of April. For example, StepN started to rely on KOL and slowly shifted to users' self-propagation; its users gradually transitioned from woolly countries that grabbed airdrops to developed countries such as Japanese, Korean, European and American users after a few months of transition. We have analyzed StepN's user base and its behavioral characteristics through social media data, and also discussed the above points. Our analysis verifies the main official claims of StepN, and also maps out the important factors of StepN's success.

Social media has become an important marketing tool for the NFT market, with TikTok, the most popular short-form video broadcast platform at the moment, the top-notch hashtag #crypto has already 148 billion views and the number is still growing. According to Stilt research report, 94% of crypto buyers are Gen Z or Millennials (18-40 years old), and 59% of them believe cryptocurrency can make them richer. Meanwhile, TikTok is one of Gen Z’s top social media platforms, with 63% of them using it weekly. TikTok is a powerful platform to market cryptocurrency to this generation.

A typical example is Dogcoin: how it got so popular in 2020 with Tiktok. It all started when TikTok user James G (@cannolicrypto) uploaded a comedic video that people could "all get rich" with mere investment of $25 in DogeCoin. The video went viral: it not only caused Dogcoin to rise from $0.70, but also sparked interest in cryptocurrencies and drove users to create content around them. As of April 2022, #crypto has generated 148 billion views. There is no doubt that Tiktok has a huge influence in the crypto community and can help us better understand the status and progress of crypto projects.

When posting videos on TikTok, users can use # in the title to add hashtags (not mandatory). Users usually add tags related to the video content. In particular, to increase the likelihood of their videos being recommended by the system, videos are often times tagged with popular tags on top, such as #foryou, which is very popular. The setting of hashtags directly affects the video's play volume. Studying the hashtag settings of videos with high play volume can help us understand the current user focus on crypto projects.

To show the connection between video tags, we obtained all video data of videos with #stepn tags on tiktok. In order to better represent the accuracy of the stepn tag network and avoid the influence of some low quality videos, we excluded videos with less than 2000 views before visualization.

Figure 1. Tiktok StepN hashtag

We use the tags of the videos to build co-occurrence networks: co-occurrence networks are graphical visualizations of the probability of tags appearing together. The co-occurrence network makes it possible to find central words and topic clusters of the network, allowing us to quickly target hot words in social media related to StepN.

Figure 2. Co-occurrence network of #StepN

This network relationship diagram conveys several messages. First, the graph shows that the binance hashtag is present in most of the short videos that contain the "StepN" (compared to other hashtags). This also shows that GMT's early launch on the Binance exchange is a very important factor for StepN's success. Secondly, in terms of identification, StepN is more recognized as a "move-to-earn" product than a traditional game or "gamefi". Third, Japanese and Eastern European users are the most active users on tiktok. This actually confirms Jerry's statement in the AMA that users are self-propagating, and after the early stages are mostly users from developed countries. this user profile of StepN is the opposite of Axie, as Axie's later users are mostly YGG Guild Scholars.

Other social media data such as Google, StepN and Discord further confirm our view above. More importantly, our analysis of the existing StepN user structure and its framework can provide decision support and framework for the design, product iteration and promotion development of StepN and other game projects, as well as provide decision reference for subsequent StepN or other game participants.

Figure 1. Tiktok StepN hashtag
Figure 1. Tiktok StepN hashtag

We use the tags of the videos to build co-occurrence networks: co-occurrence networks are graphical visualizations of the probability of tags appearing together. The co-occurrence network makes it possible to find central words and topic clusters of the network, allowing us to quickly target hot words in social media related to StepN.

Figure 2. Co-occurrence network of #StepN
Figure 2. Co-occurrence network of #StepN

This network relationship diagram conveys several messages. First, the graph shows that the binance hashtag is present in most of the short videos that contain the "StepN" (compared to other hashtags). This also shows that GMT's early launch on the Binance exchange is a very important factor for StepN's success. Secondly, in terms of identification, StepN is more recognized as a "move-to-earn" product than a traditional game or "gamefi". Third, Japanese and Eastern European users are the most active users on tiktok. This actually confirms Jerry's statement in the AMA that users are self-propagating, and after the early stages are mostly users from developed countries. this user profile of StepN is the opposite of Axie, as Axie's later users are mostly YGG Guild Scholars.

Other social media data such as Google, StepN and Discord further confirm our view above. More importantly, our analysis of the existing StepN user structure and its framework can provide decision support and framework for the design, product iteration and promotion development of StepN and other game projects, as well as provide decision reference for subsequent StepN or other game participants.

Figure 3. Google trend on StepN
Figure 3. Google trend on StepN

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