How to build a web3 project

As @garyvee once famously said, “98–99% of NFT projects will end up being bad investments.”

So how can you outshine the competition and separate yourself from the web3 crowd?

Here’s a guide to empower founders with the right tools and principles to build the future of web3 🧵

70% of startups fail within 10 years. Growing a startup is a long-term mission to reach your vision. A vision of a brighter future for everyone, not just yourself.

Innovators don’t realize this. With the rise of NFTs and it’s unregulated nature, anyone can be a web3 founder.

The thing is, people forget that building a startup is time intensive and mentally consuming.

So if you genuinely want to build in the space, remember: You’re in it for the long haul and it definitely won’t be easy.

Let’s get started 👇

𝗥𝗲𝗰𝗼𝗴𝗻𝗶𝘇𝗲 𝗮 𝗻𝗶𝗰𝗵𝗲 𝗻𝗲𝗲𝗱

In the consumer journey, the individual begins by recognizing a need.

Our needs are constantly evolving, but for the most part, we’re met with five categories:

Look within these categories first, then find an ongoing problem for a niche target audience.

Niche is the key word here. The smaller, the better. Why?

All are biggest and most important needs are already fulfilled by conglomerates and giants.

Facebook fulfills our online belonging needs. If you decide to build the next big social media platform, you will fail.

These companies have the capital to push you out from the market with ease, like flicking a fly off their shoulder. It’s nothing to them.

Entering a niche market allows you to take more market share, and arm you with enough funding to penetrate the entire market.

So don’t think big, think small. Tackle the tangible and intangible needs, not the aspirational. It’s just too broad for a small startup.

𝗗𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗹𝗼𝗽 𝗮 𝘃𝗮𝗹𝘂𝗲 𝗳𝗿𝗮𝗺𝗲𝘄𝗼𝗿𝗸

Find a need for your target audience, and provide value by fulfilling that need.

You can do this by drawing up a value framework oriented toward societal impact, and not just monetary goals.

The money will trickle in if people see profits aren’t the driving force for your mission.

A go-to for creating this framework includes a Unique Value Proposition. What will you and your team do really well? What are your customer’s needs? What is your competition doing well?

Surface insights from the opportunities presented in the market environment and your team’s strengths.

Since we’re on the subject of building a team…

𝗕𝘂𝗶𝗹𝗱 𝗮 𝘀𝘂𝗽𝗲𝗿𝘀𝘁𝗮𝗿 𝘁𝗲𝗮𝗺

23% of startups fail because the team doesn’t produce results.

How do you avoid this?

Build a principled founding team with a mission to succeed in the long-term.

@neilpatel’s guide is a great starting point for first-time founders.

I’ll summarize the most pertinent points down below 👇

  • Evaluate your skillset. Focus only on what your good at. If you aren’t cut out as a leader, then find someone else to lead.
  • Hire action-takers who can manage the functions of the business. In the web3 space, the bare minimum is a community manager and a lead developer. I call this “outsourcing your weaknesses.”
  • Promote diversity. Diversity leads to new perspectives, and new perspectives lead to new ideas for your business.
  • Hire the individual who may be lacking a hard skill, but excels with their personality. You want people who aren’t afraid of desk critiques and expressing their ideas.
  • Hire talent with aligned interests. If your team is only in it for the cheque, your project won’t last.

𝗙𝗼𝗿𝗺 𝗮 𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗻 𝘀𝘁𝗮𝗿𝘁𝘂𝗽

The conventional web2 approach opts for a full-scale business plan by presenting a problem and providing a solution. Business plans are static and long-term.

The issue with BPs is that they cannot be changed.

A lean startup differs from a full-scale business plan. It outlines the startup’s short-term goals and steps to reach them.

But just like a BP, it still identifies a problem and outlines a solution. It provides credible value for the user.

The main differentiation stems for it’s malleability. The lean startup is agile, thus changing at the drop of a dime.

You, as a founder, have the ability to refine your business according to community feedback, without wasting resources.

So how do you form one in web3?

Curate your MVC

Say no to the Minimal Viable Product process.

It’s outdated for web3, as the consumer has been promoted to an owner. They’re not just buying a product anymore, they’re investing in a like-minded community.

19/ I wrote an entire article on how to curate a Minimal Viable Community.

Your MVC is an asset. Once you’ve reached a small group of individuals who extend your values and goals as a founding team, you’re set to succeed.

Scale your community

Curating the MVC can be tricky, but it isn’t even the hardest part of your startup’s journey.

Scaling it is where most web3 projects fail. As you add to the startup’s building blocks and expand your outreach, you’ll get more traction.

More eyes on your project leads to sprawled interest. You want to implement scalable systems that are restrictive, yet open to the right people.

@theforge_land is a “token-gated community”. To enter, you need two NFTs: One to apply to the community, and one for access.

To get the first NFT, you need to either:

  • Get an invite from a member who believes you’ll fit right in with the community
  • Buy the NFT on OS
  • Bring value in an innovative manner

To get the lifetime access NFT, members need to vote you in, then you must complete value-drive quests receive access.

Pretty ingenious if you ask me. Keeps the interests aligned within your community, while scaling it to unprecedented heights.

Distribute power to your shareholders (DAO)

The reason why you shouldn’t develop a long-term BP is because we’re aiming for a decentralized future with web3.

If you create a BP without the investor’s input, you’re just reverting to web2.

And with the onset of DAOs, investors have (almost) complete control as the organizational hierarchy is flattened.

Investors are the decision makers — once you scale, you should begin to distribute power to your community.

You are paving the way for your strong community of investors to democratize the business you’ve started.

You are giving them the power to plan the long-term vision.

You are supplying the talent to manifest the DAO’s goals.

You are the face of the DAO.


  1. Recognize a niche need
  2. Create a value framework
  3. Build a founding team
  4. Establish the lean startup
  5. Curate your MVC
  6. Scale your community
  7. Distribute power to your shareholders (DAO)

Follow me @wholelottajuju if you enjoyed the content!

Originally published on my Twitter account and republished on Medium.

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