ICO PR: How to Conduct a ICO Advertising Campaign in the Media

22 mins read
ICO PR: How to Conduct a Pre-ICO Advertising Campaign in the Media

ICO PR. Successful promotion of the website connected with electronic money is directly related to information. To spread the word about cryptocurrency and the forthcoming ICO, you have to involve as many information distribution channels as possible. One of them is the mass media. Moreover, it is necessary to be published both in Russian and in foreign editions. Articles written by professionals will interest the solvent audience. Publications on subjects of interest to the crypto community in high-profile mass media will attract clients.

Customers of PRNEWS.io often announce the pre-sale of their tokens in the media. We analyzed several successful pre-ICO and ICO launches and highlighted the main trends.

Why companies launch an ICO

The rapid growth of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and cryptocurrencies, in general, has spurred interest in the cryptocurrency market and started the search for new business opportunities. To attract investors, companies sell a fixed volume of their cryptocurrency. The method was named ICO (Initial Coin Offering) by analogy with the Initial Public Offering of stocks (IPO).

An ICO can be considered an analog of an IPO, with the only difference being that the initial offering of coins or tokens does not impose obligations on the parties and does not imply the conclusion of contracts. In parallel with the increase in the number of ICOs, the cost of the projects is also increasing. More and more companies are appearing that could attract hundreds of millions of dollars from the preliminary sale of their tokens.

The launch of an ICO will not achieve anything without the dissemination of information about the project. The most effective way to notify the audience quickly is through publications in the media. We studied our clients’ campaigns for launching ICOs and we identified several key factors that affect the effectiveness of PR campaigns in the media.

When to advertise an ICO in the media

There is no well-established timetable for the start of a PR campaign for an ICO. Some wait for at least a month between the first publication and the start of the pre-sale of tokens, while others begin to spread information about the launch of the ICO during the campaign.

Everything depends on potential investors:

  • What they know about the company that issues tokens?
  • How enthusiastic they are about the new cryptocurrency?
  • What relation do they have to the industry in which the initiator of the ICO is working?

If a company issues a limited number of tokens and the goal of the project is to attract people who are interested in the development of the industry and can influence this process, companies release a limited number of coins. The main share of such a cryptocurrency is distributed among employees, and the cost of entry for investors is considerable. It makes no sense to disseminate information about such ICOs in the national mass media. Press releases, as a rule, appear in industry publications and on the pages of websites dedicated to cryptocurrencies. The number of publications ranges from three to ten. Such a PR campaign can be launched a couple of weeks before the ICO, but sometimes even after the preliminary sale of the tokens.

Projects that want to make their products large-scale and maximally promote the topic of cryptocurrencies—cryptocurrency exchanges, Forex brokers—are seeking to reach a large audience. They choose to publish in popular cryptocurrency media outlets, national publications, and IT-focused websites. The threshold of access to the ICO for such companies is low – starting from a few dollars. This allows anyone to become an investor, regardless of how much they have in their bank account. Therefore, companies speak about their ICO to a large number of users.

A massive scale requires good PR; therefore, publications about such ICOs appear one or two months before the start of the sale, on the pages of several dozen publications—from specialized ones, writing about cryptocurrencies, to national news media.

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How often articles about the ICO should be published

This indicator depends on the scale of the company and the audience coverage. Global PR campaigns can include dozens of publications, starting two months before the launch of the ICO and ending after its launch.

How the topic of the sites influences the effectiveness of the PR campaign

The majority of press releases about the launch of an ICO are published in the media that writes about cryptocurrency. Users who are searching for information about electronic money or want to invest in one of the promising projects will first of all search for information on specialized sites. Global information platforms are good for projects designed for the largest mass audience.

PRNEWS.io will help you choose a list of sites and place the necessary number of press releases or articles – and, moreover, do so without going over your budget.

How can to build a relevant media list for a cryptocurrency/ICO PR campaign?

There are some basic guidelines, but blockchain projects in general have become quite oversaturated and so you will need to go above and beyond if you do not plan to hire a PR firm.

The first thing to do before creating a list is to create an editorial Calendar with a variety of angles and stories that you plan to tell and when you plan to tell them. I can write pages about story creation but will spare you.

Identify your audiences across a range of focal points. The below should be as fleshed out as possible. You need to find media across a variety of different stories and angles.

  • The specific niche/sector/industry your project works within
  • The general tech and startup media community
  • Unique company elements such as location.
  • Journalists that have covered similar projects or even competitors
  • Specific storylines you have already created.

A media database will make life simple and is what most professional communicators use. If you do not have a media database (PRNEWS.IO) finding journalists can be tricky and slow. That said it is more than doable. Just search out the publications and articles that are in the focus areas of the above categories you built out. You can find recent articles or articles about competitors using a google search, you can look directly into publishers of interest and simply find the writers/producers/editors. From there search the site for email addresses.

Treat it with respect and treat journalists with respect. Share only the most compelling of stories with perfectly targeted media audiences. They get hit by hundreds of shotgun pitches every single day. You can segregate yourself by building relationships and targeting the right story for the right media members.

PRNEWS.IO exists to make it easier for you to find sites to post your news. Just open the catalog, use the filters and select the list of ideal media outlets.

Industry Experts about ICO PR

Joshua Wood, CEO, and founder of Bloc

Joshua Wood, CEO, and founder of Bloc

There are a few things to keep in mind when doing PR for an ICO:

Make sure your website and white paper are well-written and professional-looking. Potential investors will be looking at these documents closely to determine whether or not to invest in your ICO.

Generate a lot of hype on social media by creating interesting and engaging content related to your ICO. Make sure to target the right audience (cryptocurrency enthusiasts, early adopters, etc.) with your marketing efforts.

Get involved with the cryptocurrency community and participate in relevant discussions online. This will help increase awareness of your ICO and attract potential investors.

Make use of bounty programs to reward people for promoting your ICO.

Sudhir Khatwani, Founder of The Money Mongers, a crypto media company

Sudhir Khatwani, Founder of The Money Mongers, a crypto media company

Running an Airdrop campaign is one of the best ways to promote an ICO. But there is more to it. To launch your ICO campaign, you again have to focus on airdrop campaign marketing, which can be done through Twitter, Reddit, and other popular social media networks.

Airdrops campaigns involve encouraging users to learn about your crypto project and tell the world what your crypto is offering.

However, since most AirDrop campaigns turned out to be fake and scammy, there is always a risk of people not being interested in your project.

In that case, you can partner up with an exchange or other crypto business to build the initial launch.

Alex Wang, co-founder, and CEO of Ember Fund, a leading crypto investment management app

Alex Wang, co-founder, and CEO of Ember Fund, a leading crypto investment management app

Create a charity program or action. The media loves charitable initiatives and will periodically publish information about them. This does not necessarily imply a financial outlay. Your employees can volunteer or provide organizational support.

Many ICO projects forget that honesty is the best policy. Find ways to benefit the community. One way to gain the attention of potential investors is to partner with someone doing something admirable for society and supporting a worthy cause.

Placement of press releases on ICO topics

Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is defined as the initial distribution of tokens (coins). Such an exchange allows you to sell coins of a digital sample for bitcoins and other types of crypto-currencies, or fi-money funds among existing investors. Acquired tokens can be used on the online platform of the project, paying for any services or putting them on the marketplace for sale. Very often you can find the term “crowdsale” instead of ICO.

Most domestic and foreign projects need additional funding. Therefore, they start issuing their own tokens to exchange for popular virtual money or fiat currencies (euro, US dollars). Often, this practice is possible in the early stages of the development of the Internet project (until the formation of a full and independent infrastructure). All funds raised in this way will be spent on the implementation of the marketing strategy or go to a development fund that supports the development of the project in the future.

Many representatives of business are interested in the legality of such transactions and the stock exchange as a whole. To date, they cannot be attributed to legal or clandestine methods of investment. No world state can determine the legal status of crowd sale, the conditions that the organizations conducting the auction must comply with, nor the rules for their conduct. Thus, the legal relationship between the parties when carrying out the crowdsales is also impossible to determine.

Comparison of ICO and IPO

Large organizations release their initial securities on exchanges called Initial Public Offering. Most organized crowdsales have similar set-ups:

  • Investors are entitled to a part of the firm’s income in the form of cryptographic coins;
  • Bidding is organized to implement a startup or an idea, which is very similar to crowdfunding.

It is mandatory to the organization of an IPO to be regulated and controlled at the legislative level. For example, in the United States of America, a firm must be registered as a joint stock company and fixed by the Securities Commission for the official placement of shares. These formalities allow the investor to obtain some guarantees before commencing financing.

Crowdsale is considered to be the simplest method of attracting additional financing but does not provide any guarantees or insurance.

What is the benefits for ICO depositors?

Most financial partners, buying tokens, rely on:

  • the sale of coins in the future at an inflated price;
  • the use of coins to cover the costs of some services.

Below, PRNEWS experts prepared information on successful ICO stock exchanges for you. We hope that this information will allow you to make the right decision.

The success of trading is calculated by measuring the volume of collected funds. Dry statistics show that leadership got the project “Bancor”, which gathered in the beginning of summer 2017, more than 396 thousand ETH for three hours. Also, it is worth paying attention to one more rapid crowdsales company of the new browser “Brave”, which in less than a minute reached the goal of $35 million.

How PRNEWS.IO can be useful to your company?

The modern platform PRNEWS.io is created to facilitate the process of popularization of your company, brand, service and more. We are happy to help you strengthen the advertising campaign, which will attract even more interested people to you. Publications in world media and high-quality content, which our specialists are ready to create in different languages, will allow you to bring your business to the world level. Contact our consultants now for answers to all your questions.

7 Websites for ICO Campaign Promotion

Hundreds of popular cryptocurrency sites can become excellent sources of content distribution. We collected the best websites about cryptocurrencies from 23 countries for you.


  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 200 000 readers

Most CoinJournal.net readers are residents of the USA and Europe. The platform publishes news concerning the cryptocurrency industry and is famous for journalistic honesty. Here you can find only verified information and credible facts. It is possible to post a press release about new currency on ICO within five days.

The Merkle

  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 2.3 million readers

The Merkle has been creating engaging educational content and giving the world essential finance, technology, cryptocurrencies, and information news security since 2014. The most famous ICO projects start here. People promote not only the primary offer of tokens; the platform is popular among all the people who want to sell something hi-tech.


  • Country: Russia
  • Publication language: Russian
  • Coverage: 1,4 million readers

CoinSpot.io — the largest RuNet resource for digital currencies, financial technical trends, and financial innovations. Here you can read about technologies, startups, and personalities that form the image of the financial world. ICO calendar which helps to look at the current, complete, and forthcoming campaigns is also working on the website.

The Bitcoin News

  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 50 000 readers

The primary audience of the TheBitcoinNews.com platform is residents of the USA, China, Brazil, and Thailand. Here you can find all relevant news about Bitcoin and Etherium; learn about new ICO, and read expert opinions. An educational section on the site helps one understand all the nuances of cryptocurrencies. Subscribers will also see the text published on the website — more than 30 thousand people subscribe to their mailing list.


  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 450 000 readers

CoinSpeaker — one of the most influential sources of news to everyone is engaged in financial technology, the blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and the Internet of things. The website is popular in the USA, Great Britain, Japan, Germany, and Russia. There is an ICO calendar available to help find all necessary information on the forthcoming, current, and complete sales of tokens.

Coin Idol

  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 150 000 readers

Coinidol.com is not just a source of the latest news and reviews about advanced financial technologies and the world economy, but also one of its primogenitors. Some enthusiasts love fintech, cryptocurrency markets, decentralized economy, policy, and blockchain technology on the CoinIdol team. They publish all paid materials in the news section, and as a bonus, the editorial office of the website will prepare an animated illustration of the text.

The CoinTelegraph

  • Country: USA
  • Publication language: English
  • Coverage: 10 million readers

Cointelegraph is presented in several countries at the same time — the USA, Slovenia, Serbia, Spain, Japan, and Brazil. Language versions, attendance, and content of the website are different depending on the geographical binding of the site. Cointelegraph was founded in 2013. In 4 years the platform became the recognized leader in the market for cryptocurrency information.


One well-written post on one of these platforms can attract a considerable number of visitors. You do not need to use all your budget for the publication on one website. It will be more useful to post several texts on different resources to capture readers from several categories at once. Choose the audience, publication language, and coverage of readers and tell the world about the crypto—business.

You can find even more websites about cryptocurrencies in our mass media catalog.

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ICO PR: How to Conduct a Pre-ICO Advertising Campaign in the Media

Alex Nigmatulin

Chief Marketing Officer - PRNEWS.IO. Coordinating sales and marketing for more than 10 years (with interruptions for product design, getting the team together and partner management).

I went along with B2Blogger | PRNEWS.IO from the blog with press releases to the global marketplace of sponsored posts and native ads.

Believes that only useful advertising will survive.

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