Community is at the heart of web3. With its promise of a user-owned internet, web3 emphasizes community ownership and governance of tokens. However, as Li Jin from Variant Fund aptly put
put, “merely giving users tokens isn’t enough; users need to feel like owners in order to be aligned with the success of those networks, contribute to their growth, and stay engaged long-term.”
Creating a sense of belonging within your community is crucial. It involves establishing a strong collective identity, building a social presence, and effectively telling the story of what you’re building. Infuse your community with contagious optimism. Web3 communities love creativity, so utilize creativity in building your brand, messaging and memes.
Recently, one of the most creative strategies for web3 community building has been the use of domain names. Starting with Ethereum Foundation’s ENS (.eth), domain names have become an exciting way to signify community affinity, boost project awareness, acquire new users, and reward existing ones. They make community members feel a strong sense of belonging, and the community loves to showcase them everywhere.
At Masa, we popularized the concept of soulbond domain names (“soulnames”) on various blockchains. Examples include .soul for the Masa community on the Ethereum Blockchain, 335,000+ .celo names minted in 60 days on the Celo Blockchain, and 250,000+ .base names minted in 30 days on the Base Blockchain. Through Masa GrowthPad, any community can now issue their unique community domain name.
We have already seen the success stories with gaming, metaverse, NFT and news projects issuing community domain names. If you’re curious to explore this strategy, here are some steps to build a sense of community belonging through domain names.
1. Domain Names as Foundations for Community Collective identity in Web3:
Web3 users, like people in general, have deeply rooted psychological behaviors that bind them to a community. They seek to express this affiliation in web3 through a pseudonymous persona that reflects their core values and beliefs.
A soulname is a domain name for a “soul” in web3. These human-readable pseudonymous usernames or handles resolve to a user’s wallet, containing the soulname. Following ERC-721, soulnames are simple to mint and can be a combination of letters, numbers, and/or emojis, representing a person’s persona and community affiliation.
2. Community Affiliations and the Role of Domain Names:
Community affiliations are established by appending a top-level domain suffix to usernames: : username.suffix. For example, Masa’s .soul domain name holders are affiliated with the Masa community and are members of Masa Societies. Celo’s .celo domain represents an affiliation to the Celo community and its values, allowing individuals to express their persona through their username.
3. The Impact of Soulname Launch and Their Utilities in Web3:
A soulname launch campaign can generate significant momentum and hype for a community. Additionally, soulnames can be natively embedded within apps such as web3 games or NFT platforms, serving as a viable source of revenue. They can also be traded on platforms like OpenSea, providing secondary market value to holders.
For example, .celo soulnames — a collaboration between Masa and the Celo Foundation — brought more than 58,000 global users to the Celo blockchain, many of whom are global users who are on Celo for the first time.
Soulnames can be easily integrated into wallets, dApps, games, metaverses, and NFTs, functioning as personalized identifiers and experience handles. They can also be resolved to addresses in wallets for making payments to other individuals without sharing a 42-character hexadecimal address with the sender.
For example, recently Masa co-hosted a mini-hackathon
mini-hackathonwith Celo’s developer relations team. Within a week, over 128 projects registered to resolve .celo soulnames into their dApps, wallets, and communities.
The Proof: Pre-Launch Metaverse Arcomia Sold 10,000+ .arcomia Soulnames in 10 Days Using Masa GrowthPad
Through working with projects across all verticals, we found that L1/L2 blockchains, games and metaverses, and NFT projects are most eager to capitalize on the community domain name strategy.
Arcomiais an exciting pre-launch next-gen metaverse game on Polygon. It is building an immersive metaverse experience, where users can play to earn tokens, explore an open world, own land plots, build their in-game identity and be rewarded for their achievements.
After meeting Masa at a web3 community event, Arcomia’s co-founder immediately saw the appeal of using soulbound tokens as non-transferrable identifiers in the metaverse game. Arcomia’s goal was to establish their user base, by on-boarding and establishing their unique gamer identity. A user’s Arcomian avatar will serve as their dynamic identity, and utilize Masa SBTs to enable the representation of assets, achievements, rewards, and identity data within the Arcomia Metaverse.
To start, we wanted to help Arcomia build its first cohort of gamers and community members before its official launch. Together, we launched .arcomia soulnames. Read the announcement.
Read the announcement.
How .arcomia Soulname Campaign Works
Step 1: Users visit Masa’s SBT App and connect their Metamask wallet-
Step 2: Users visit the Arcomia Landing Page, and create an account.
Step 3: Users search for their desired unique soulname
Step 4: Users mint their soulnames on Polygon
11,611 .arcomia soulnames minted by 8,966 addresses in 20 days. These users have created accounts, minted their .arcomia identity, and are ready for the launch of the metaverse.
These soulname can be used to offer token-gated rewards and perks. Arcomia designed a limited edition Masa astronaut giveaway for all SBT holders. Arcomia was able to read the SBTs in all of our users’ wallets, to give them the opportunity to mint a free custom metaverse avatar NFT. So far, 5,871Masa community members have claimed their lovely limited edition astronauts.
Community domain names can help create an environment that enables anyone who joins to not only feel a sense of ownership, but also a part of a collective identity. If you’re creative enough, your community domain names can even go viral.
At Masa, we are collaborating with forward-looking communities on BNB, Polygon, Celo, Base, and Ethereum to launch community domain names. If you’re interested, learn more and apply to join the Masa GrowthPad
Masa GrowthPad. Together, we can foster a strong sense of belonging in web3 communities.
Be a part of the Masa Community 🌽