12Retention Build a Moat

Marketers battle the forces of indifference, skepticism, and inertia at every stage of the marketing funnel until they reach retention. Retention is the step when the potential user has already converted to becoming an actual user. The goal of retention is defense: to keep the user coming back for more and avoid losing them to a competing product. At this point inertia actually works in a project's favor. Just as in Newtonian physics, when an object in motion stays in motion, the user of a product will continue using it, so long as they continue having the same problem and the product continues to offer the best solution to their problem. A few of the best mechanisms to retain users are having a sticky product, offering incentives, and building a reputation for keeping promises to the community and delivering against a road map.

A sticky product is defined as one to which users are likely to return and continue using and engaging on a regular basis. The opposite of a sticky product—let's call it a slippery product—either solves the user's problem after a limited number of uses and sends them on their way, or lacks a built‐in mechanism to motivate a user to return. A Web3 wallet such as MetaMask is an example of a sticky product, because moving all of one's tokens into a new wallet causes friction, and users must be motivated in order to overcome friction. The more motivated they are and the less friction required for a user to switch products, the more ...

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