There are now more than 17,000 cryptocurrencies in existence, and in fact, the market is adding almost 1,000 new ones every month! Yet despite this massive growth, only a small number of them really matter – roughly 20 cryptocurrencies make up 90% of the total market.
Although most cryptos have little value and unclear potential, things can change quickly, which is why it pays for association professionals to understand the landscape.
In general, cryptocurrencies can be grouped by their utility. That basically means, “What is it for?”
Because each cryptocurrency has its own technology and uses, the specific appeal to buyers stems from the future vision of how the space could develop. In business terms, we’d say that every cryptocurrency presents a different value proposition, which is an important distinction that many people do not understand.
A cryptocurrency’s total value in the market is called its “market capitalization.” Using that as our guide, let’s review them in their order of relevance.
The two big names in cryptocurrency are Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Both have a growing track record of success, with steadily increasing valuation over time. In contrast, most of the lesser-known cryptos are considered more speculative and thus more volatile.
The 10 cryptocurrencies everyone should know include:
Cryptocurrencies and professional associations are both growing in prominence across the business landscape. Crypto is now becoming a central feature of several emerging business models. It is also directly influencing the world of nonprofits in its enabling of charitable giving.
Thus, the two main areas Association professionals should be closely watching are crypto philanthropy and creator coins.
Crypto philanthropy is charitable giving that supports causes with cryptocurrency instead of cash or other assets. Just as investing in cryptocurrencies has gained popularity, so has the practice of donating to charities with crypto.
In the U.S., citizens don’t pay capital gains taxes on property assets (e.g., crypto, stocks) donated to a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit. Organizations and individuals leverage this to avoid the taxing of their most appreciated assets, and for many, this is their crypto. In recent years, annual crypto donation volume has risen sharply, impacting a broad number of industries.
Creator coins are a crypto-based social currency, which essentially allows fans to invest in creators' success. Creators can launch their personal tokens representing a piece of their digital brand. These coins are issued by an individual or a business and share the same characteristics as money, in that they serve as a medium of exchange.
Because associations and membership have such a deep-rooted connection, considering creator coins as an exchange means for educational content and other membership benefits can be a powerful use case for crypto. As such, a growing number of associations and professionals are engaging with this new dynamic of value transfer.
There are many cryptocurrencies with many different uses.
In time, a dominant few will eventually emerge to become the established marketplace. These prevailing cryptocurrencies will ultimately be determined by their utility.
As this unfolds, their usage in emerging business models and charity will continue growing sharply. Obviously, the world of digital currency is still evolving. It appears that will remain the case for the foreseeable future.
Marc spent 27 years as a sales leader on Wall Street's algorithmic/A.I. trading desks in New York City. He is founder and CEO of a content strategy firm, Anvictus, which serves FinTech and Blockchain scale-ups. Marc has published several hundred articles and videos on sales strategy through content. His work has been featured in media such as Bloomberg, Traders Magazine, CNBC and various business podcasts.
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