Proposal to Grow the Hive Ecosystem With the Everything App and One-Click Onboarding

avatar of @leofinance
20 min read

About LeoFinance

LeoFinance was created in July 2019 (we just had our 4th anniversary) as an individual community on Hive. The idea was to give crypto and finance enthusiasts on Hive a place to discuss anything related to these topics and earn $LEO:$0.07 in the process. A few months later and after getting some adoption, we launched our own condenser-forked frontend, specific to Finance, Crypto, Economics, and any topic related to money.

A few months later, we decided to self-fund the building of a new UI completely from scratch. We built the UI under our mission statement of Democratizing knowledge and access to finance through Web3... On the only blockchain that made sense, Hive.

Let's fast forward a couple of years and hundreds of thousands of dollars in self-funded development across our 12+ applications built on and around Hive to August 2022.

Remember Project Blank?

The vision of LeoFinance evolved. We talked about and hyped Project Blank for a long time. Our mission is to onboard the masses to Hive through LeoFinance and we realized that our platform was too niche to make that happen. Not only was it too niche in the sense of content subject (finance only) but it also was too niche in the content type. We needed to go beyond long-form articles only.

LeoFinance is now on a 10-year, self-funded development runway looking to go mainstream by becoming The Everything App, with our Flagship feature: Threads - Microblogging on the Hive blockchain. By this point and up until December 2022, LeoFinance has been the only frontend on Hive that hasn't decreased in monthly active users. We've worked incredibly hard to both maintain our user base throughout the bear market and simultaneously aim to grow it.

On Being Self-Funded

Being Self-Funded - and this is Khal speaking, by the way - has been extremely important to me because of many reasons. The main reason is not wanting to be a net-outflow for the Hive ecosystem. I want LeoFinance to be a net inflow for Hive - that is, bring in more outside capital, users, and attention than we ask for in return.

  • Bootstrapping is better

  • Answering to people

  • Being undeserving

These among other reasons are why LeoFinance has never sought outside funding for development. On top of the simple fact that we didn't need it for development. The development expenses of LeoFinance over the past 4 years amounts to more than $1,000,000 and that number continues to increase with each passing year.

That being said, our runway extends well into the next decade of development. I have long said that LeoFinance is not only a passion project, but a project that aims to build a real, economically viable business model. We aim to do this in many different ways. Among them, bringing outside capital into the Hive ecosystem.

Everyone knows that Hive needs money to flow INTO the system. There are plenty of ways that money flows out of Hive, but finding the inflows has always been a passionate point for me.

Ad revenue has started to grow into a behemoth for LeoFinance. Since the full launch of Threads, we have put ourselves on a really interesting trajectory to bring in tens of thousands of dollars per month into our ecosystem, and by effect, into the Hive ecosystem by enriching the Hivers who use

May 2023 - Project Blank Finally Isn't... Blank

In May 2023, we launched our new User Interface. With each passing day, we are adding new features and fixes to build the ultimate social media experience. And it ALL lives on the Hive blockchain database.

The Everything App on Hive.

Currently Available on the LeoFinance UI

Killer dApps, Rolled into One Seamless Interface:

Also Built by Leo:

  • Advertisement model that benefits the community: LeoAds Protocol Which Redistributes Ad Revenue to Users

  • AI integration to on-chain activities: News2Threads Bot

  • Decentralized curation with 10+ curators:

  • LeoAuth internal login protocol

  • LeoInfra - Twitter and Goggle Hive Lite Account Protocol

  • LeoCache - A Second-Layer Caching mechanism that enables the Threads indexing backend as well as speedy activities on the UI

  • LeoMobile - mobile app on IOS and Android

  • - Multi Token Bridge - bLEO, pLEO, wLEO, bHBD, bHIVE, pHBD, pHIVE

  • - a DeFi app on the BSC Blockchain aimed at bringing Hive/HBD/LEO Liquidity to the multi-token bridge

  • - a DeFi app on the Polygon Blockchain aimed at bringing Hive/HBD/LEO Liquidity to the multi-token bridge

  • - a Hive stats tracking app utilized by thousands of Hivers per month

  • Hive Wallet 2.0 on with many features including DeFi integration coming

  • - Our own Hive-Engine UI

  • - Our own LEO POWER Leasing app

  • @leofinance - Hive Witness

  • LeoTower - A Custom JSON Watchtower backend for Polls now and eventually, future features we're bringing to the chain that specifically use JSON-enabled functionalities

Under Development

  • LeoNode - a highly scalable full-node for the Hive blockchain. Needed especially to scale Threads as it is resource intensive

  • Twitter Export protocol for a one-click button to export a Twitter account's historical content to the Hive blockchain and store them as Threads (key to onboarding Twitter users to a blockchain alternative, using Hive)

  • Hive Resource Credit Dynamic pool (LeoFinance has accumulated a lot of HIVE Power across various accounts and is building a dynamic pool to delegate RCs to all users as needed)

  • On-chain referral system

  • Engage-to-Mint (no sales) NFTs with in-app use cases and as a tool for gamification

  • Full-stack customization of Communities (essentially adding a second-layer element to the existing Hive Communities Protocol)

  • Subscription model as a Substack alternative

  • Evergreen content with a never-ending monetization model - using LeoAds protocol to reward Hive content beyond the 7-day window with Ad checks based on traffic generated

  • In-app Engagement Leaderboards to encourage more on-chain activity (i.e. Threads, Comments, Posts, Replies)

  • LeoShorts - Short, temporary videos as an alternative to TikTok/IG stories, integrating with 3Speak

  • Short form videos embedded to the Microblogging feature, again integrating with 3Speak

  • Quiz and Forms as an alternative to Google Forms

Our Vision for The Everything App on Hive is definitive and permanent, and we have a 10-year roadmap ahead of us. This vision has a self-funded development runway for expenses that will allow us to keep building and growing, no matter what.

Our mission has long been to grow the Hive ecosystem but we want to do it right. We want to bring in both capital and users from the outside into the Hive blockchain.

We didn't want to and still never intend to ask for funds to develop our project's technology. Especially considering that most of our frontend technology is not open source. We don't believe in asking Hive as an ecosystem to pay for our technical developments or to pay the salaries of our team of developers, marketers, designers and administrators.

Grow the Size of the Hive Pie Rather Than Take a Bigger Slice

  • Since our new User Interface launch, we've grown from 500 monthly active Users to 1,300 monthly active users

  • Since our new Tokenomics model and the deployment of the Advertisement Revenue model, our native token ($LEO:$0.07) has increased both in # of unique holders and in average price by almost 3x

Now that Threads is officially live, we are looking to grow this existing user base by more than 3x by December 2023 and finish the year with 5,000 Monthly Active users. For added context, Hive as a whole blockchain has about 11,000 Monthly Active users (blogging/commenting).

To achieve this, we are not just looking inward to the Hive blockchain. That would mean we grow from the 10% share of total Hive social users we currently have to 50% of Hive social users. While we do expect more growth within Hive from that 10%, we are more-so looking outward. To people who are not currently a part of the 11,000 monthly active social users on Hive.

We are mostly focused on attracting users from the outside of Hive. Our philosophy at LeoFinance is to grow the size of the pie, rather than get a bigger slice of the existing one.

Since March 2023, we've had more than 20 meetings with existing and thriving Crypto Projects from outside of the Hive Ecosystem, and so far we've successfully partnered with three of them to work in collaborative marketing efforts. We are working to have 10 thriving Crypto Companies as official partners by the end of 2023.

As our partners, we ask them to start publishing their Long-Form (think, Medium developer updates) project/development updates on the Hive blockchain. We also ask them to bring their users to our interface to interact with their development updates (comment) and also post Threads using their hashtag to gain more awareness.

We leverage our existing user base to show them the power of Hive by having our users comment on their dev updates, interact with their community's threads, and more. The power of Hive is one that is lacking on nearly EVERY OTHER platform out there - especially in the crypto space - that power is in the Hive community. This community is incredibly engaged, thoughtful and intelligent. By focusing the attention on these projects’ announcements, they will go from getting 0-2 comments on their Medium articles to getting 50-100+ on their Hive articles from the Hive community.

The power in that is something they will only recognize once they see it first hand.

Our Keywords are sustainable and continuous growth by capturing the existing Cryptospace user base, and converting the web2 user base by offering an array of alternatives to standalone web2 apps like Reddit, Medium, Twitter, Substack, Bitcointalk, etc.

Marketing and Promotion

Hive's power is in providing dApps the backend infrastructure and database to build on top of. The Hive layer 0 is the community, the layer 1 is the tech stack that can enable layer 2 development - like us.

From that point, it is up to us - the Layer 2 dApps - to not only build on Layer 1, but actually market ourselves, promote adoption and make onboarding through our applications as easy as possible.

This, among many reasons, is why you see the Hive Lite Account Protocol we built (called LeoInfra) as a staple in our onboarding process. We've made it as easy as 30 seconds to create a Hive account and make your first Thread/Post on the Hive blockchain. We encrypt the keys to the Hive account and allow users to download them later, once we've successfully retained them as a user and given them a reason to keep coming back.

It is not Hive itself that will drive adoption to the ecosystem, but the standalone dApps, business owners and developers who will spearhead any potential mainstream adoption.

The value that Hive captures is both in network effect from the increased user base as well as from resource credit utilization from dApps like us - who aim to grow our user bases to the point where we need to continually acquire more HIVE POWER to ensure our users never run out of RCs to interact with and store data on the Hive blockchain.

The Everything App - DHF Proposal

This proposal covers 7 different aspects that we will focus on:

  1. The Everything App Development

  2. Traditional Marketing

  3. Influencer Marketing

  4. Collaboration Marketing

  5. Guerilla Marketing

  6. Adoption Campaigns

  7. Organic Growth by TEA

1. The Everything App Development

As we mentioned above, since LeoFinance's inception, we have been fully self-funded and are adamant about remaining that way when it comes to our technology. We believe in building a sustainable, viable business and to NOT take away from the Hive ecosystem but rather, to bring capital and users into the Hive ecosystem.

The LeoVerse is an expensive project to run, but our vision extends far beyond what is possible today. Onboarding 5,000 MAUs is our goal in 2023 but what lies in 2033 and beyond is where our heads are at. We're looking to bring hundreds of thousands and eventually, millions of people to Hive through the LeoFinance Everything App.

Does that seem like a lofty dream to you? Does it sound almost unachievable? If you've been on this blockchain for a while, you probably think it's impossible to reach these goals. I've talked to a lot of people who think that way. This is understandable but I don’t share their pessimistic outlook. They are the same people who said Project Blank was an impossible vision to achieve and that LEO would die a few months after it was launched.

We strive to build an app that is not only as good as Web2 apps in terms of features and functionalities, but that it is actually BETTER than Web2 apps. This is extremely achievable. It's not easy, but I will - and our team will - be around for the next 10+ years and we will make it happen. We don't ever give up.

We strongly believe in bringing value to HIVE and not taking away from it. This is why we are asking for a whopping $0 in funding from the DHF for the development of The Everything App.

Yes, $0.

We will continue to self-fund the technological development and innovation for,,,, and any other apps we build under our Everything App umbrella for the next 10 years and beyond. That's how we roll.

A Few Key Things Before We Get into Actual Budgets

Along the same lines where we believe that the DHF shouldn’t fund our own technology development, we also believe we shouldn’t ask the DHF to fund our employee payroll.

That's why all of the budgets and details below will show us asking for only the actual placements / marketing itself to be funded. The budget for our team’s time spent researching, activating, collaborating, partnering, etc., will come out of our own personal budget for payroll expenses.

Another key thing to note, and we'll reiterate this at the end: LeoFinance will 100% reimburse the DHF if we don't hit our broad deliverables. That is, if our marketing efforts are unsuccessful to actually onboard real human beings into getting a Hive account, we will refund our entire proposal budget to the DHF.

We believe that any DHF proposal has to provide clear and measurable goals. We want you to only fund this proposal if you believe that our goals are clear and measurable, and if we don’t live up to them, we will give all the marketing money back. A risk-free investment for Hive to gain itself more users. If it doesn't, it costs $0 to Hive.

Our focus is to make the pie bigger. We're not here for money, we're not here to get paid, we're here to grow the Hive ecosystem through our dApp.

2. Traditional Marketing

We believe there are two big reasons Hive has not yet been mass adopted as a Web3 Social Media platform

  1. The social media aspect has lacked usability

  2. Nobody knows about it

One of the biggest reasons Hive hasn't been adopted, is that people simply don't know about the ecosystem or the amazing dApps we have.

We believe that Hive advertising itself should be aimed at developers and entrepreneurs. @crimsonclad already has that on lock.

We want to advertise The Everything App in every corner of the cryptospace so that our target audience realizes there's an alternative to Reddit, Twitter, and Medium in a decentralized, immutable, censorship proof and tokenizable ecosystem.

Our ads will aim to convince these users that a Web3 social media app is now available and that it is life-changing once they adopt it. We bring them to our sign up flow where they are prompted to create a Hive Lite Account using LeoInfra and create their first Thread to earn some crypto... All in under 30 seconds.

Focus: Banners in crypto-related websites, featured articles in news outlets, small event sponsorships, and more.


  • Full transparency with a detailed report of what we spend this budget on.

  • Monthly report on traffic, clicks generated, and user turnover through our referral system.

*The expenses to research correct venues and outlets to advertise on, to coordinate these sponsorships, and the man-hours to correctly onboard the new users will run on The Everything App's own budget. The DHF budget will ONLY be used for actual placements. No employees of The Everything App will be paid from this budget.

3. Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing has become one of the best ways to push products. Look at the Logan Paul's and MrBeast's of the world. They have built brands around themselves as influencers. Companies now pay them tens of millions of dollars to sell their products. Additionally, these big influencers even created their own products.

The power of influencers has just begun. In a Web3 world, we believe this is even more important. You know how this works... Think of someone that is an influencer who you follow. Maybe it's a YouTuber or a TikToker or a reality TV show star. Whoever it is, you trust them. When they push a product, you are 10x more likely to go out and buy it.

Nobody talks about Hive in the traditional mainstream social media platforms except Hivers. If you search the #hive tag on Twitter, you will just see all of the same faces you see on Hive every day.

Influencer marketing can have great results if done right and choosing the people carefully. Our aim is to bring in some small, mid and eventually large influencers who will - as an example, using a Twitter influencer - move a % of their activities from Twitter to Threads.

We're not stupid. These influencers don't want to ditch Web2 where they've built their brand and business for some unknown Web3 platform, no matter how good that platform might be.

Instead, we're going to pay them to move a small % of their activities to Web3. Not all of it. We'll have them push it to their audience as another platform to use. Not a platform to replace.

Focus: Sponsored articles by opinion leaders, YouTube videos sponsorships, Twitter Threads by influencers, Twitch sessions sponsorships.


  • Full transparency with a detailed report of what we spend this budget on.

  • Monthly report on traffic, clicks generated, and user turnover through our referral system.

*The expenses to research good influencers and coordinate these sponsorships, as well as the man-hours to correctly onboard the new users will run on The Everything App's own budget. Again, our Team won't take a paycheck from the DHF. EVER. We'll prove this through all of our transparency reports showing - to the penny - where funds flow.

4. Collaboration Marketing

As mentioned above, we have 3 official partners as of today, and we plan to keep on working to clinch more high impact partnerships. So far, we are self-funding all of these partnerships and will continue to do so in many ways.

Focus: Sponsor digital events revolving around our partners' ecosystem and communities. These events will involve, to a degree, using The Everything App to become eligible to win.

We recently ran a Zealy campaign and gave away $10k from our own budget. This campaign onboarded hundreds of new users and brought a lot of attention and activity to the Everything App as well as to the Hive ecosystem. Tons of new accounts were created.

We want to keep running campaigns like this one but to also start running them with our partners. We believe we have an amazing model now tested and built for this and leveraging it alongside our partnerships could bring in thousands of new users per campaign.


  • Full transparency with a detailed report of what we spend this budget on.

  • Report on user turnover and retention through our referral system.

*The expenses to coordinate these contest sponsorships and the man-hours to correctly onboard the new users will run on The Everything App's own payroll budget. The DHF only needs to cover the actual marketing payment.

5. Guerilla Marketing

The Hive Ecosystem and Crypto in general is growing slowly if we look at worldwide metrics, but if we look at specific countries we can see that the adoption rate is high, and grows at an accelerated pace. Guerilla Marketing has been a huge lacking point for the Hive ecosystem.

Focus: QR code Stickers spread around whole cities. Our very own users will take this task into their own hands and paste these stickers in strategic points: High traffic corners, restaurants, parks etc.

People have done stuff like this before and there has been a lot of success for other crypto projects who have done it right.

We believe we can do this right by having a seamless onboarding funnel connected to a QR code.

This is going to be a very small % of our overall marketing budget, but we believe that the cost per onboarded user will be extremely low & highly efficient.

Why? Because a QR code that says something like "Scan Me to Get $10 in Crypto in 30 Seconds" (rough example) will get a ton of scans.

Then they get fed to an onboarding funnel to use LeoInfra's Hive Lite Account Protocol and within 30 seconds, they create a Hive account and are prompted to post their first Thread.


  • Full transparency on what we spend this budget on.

  • Report on user turnover and retention through our referral system.

*The expenses to pay our users for their time to spread these stickers and the man-hours to correctly onboard the new users will run on The Everything App's own budget.

6. Adoption Campaigns

In June, we organized an adoption Campaign that resulted in hundreds of thousands of views on Twitter, tens of thousands of views on Youtube, hundreds of clicks on Medium and a turnover of 1,300 Monthly Active users on LeoFinance.

We achieved this through Zealy, a gamification platform that leverages on the existing user base to promote crypto ecosystems and market them through p2p strategies. We funded the $10,000 USD prize from our own pocket and we are very satisfied with the results. The cost per user onboarded was extremely efficient and well-worth every penny we spent.

We want to continue our Zealy campaigns as a monthly initiative where we reward our users for their promotion efforts, and we onboard new users to the Hive Ecosystem.


  • Monthly report about user engagement, web2 KPIs, and results.

  • Report on user turnover and retention through our referral system.

*We will match the DHF out of our own pocket - 50% of the Prize pool will be self-funded, and the other half from the DHF budget we're asking for. The expenses of running the campaigns and the man-hours to correctly onboard the new users will again come from our own pocket. We won't ask the DHF to fund our payroll for these campaigns.

7. Organic Growth by TEA

We will continue with our normal user acquisition and onboarding strategies to increase our Monthly Active Users, and as a result increase the Total active users in the Hive Blockchain.

The Everything App: DHF Proposal

The budget breakdown below is shown daily for transparency, enabling anyone to know exactly where the funds are going:

  • The Everything App Development - $0 (we'll never ask Hive to pay for our own technical development or team payroll)

  • Advertisement - $120

  • Traditional Marketing - $90

  • Influencer Marketing - $140

  • Guerilla Marketing - $70

  • Adoption Campaigns - $75

  • Organic Growth - $0

Total Daily Budget: $495

Time Frame

Our marketing plan is designed for the remainder of 2023, starting on September 1st, and continuing throughout the full year of 2024.

Onboarding Goals

Our initial goals are designed on a quarterly basis. They will be revisited every quarter if the goals of the previous quarter are overachieved substantially, and modified to reflect the previous growth of the Hive Ecosystem. If the goals of the previous quarter are not achieved, we will revisit the strategies - not the goals - to make up for the unachieved growth in the current quarter.

To determine these initial goals, we are taking into account the customer acquisition cost for established social media platforms that leverage their economies of scale. The high customer acquisition cost (CAC) for web3 projects is inefficient but in that inefficiency, there is a lot of room to grow compared to web2 platforms. We've researched and tested the efficiency of cost per acquisition of Google ads, and the cost per lead for B2B channels. We're also considering the existing Hive user base and aiming for a substantial percentage-wise growth of the ENTIRE Hive ecosystem, not just our own current user base.

We are focusing on acquiring monthly active users for the Hive ecosystem, not on onboarding investors. We strongly believe that the investing part of the equation will come naturally with usage and overall network effects, but the first step is to actually bring in users. If there are no users of Hive, Hive is dead. The reason we are alive and thriving from a developer and investor perspective is because of the Layer 0 - the community of die-hard Hivers that come to this chain every single day.

With a budget of ~$15,000 USD per month and taking into account that there is no other metric to determine if an onboarding process is successful except for usage, our onboarding goals by quarter are:

YearPeriodNew Users*Growth %*CAC
*The goals show a positive tendency as we assess what works and what doesn't on a quarterly basis, allowing us to allocate the budget towards higher-impact activities in future quarters. *Taking into account the average Hive MAUs is 10,900. Each quarter takes into account the growth of the previous quarter.

As mentioned above, these goals will be revisited quarterly and if we overachieve them by a substantial margin we will modify them accordingly for the upcoming quarters.


For each of the 5 Marketing sections above we will publish a monthly report with:

  • Expenses with invoices attached

  • Budget allocation

  • Users converted

  • Retention rate of previous Qs*

  • Market insights

  • Impressions

  • Links to ads, tweets, articles etc.

  • Overall growth graphics

  • Learnings and experiences to create a framework for future initiatives like this one, either by Leo or by anyone else

*for transparency and learning purposes, not as a KPI

Tracking the Onboarding and the Budget

Each of the 6 growth sections above will have an individual referral code, enabling us to track the success of each section in terms of conversion and retention. This data will allow us to allocate more resources to the most successful sections.

For transparency, we will create an account for the DHF fund on both Hive and BSC. This account will be publicly accessible, enabling anyone to oversee, track the transactions, and cross-check them with the invoices and proof of payments we receive

Overview and Results

  • Name: The Everything App - DHF Proposal

  • Time Frame: 16 months - September 1st, 2023 to December 31st, 2024

  • Goals: +9,615 new Hive users (nearly 2x the current user base of Hive)

  • Total Budget: $241,560 USD

If, by the end of the proposal and by any chance, we fail to achieve the proposal's onboarding goals, we will promptly transfer the total amount we receive* back to the DHF account. Eating the amount we spent over the prior 16 months out of our own pocket.

A No-Risk Investment into Marketing for the Hive Blockchain

If we achieve our onboarding goals, the Hive ecosystem will grow by at least 88% with an average CAC of $25 USD per user, which is extremely competitive even if we compare it to traditional, established social media platforms.

If we don’t achieve our onboarding goals, the Hive ecosystem will still grow by any percentage at a $0 cost, because we will reimburse all of the marketing budget we receive.

Hive's current market cap is just over $100 Million. With 11,000 users making up the monthly active social user base. We're not saying that doubling this user base is going to immediately add $100M to the market cap of Hive, but we do believe in an MCAP $ per user. Increasing the user base by 2x will surely have an impact on the overall growth, attractiveness and efficacy of Hive and all her dApps.

Counterarguments to Our Proposal

Q: What if you just bot the account creation through one referral link and reach the target with useless accounts?

A: We will measure an active user as someone who creates an account with one of our referral codes, and posts X posts/comments. We are aiming to onboard active users. Not people who come here once and then leave.

Follow-up Q: Yeah but that can be botted too.

A: We'll regularly publish data on these users (as we already do with our current user base) showing the overall activity in terms of Posts, Comments, Votes, Threads. Again, ACTIVE users are our goal.

Q: But why would the Hive DHF pay for the marketing of an individual dapp?

A: As stated in the first section, we believe that the DHF should not fund the development of dApps and pay their team's salaries (which are often inflated af). We have our own budget for development. Our own runway to pay our team. We even fund our current marketing efforts. Our proposal here simply aims to amplify and accelerate our ability to onboard people to Hive through as their initial gateway interaction.

We want to get them hooked on Threads, Posts, Comments, etc. and continually educate them about the other opportunities on Hive so that they can take control of their Web3 journey and utilize not just our dApp but all of the opportunities on Hive. A rising tide lifts all boats.

“If you build it, they will come” is not going to work. Projects need marketing and they need to position themselves in front of the target audience. As opposed to asking for development funds to simply wait for the "build it and they will come model" we are pushing a "we are going to fund and build this thing no matter what, they will come because we push massive marketing & onboarding campaigns in their faces".

Our campaigns will primarily focus on simply getting the prospect to sign up and start interacting on Microblogging (Threads), create their first Post, create their first Comment, play around with the Hive/Hive-Engine wallet UI, etc.

From there, the campaigns that we run directly on our UI will focus on educating them about Hive from a broader perspective - teaching them about how their content is living on an immutable Web3 blockchain and how their account can be utilized on other Web3 dApps who are built on that base layer.

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Posted Using LeoFinance Alpha

Posted Using LeoFinance Alpha