Creating a plan is a good way to structure your ideas but also to present your project to the broader community. As you are probably aware, we are kicking off the Neo Frontier Launchpad with a Planathon.
Competing in the Planathon is not a requirement and you can choose to participate only in the Development phase. However, if you do submit a plan, your final delivered product will be evaluated against it, allowing the judges to see the bigger picture behind your project. In addition, you’ll also have the chance to win a substantial multiplier (1.1x — 1.5x) for your final prize.
With the Planathon deadline coming up on June 7th, we wanted to give you some tips on what makes up a good plan. The following information has been provided by the NGD EcoGrowth team, who will not only be reviewing and providing feedback on your Neo Frontier Planathon submissions, but who are also looking for new projects to be a part of its US $10 million Early Adopter Program for Neo N3.
So if you want your project to be noticed, putting together a great plan is a great place to start!
(Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely)
You can’t go wrong with the classic SMART goal setting tool. Here is how you can apply it to creating your plan.
When a judge or user looks at a pitch/plan, the question that really needs to be answered is: what user pain point are you solving? For example, are you offering an investment opportunity for dormant assets, while improving asset liquidity for traders (AMM DEX)? Or, are you making it impossible to clone a digital piece of art while creating a new revenue source for artists (NFTs)? You should clearly specify the problem you are trying to solve and how you intend to do so.
One month is not very long, so you must have a very clear idea of how much you’ll be able to achieve within this time. Identify which items you intend to deliver. Will you need to spend time on design, or will barebones frontend be enough? How many features do you want to have? What kind of load will the app be able to handle?
As we just mentioned, you will only have one month for development. That might seem like very little, but the goal of a hackathon is to build a prototype — something that clearly showcases your ability to deliver and demonstrates your concept in a way that can be judged.
When creating your plan, prioritise core features that you can deliver that will best showcase the potential of your project. You’ll also want to ensure early on that the available technology supports your use case. The last thing you want is to spend four weeks building a dApp, and realize at the final hurdle that a critical integration is technically unfeasible.
Some participants (especially the blockchain newbies) have big ideas: to change the healthcare industry, to upgrade a pension system, or even to replace the currency of a whole country. It’s fine to shoot for the stars, but make sure you’ve done your research. There’s a reason why certain industries haven’t adopted blockchain yet.
Coming up with a realistic plan is critical to giving yourself a chance at both hackathon and commercial success. If you’re short of ideas, there’s a lot to do in the DeFi, NFT, and deep blockchain tech spaces. Check out some suggestions on our Hackathon page.
Estimate to the best of your ability the time required to achieve your goals. You’ll want to balance your work over four weeks, taking into account the size and experience of your team, to make sure no unexpected roadblocks come up just before the end. Identify which areas you believe will be the most challenging and ensure you leave yourself enough time to build them. Talk to our experts on Discord and check the documentation out to design a reasonable timeline.
Submitting your plan
To submit your plan, you’ll need to fill out our Google Form. Below are some tips to help you with your responses:
What will your project or application do? Why will your project bring value to the Neo ecosystem?
Your plan should be clear and concise. As mentioned above — when a judge or investor looks at a plan/pitch and doesn’t find an answer to the question «what pain point does it solve» — the chance this project will be considered further is very low.
Project architecture + diagram
What is your proposed use of the Neo blockchain and its features? What is your proposed technical architecture?
Try to include all the information necessary to understanding your project, but don’t forget that less can sometimes be more.
Introduce your team
How many members are in your team? Do you have any relevant experience? (Single person teams are acceptable)
Let us know if your team members have experience that is relevant to the hackathon or your project.
Provide your project roadmap
What are your short term deliverables for the hackathon? What are your medium to long term milestone goals post-hackathon?
Ideally, you should demonstrate your understanding of the development process and the road from a hackathon prototype to a fully-fledged, profitable project.
Outline your user acquisition model
Who is your target audience? How do you intend to generate users? If your project is profit generating, what does your revenue model look like?
The cryptocurrency industry is quite competitive today, so it’s crucial to have a clear user acquisition strategy. What niche or industry will you target? How will you convince people to use your app? Do you have any specific techniques in mind to attract users, such as an airdrop, liquidity mining campaign, social media, traditional advertising, etc.
In the end, it is important to mention one more thing. We will especially value the plans that demonstrate teams did deep research on the Neo ecosystem. What are the best new Neo features? What products will Neo community members be excited to use? What can be built on Neo that cannot be built anywhere else? Plans that clearly specify how a project is going to use the unique advantages of Neo and/or benefit the ecosystem will be judged most highly.