‘The climate is tough but we are true believers’: Mooning Web3 agency’s Lisa Teh
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Melbourne-based Web3 marketing agency Mooning has been building strongly, even if the crypto market has been very far from making it to the moon just lately. In fact, it seems to have completely lost its way to the launchpad.
But chatting with Coinhead last week – on International Women’s Day no less – the agency’s director and co-founder Lisa Teh told us a bit about what a Web3 agency actually is and does, and what it’s like being a prominent female voice in the male-saturated crypto industry.
Hi Lisa, let’s start with Mooning (which, we should clarify refers to the crypto-sphere term “going to the moon” and not… something else). What does your agency do?
So we specialise in helping Web2 companies enter the Web3 space safely and helping Web3 companies with their marketing. We assist with social-media management, content creation, marketing strategy and helping brands elevate their loyalty programs using Web3 technology.
Must be a tough market at the moment to work in, given last year’s bearish turn of events and all the uncertainty emanating so far this year?
Well the crypto crash last year certainly cleared out a lot of Web3 agencies globally, particularly the ones who just thought there was easy money in the space. But we are true believers. There’s no doubt the climate is tough at the moment, but we know that blockchain technology will stand the test of time.
What Mooning partnerships or projects stand out for you?
We’re fortunate to be working with some incredible companies all around the world. I wish I could tell you about them all but we are under NDA for some of them.
But one of the recent ones I can mention, and one I’m super proud of, is our collaboration with the Pullman hotel group, which is part of the Accor hospitality company.
We’ve created a traveling NFT art gallery exhibit called E/Scapes by Pullman to highlight female artists – women from all around the world. This has been in Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne and will be traveling to Brisbane.
People can buy the NFTs and the proceeds will go to the artist and a charity of their choice, while visitors to the exhibit can learn all about non-fungible tokens.
Can you give us a sense of what it’s like to be a Web3/crypto company founder in such a male-dominated industry?
It can definitely be challenging, especially when you look at how low the number of female founders are, as well as the number of female-led businesses that get funding in this space.
There can also be a lot of egos and alpha males to contend with who think they can walk all over you, which is disappointing in this day and age.
Men tend to prefer networking with other men, so it can be challenging to build relationships to generate sales.
That said, I’ve been really lucky to meet a lot of amazing men who are doing great things to support women in the space, and powerhouse women who are doing incredible things to advance their businesses and other women in the industry.
As an overall challenge as well, crypto is an industry that tends to attract a lot of scorn from people looking in, right?
I think a lot of my friends are still wondering what I do – haha! My partner is actually a bit of a Web3 sceptic himself, so it certainly makes for interesting dinner-time conversation.
But I don’t mind talking to people who are new to the space or even sceptical. To be honest, I don’t blame them, given how many bad actors there are in the industry.
It’s good to surround yourself with people who have differing opinions as it will expose you to new perspectives. It’s hard to learn and grow if you’re just in an echo chamber.
Too true. How do you think the crypto industry has evolved since you first got into it?
I think there is definitely still uncertainty in the space due to bad actors such as those involved in the FTX scandal, the crash of cryptocurrencies and the popping of the NFT bubble. There are a lot less crappy NFT projects, though, which is positive!
But while the number of Web3-native companies has dropped, we are still seeing big Web2 companies push forward in the space, which is encouraging.
And we’re actually holding a big event in Melbourne on March 20 called CX3, which is designed to help corporates understand the space better.
Let’s segue into that, actually. Can you tell us a bit more about the event and why crypto investors, and otherwise, should look to attend?
Yep, so we’re super excited to be partnering with our friends at Pullman Hotels and Coraid to host CX3, which is a conference to help people understand the technology and potential of Web3.
It can be daunting when you’re looking into the space for the first time, so we wanted to bring together some of the biggest brands in the world including Reddit, NAB, the AFL, the Australian Open and Crypto.com so people could learn from and network with these incredible thought leaders.
Our partners Metakey will be giving attendees the chance to experience the metaverse, which will be a real first for a lot of people.
Aussie cricket legend Nathan Lyon will also be doing a Q&A at the VIP lunch so if you are a sports fan, it’s a unique opportunity to get close to the GOAT!
If you’re a crypto fan and want to learn more about the space and if and when mass adoption is likely, this is the event for you! You can purchase tickets here https://cx3conference.com/ and use the code stockhead10 for 10% off VIP tickets!
Nathan Lyon – he’s bowled really well over there in India. And we see he’s got a digital/NFT-platform brand called GOATD. Was that a Mooning idea?
The GOAT is an absolute legend! So, we were originally talking to him about his digital presence and he was already looking into NFTs. Mooning is a strategic and technical partner with GOATD.
As soon as we got talking with him, we realised what was evident was his passion for his fans and giving back to the sport that’s given him so much – we could tell he’s super grateful for the position he’s in.
And so he’s got some interest in the Web3/crypto space then?
Yeah, he’s keen on the idea of using the technology as a way to give fans a chance to gain unprecedented access to their favourite athletes, and that’s how GOATD was born.
It’s a digital-membership platform that will see digital/Web3 releases from some of the world’s top athletes.
The platform is sports agnostic so it will be a way for sports lovers to be introduced to new sports and athletes. They’ll also be able to connect with sports fans from all around the world.
Are there other top cricketers interested in doing something similar, do you know?
I know there are other cricketers interested in the Web3 space, but none are building what Nathan is doing. He could have easily just done an NFT drop, but for him, the opportunity to use Web3 tech to inspire current fans and aspiring athletes, as well as help professional athletes navigate the space safely was too good to miss.
What crypto assets are you personally drawn to?
I actually first bought crypto to buy NFTs. I feel like NFTs have been a lot of people’s gateway into crypto. We also receive crypto as payment at Mooning. You can’t call yourself a Web3 company if you don’t accept crypto!
As a payment? Do you mean from clients? And which crypto or cryptos do you take?
Yes, that’s right – from Web3 clients – usually in the USDC stablecoin.
Good thing USDC seems to be on the way to regaining the 1:1 USD peg it lost over the weekend. What misconceptions about the crypto and NFT industries do you think exist, and/or what what you would like to see change?
Cryptos and NFTs tend to be very speculative assets. They are also fairly unregulated. This means there is the ability to make significant gains, but also significant losses.
A lot of people made a lot of money during the last bull run from crypto and NFTs, which led a lot of people to believe easy money was there to be made. This unfortunately draws a lot of bad actors to the place.
What excites you about crypto and NFTs?
Where do I start? Haha! Crypto has the power to add much-needed transparency to the financial industry. It can also make transactions significantly more efficient.
Don’t get me wrong, there needs to be serious time invested into regulation and weeding out all the bad seeds, but I believe it has the power to transform business transactions as we know it.
If you can get past the jpegs of apes and actually drill down into the underlying tech of NFTs, you realise there is so much potential for them to elevate business practices and processes.
For example, it can be used for digital certificates, membership, access passes, records, the list goes on. The fact that transactions on the blockchain are immutable and NFTs can easily be traded opens up huge opportunities for businesses. They can not only create new revenue streams for themselves, but also their customers.
What’s your view on the current state of the crypto market and where you think it might be heading?
The market is still very tough and he overall state of the economy doesn’t help. But we are seeing no shortage of Web2 companies who want to enter the space.
In fact, I think many are more excited than ever. Seeing big companies such as Nike, Starbucks, Reddit and Disney enter gives confidence.
When it comes to the trading market, it’s still volatile which is to be expected, but the overall sentiment is not “will the market bounce back?” but rather a case of when. Ad I think that’s encouraging to see!
Lisa notes that if you’re already a crypto investor or want to learn more about the space and if/when mass adoption is likely, then the aforementioned CX3 event should be up your alley.
In fact, she’s giving anyone reading this an event-ticket discount. When you purchase CX3 tickets here, use the code: stockhead10 for 10% off VIP tickets.
The views and opinions presented in this article should not be construed as financial advice. The interview was edited lightly for clarity.