According to a new Forrester report, the word "blockchain" has become so closely associated with the clamor and "Wild West connotations" of cryptocurrency that some companies are opting to stop using the term.
Search for "blockchain" on Google and you'll find about 215 million results. This excessive use has led some companies to remodel it as "distributed ledger technology" or "DLT", a term that has not been advertised in a professional way to the point of bleeding the ears. (Unlike "blockchain", which is known to cause permanent deafness after hearing it more than two hundred million times.) Some of these companies, Forrester discovered, also use the word "blockchain" when they describe applications that "lack key "characteristics that many consider essential components of a blockchain. "
Coincidentally, BREAKER spoke to Amanda Gutterman, chief marketing officer of ConsenSys, yesterday during the Brooklyn Tech Week on this topic. The main marketing efforts of ConsenSys (or not at all in the head, since there is no hierarchy in the "mesh", what ConsenSys calls his team) require a lot of explanations on the technical aspects of the blockchain, or so one might think. In a hotel room upstairs from the Williamsburg site of Brooklyn Tech week, overlooking the Manhattan skyline from the other side of the East River, Gutterman compared the blockchain to a city sewage system with an explanation of why the term does not matter.
"I think most human beings will interact online with blockchain-built systems, but they will not have to know how they work," he said. "Just the same way I can come to a new city, and I can use the bathroom without knowing how the sewage system works."
So people do not even need to hear the word "blockchain" in the field of a company or read it in their marketing deck to get interested?
"I'm a marketer," said Gutterman. "So if sales increase, then say it, by all means." Although the "glamor" blockchain has peaked in 2017 – "the year of our Lambo", as Gutterman refers to it – the word may still increase sales.
"I think he still does it," he said, after a moment of reflection. "I think the word" blockchain "is something that people get excited about, and I think it's a good thing, and it was really good for space." Consumers admit they might be interested less of the keyword blockchain that, for example, investors who want to ride the wave of the "future".
Eventually, when the blockchain buzz goes off, Gutterman thinks companies that have no business in space will leave. "The last two months have been extraordinary in eliminating people who are not serious, and really redirecting the energy of the people they are," he said. "So, if you're not interested in the blockchain because it's an abused buzzword now, great, go and enjoy the next thing for the next six months."
Perhaps that "next thing" will be DLT.