Who is the customer?

As Index continues to release more products and business materials, we need to spend time talking about our end customers. Understanding our investor’s needs will help us remain investor centric and help build a trust-based relationship.

Today we had a meeting regarding publishing a quarterly or equivalent report for our investors. To build this report, we need a conceptual understanding of who buys $DPI and $Index and why they buy it. This understanding should build on quantitative analysis and a qualitative discussion of who these investors are.

Imagine a nurse, or a factory worker, a student, a teacher, a construction worker. They may be digital natives and likely feel comfortable navigating the internet. They are comfortable enough to discover Eth and eventually $DPI. They may have some business or finance background, but probably not enough to feel comfortable navigating the vast DeFi ecosystem. They also may have some savings or money to invest, but not enough to participate in yield farming or wealth creation across multiple platforms.

This hypothetical investor understands the value of DeFi but lacks the financial resources to participate fully. Their investment of $1000 to $10,000 is a HUGE risk for them and needs to be carefully planned. Not only is it a big risk, but it is a significant emotional event. They will feel nervous, excited, and a little scared.

How do we give them confidence in this investment? How do we build trust?

Our first and most crucial step is ensuring that they have as much information as possible and that the information is presented professionally and in a way that they can understand.
These investors want to know a few things.

• How much money is their investment returning?
• How is there investment performing against the market as whole?
• Where is the investment going, is it growing or contracting?
• How is there money being spent? (Treasury)
• What do the true insiders know and what information are they acting on?

Currently DeFi is a space of tremendous information asymmetry. While the information is all public, the education and experience background needed to understand the system is massive. As crypto leaders we take for granted how big our information asymmetry is- hop on any of our community calls and you will be instantly blown away by both people’s background’s and understanding of the space. There are maybe 20,000 people in the world who really get it.

The onus is on us to reduce this information asymmetry and give our investors high quality and digestible information. $DPI is doing that right now, by giving retail investors access to the same returns as crypto natives. We need to make sure that the information we put out builds on the trust and transparency of our products.

Somewhere, someone is about to invest their savings in $DPI or $Index. Those savings have been ravaged and taken by Wall Street for decades. What are we doing to build back a century of destroyed trust?

Thanks to @DarkForestCapital for sparking this discussion


Regarding the importance of building trust, and communications … I would be happy to help bridge the information gap you so poignantly described. Count me in to be part of the communications team.

Regarding the question “Who is the customer?” I believe this was meant as “Who is the current customer, of $DPI”? Along these lines, is there any way to reach out to them, to get a better sense of who they are? What motivated them to invest? Conduct some customer interviews? This would greatly improve our ability to resonate with them.

Zooming out though, do we have any sense for who the ideal customers are? Which market segments should we be training our product development on? Which use-cases represent the greatest potential for AUM acceleration? How can we match those segments with the passions of individual coop members, to create market-centric product teams? If this type of analysis exists, I’d be curious to know more.

Looking forward!


This is a cool narrative, do you feel satisfied by this answer?

I find it a useful exercise to take a moment and reflect on who we are. What do we care about? What information do we need to see? I think it is likely that the personas represented in our own community are likely to be the same personas of users attracted to our own products.

Fundamentally, we should never ship products or put out information that we aren’t proud of. It is way easier to delude yourself into thinking that there is a potential customer for your product out there, but much more possible to look internally and truly consider if you find something useful.

I know I certainly felt this way when I first bought DPI!

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@puniaviision this a great point and a great way of looking the problem. What I’m cautious of is that as our community grows more and more sophisticated we lose track of the knowledge level of our core users.

What you are suggesting with these questions is that we need to clearly define community values that act as guideposts for product development and community organization. Some of these values are commonly understood and shared across DeFi, others need to be more closely tailored to Index and our unique mission.

For example, Curve is a sophisticated platform with a high knowledge barrier of entry. Their community is built around a radically different type of user than ours. While we currently overlap amongst early adapters because the pool is so small, this will likely not be the case moving forward. Because of the nature of our product, we are obligated to build on a foundation simplicity and accessibility. Curve does not share this obligation because they explicitly offer highly complex products to sophisticated users.

Right now yes, we have a strong guidepost and product philosophy. However, as we continue to evolve and progress as a community, the need for guiding principles and a deep understanding of our core users will grow.

Very excited to watch this community continue to evolve and watch each of our investors succeed!

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Sharing for context :point_right: DPI Buyers Journey [Google Sheet]

This a little old, but I’d imagine adds some useful perspective on “Who is the customer?”

I still can’t track down the slide that has a simpler version of that…

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