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SKALE Labs names veteran Andrew Saunders as its new CMO

Andrew Saunders to enhance SKALE's market visibility and user engagement, dealing with two "luxury problems."

SKALE Labs taps veteran Andrew Saunders as its new CMO

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SKALE Labs, the entity behind the gasless blockchain SKALE, has announced the appointment of Andrew Saunders as its Chief Marketing and Growth Officer. Saunders’ previous roles include Global Head of Entertainment and Culture at Amazon, Vice President of Content Innovation and Creative at NBCUniversal, and the first CMO at Arbitrum.

According to the April edition of the “DappRadar Games Report,” SKALE showed 197,000 unique daily active wallets last month, being the fifth largest blockchain by user activity. Despite showing the numbers, market awareness around SKALE is not keeping up with what the project is building, something Jack O’Holleran, CEO of SKALE Labs, recognizes.

“When you look at DappRadar rankings, SKALE is in the top five pretty much every day in terms of unique active wallets and transaction volume. If not five, it’s in the top ten almost every single day. But then you go look at where we rank in terms of our awareness among the broader market and we’re not there in the top five or ten,” shared O’Holleran with Crypto Briefing. 

However, he highlights that SKALE has “huge awareness” among builders in crypto. “That tells me that we have an amazing opportunity now to take this foundational structure and strength and developer attention and fundamentals and then drive that awareness. So I’m incredibly excited that we have our first ever CMO and the reality is you look at Andrew’s track record and what he did at Arbitrum and what he’s done at other points in his career, he is the absolute perfect person to come here and drive our awareness through the roof.”

Without revealing too much of his playbook, Saunders explained that there are more to marketing and growth in crypto than a professional background in the sector. In other words, being a trader and an investor also plays a huge part in spreading awareness about a protocol.

“I like to consider myself a little bit of a Web 2.5 marketer. And so what you’ll probably see is things that you’ve seen in Web2, things that you’ve seen in Web3, but them coming together in maybe non-traditional and more interesting ways. And that’s always been how I’ve been,” said Saunders.

Moreover, SKALE’s new Chief Marketing and Growth Officer stated that he’s fond of experimentation, as he was the first marketer to put brands on Netflix. Therefore, users can expect “out of the box” initiatives from Saunders.

Two “luxury problems”

One of the core characteristics related to blockchain technology is the fee concept. To send messages on a blockchain, be it a transaction or a smart contract interaction, fees must be paid to the infrastructure in use. Otherwise, validators would have no incentives to secure the network, users would be able to spam transactions and damage the network, and many other bad scenarios.

Consequently, SKALE’s idea of ‘gasless’ might rub some users the wrong way, although the network isn’t based on totally free interactions. “Frankly, the architecture is complicated. It’s not easy to explain. And the easiest explanation is, hey, guess what? There’s still fees being paid, but there are chain fees and not individual gas fees. So the developer can pay instead of the end user. Because if you don’t have fees, you have no economic sustainability,” stated O’Holleran.

This issue, along with the lack of awareness among crypto users, is called by SKALE Labs’ CEO as “two luxury problems.” “We have amazing fundamentals, and not enough people know about us. We have amazing technology, that’s complex and difficult to message. Those are two problems that marketing solves, and that’s why Andrew’s on board.”

The best way to solve the complexity issue is by making people focus on the products developed on top of SKALE’s infrastructure, explained Saunders. As an example, he mentions mainstream games available on the Epic Games marketplace, which offers high-quality games and players are not interested in knowing which engine was used to develop them.

“I’m not seeing any of this on the backend. I’m just playing the game, and it’s operating. It’s never crashing,” added Saunders. By offering seamless experiences like this one, the gasless discussion becomes obsolete.

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