How to Use BitClout: A Complete Beginner's Guide (2021)
I'm just going to keep this intro short - you're probably here to learn more about BitClout and how you can get started using this new decentralized social media platform.
Well, you've come to the right place.
In this post, I'll go over everything you need to know about BitClout, including what it is, whether or not it's a scam, and how to get started on the platform.
Even if you're a complete beginner, don't worry - I'll explain everything in detail so anybody can understand.
Table of Contents
What is BitClout?
Is BitClout a Scam?
How to Create a BitClout Account and get a Creator Coin
How to Buy BitClout
The Basics of BitClout (for Beginners)
How to Buy & Sell Creator Coins
Top 3 Tips for Starting on BitClout
How to Invest Effectively
How to Sell & Withdraw BitClout
The Technical Side of BitClout
What is BitClout? (Quick Introduction)
BitClout is a new type of social media platform that functions very similar to Twitter, except you have the added ability to invest money in different people on the platform.
Image of BitClout homepage as a logged-in user
So how does it work?
Everyone on BitClout gets their own digital coin which anybody can buy and sell. These coins are called creator coins and are meant to represent the value brought by the person behind the social media profile.
You can also think of creator coins as individual cryptocurrency tokens that are tied to your social reputation, or "clout".
All you have to do to get your own creator coin is to create a profile on BitClout.
Elon Musk's Profile on BitClout
Creator coins increase in value as investors buy more of your coin, and decrease in value when investors sell your coin. They’re priced on an exponential curve, so as people buy more of a creator coin, its price will increase faster and faster. Similarly, if people start selling a creator coin, its price will decrease faster and faster.
(I’ll get into the exact specifics of creator coin pricing later on in this article — for now, I just want to give a quick introduction to get you started)
To buy creator coins, you must use the platform’s native cryptocurrency, called BitClout (or BCLT for short). You can get BCLT by depositing Bitcoin on BitClout.com, or by buying from a third-party exchange such as BitSwap.
You also need very small amounts of BitClout to update your profile, make a post, “reclout” (similar to retweets on Twitter), and perform other basic platform activities.
However, you get sent free “starter BitClout” when you sign up and verify your phone number, which should mostly cover these basic activities.
The reason these basic activities cost a small amount of money is that BitClout is run on a blockchain, similar to how Ethereum or Bitcoin works.
Whenever you make a post, update your profile, or do anything on BitClout, a new block is added to the blockchain that stores a record about what you did. Blocks are added in a process known as "mining", which is what takes resources (and costs BitClout).
While this means it costs a small amount of money to make posts and use BitClout, it also means that everything on BitClout is decentralized. Everything on the blockchain is public, and there's no company behind BitClout that can censor or delete posts.
Is BitClout a Scam?
One of BitClout’s biggest criticisms is that if you put Bitcoin into the platform to buy BCLT, you can’t withdraw it back out (at least not directly).
For this reason, critics say BitClout may just be a quick cash-grab. The developers of BitClout pocket all the Bitcoin (real currency) that was deposited into the platform, leaving investors with no way to get their money back.
However, while there's no direct way to withdraw BitClout, there are now third-party exchange services that allow you to trade BitClout on secondary exchange markets.
For example, you can buy and sell BCLT on a BitClout exchange like BitSwap, albeit prices are normally at a 40% discount to the officially listed prices on BitClout.com.
Image of BitSwap Exchange
However, even if BitClout is legit, it could still one day go bust. It's definitely still speculative at this point, and you probably shouldn’t put any money into BitClout that you can't afford to lose, just as a general investing principle.
That's why I recommend you start off by creating a free BitClout profile, without spending any money on the platform until you get used to it more.
And if you do decide to buy BitClout, don't buy directly from BitClout.com. Instead, use a third-party exchange service to buy BCLT at a discount to face-value prices.
If that sounds complicated, don’t worry — I'll show you how to do all of that in this article. Let's start with how to create your first BitClout account.
How to Create a BitClout Account (and get a Creator Coin)
Now I will walk you through how you can get started on BitClout. We will create a profile and show you how you can begin on the platform.
2) Click Sign Up!
Click the sign up button on the BitClout homepage (as seen in the image above)
You will be redirected to identity.bitclout.com/sign-up, where you will receive your seed phrase (which is basically your login password).
Write, download, print, or copy it down somewhere safe. Then, store another copy as a backup somewhere else too. NEVER share your seed phrase with anyone!
If you lose your seed phrase, your account will be lost forever.
Note: I created this new unused account for the purposes of this tutorial, which is why I shared the seed phrase. DO NOT SHARE YOUR SEED PHRASE, EVER!
After you click next, you'll need to re-enter your seed phrase to continue. This is to make sure you have the phrase recorded properly.
3) Verify your Phone Number to get Free Starter BitClout
Then, you need to verify your phone number to get sent the free “starter BitClout” that I mentioned earlier.
Basically, you can get around $0.50 BCLT for free, which will get you started on the platform (i.e. to like, comment, etc.)
If you aren't automatically redirected to get starter BitClout, you can visit the "Update Profile" page to verify your phone number.
If you buy BitClout or get sent BitClout before verifying your phone number, you won't be able to get starter BitClout anymore!
After you verify your phone number, an account called Merlin will send you your starter BitClout (about $0.40)
Note: When I made a new account for this tutorial, the phone verification system was broken. If this happens to you, try clicking the resend button, and if it still doesn’t work after a few minutes, try again later. It seems that BitClout’s verification service is still pretty unreliable at this point.
4) Update your Profile & Get a Creator Coin
You will get your creator coin after you update your username and create a profile.
As of right now, it costs around 0.01 BitClout to update your profile, which is about $1.60 in US dollars.
Unfortunately, you won't have enough starter BitClout to update your profile. However, you can get free "Starter Penny" BitClout from GiftClout.com by visiting their website and scrolling down to the "Request Starter Penny" button. This "Starter Penny" will cover your expenses for updating your profile.
GiftClout is supported by the BitClout community and is not associated with the BitClout Devs or BitSwap. If you'd like to support them in the future, you can visit their website to find out how.
Alternatively, if you want to buy BitClout, you can scroll down below to the section titled "How to Buy BitClout".
With that out of the way, let's get into best practices when updating your profile.
When you first update your profile, I recommend that you do NOT change the founder’s reward percentage (leave it at 100%).
When people buy your creator coin, a portion of their purchase is sent back to you. This percentage is known as the founder reward.
By keeping your founder’s reward at 100%, you prevent people from buying your coin before you do.
Why is this important?
The nature of creator coin pricing means that coin prices initially start off very cheap, but get progressively higher faster and faster as more coins are minted.
So when you start off, you probably want to prevent other people from buying in until you buy some of your own coin for yourself. Then, you can reap the rewards of investing early in yourself 😉
How to Buy BitClout
As I already mentioned, I recommend you spend a little bit of time getting used to the platform before buying BCLT. So you can skip this step for now, and come back later once you decide you want to invest more into the BitClout platform.
You use the BitClout cryptocurrency mainly to buy creator coins.
Here are the two main ways to buy BitClout:
Buy directly from bitclout.com/buy-bitclout (not recommended!)
Buy from a third-party BitClout exchange service
To buy BCLT directly from BitClout.com, you can click the “Buy BitClout” link in the left-side menu on BitClout. Then, you can send Bitcoin in exchange for BCLT.
However, I recommend that you do NOT buy directly from BitClout.com, because you can get cheaper prices on secondary exchanges.
For example, at the time of writing, BitClout.com sells one BCLT for about $170 each, whereas on BitSwap Exchange you can easily find BCLT selling for around $105 (about 40% cheaper).
Disclaimer: I am an employee of BitSwap, but I truly believe that once you try BitSwap Exchange, you won’t ever buy BitClout from anywhere else again. It’s just so easy, and transactions are instant (no other exchanges have this).
Now that you have an account, you can start to explore BitClout and everything that it offers. BitClout is pretty similar to Twitter and other social media platforms, so it should be mostly intuitive.
Here’s a quick outline of what I will talk about in the rest of this article, in case you want to jump ahead to a specific section.
Basics of BitClout
How to Buy and Sell Creator Coins
4 Tips for Beginners
How to Sell and Withdraw BitClout from the Platform
How BitClout Works (Technical Side)
Basics of BitClout
Let’s start off by going to the homepage, where you’ll see recent posts by other members of the BitClout community.
The “global” tab shows trending global posts, and the “following” tab shows posts from creators that you follow. You can follow a creator by clicking on their name (which goes to their profile) and then clicking the follow button.
You can also make your own posts (which will appear on your personal profile) by going to the BitClout homepage. See the image below for reference:
At the bottom of each post, you’ll see a few different icons which you can use to interact with the post. Everything is pretty similar to Twitter in which there are replies, likes, retweets, and more.
Reclout & Quote
Diamond (new feature)
You can Like a post by hitting the heart button at the bottom-centre. It indicates that you like the post, and the creator will get a notification about your likes.
ReClouting works similarly to a retweet in which your reclout will show the post on your profile. This will help spread the post, and it will show your passion for the creator.
Quoting a post is similar to quoting a post on Twitter. It is when you would like to offer your thoughts on someone else’s existing post.
You would quote the post and write your reviews, and then it will show up on your profile. This can be done to boost your previous content, or it can be done to give your ideas on other creators’ content.
Lastly, BitClout recently included a new way to interact with BitClout to give diamonds to other creators.
Giving a diamond means you can provide portions of your coin to another creator. This can be done out of appreciation, and it can help your coin grow.
To give a diamond, click on the diamond button at the bottom of the post, and you can choose how much of your creator coin to send to the original post’s creator.
How to Buy and Sell Creator Coins
Buying a Creator Coin
To buy a creator coin, visit the profile of the person you want to buy. Then, at the top-right of the profile you can click the buy button and transfer BitClout to buy the creator coin.
By default, BitClout shows currencies in US Dollars, but keep in mind that creator coins are bought using BitClout from your account balance (BCLT is converted to a US Dollar price for ease of use).
Everything should be pretty self-explanatory if you follow BitClout’s instructions on each page. If you need more help, I also made a video that shows the process of buying a creator coin:
Also, when you buy a creator coin, make sure to take a note of the founder’s reward. Let me explain:
What are Founder Rewards?
When you buy a creator coin, a percentage of your purchase is given to the creator of the profile (paid in BCLT). This percentage is known as the founder’s reward, and the exact percentage is set by the original creator in their profile settings.
You can see a coin’s founder reward after you click the buy button of a profile, and before you confirm a purchase.
People normally set their founder rewards anywhere from 0% to 15%.
For example, the @bitswap coin has a 10% founder’s reward. So if I were to invest $1000 into the @bitswap coin, I would receive $900 worth of the creator coin, with the remaining 10%, or $100 being sent to @bitswap’s BitClout wallet.
If a coin’s founder reward is too high, then the majority of your purchase will be sent to the original creator instead of being credited to you.
Make sure to avoid buying creator coins where the founder reward is absurdly high.
Selling or Transferring a Creator Coin
Your wallet also shows the quantity, price, and total value of each creator coin that you hold.
To sell or transfer a creator coin, click the icon with the opposite-facing arrows (displayed to the right of the creator coin’s total value).
From there, you’ll get a popup toggle to select what you want to do: buy more of the coin, sell some/all of it, or transfer some/all of the coin to someone else.
If you click sell, you’ll be brought to a page where you can select how much of the creator coin to sell. You can also transfer creator coins to other people on BitClout, or buy more creator coins directly from your wallet page too.\
Tips for Beginners Starting on BitClout
1. Provide Value to your Followers
It is also crucial to consistently be posting on BitClout so you can provide value to your followers. Commenting on other people’s posts and helping others is also a great way to get engagement on the platform.
But being active doesn’t mean randomly posting and commenting just for the sake of it. You actually need to provide value to the community. Something useful.
For example, if you just have a personal profile, you can post tips about whatever topic you’re interested in. Or provide comments and make posts that inform people or help people.
Also, don’t be afraid to ask other people for help or advice! The BitClout community is one of the main reasons I like BitClout so much!
Posting valuable content that your followers and investors enjoy is a great way to help your coin grow. Another way to grow your coin is by staying active on alternate BitClout channels. Some of these include the BitClout discord and clubhouse communities.
2. Don’t Dump (Sell Large Amounts) of Your Creator Coin
Lastly, a tip that all BitClouters will tell you is never to sell your creator coin unless absolutely necessary. This can hurt your reputation, and investors may think that you aren’t fully invested in the platform.
Selling your own coin can only negatively affect you. Even BitClout warns you about this because selling your own can really ruin one’s reputation. This is a tip that any and every creator can use regardless of their experience on the platform.
P.S. Don’t worry I'm not actually selling my own coin.
3. Understand how BitClout and Creator Coins are Priced
BitClout is priced based on two factors: the total outstanding supply of BitClout and the exchange rate between BitClout and other currencies.
BitClout prices are dependent on the total number of coins that have been minted. This means that for every 1 million BitClout coins created, the official price of a coin will double.
This trend is referred to as the bonding curve. As you can see, as the number of coins increases by 1 million, the price of BitClout doubles as well.
But what about Creator Coins?
Creator Coins are priced using a similar bonding curve.
Every time the supply of a creator coin doubles, the price will quadruple. So as people buy more of a creator coin, its price grows exponentially. In the same way, if people start selling, creator coin prices decrease exponentially.
Keep in mind that both BitClout and Creator Coin prices are pegged to the price of Bitcoin (whether directly or indirectly). This means if the price of Bitcoin fluctuates with respect to the US Dollar, then the price of BitClout will also change (if you use US Dollars to measure price).
How can I invest effectively on BitClout?
Investing in BitClout can be tedious because there are so many creators to choose from. It is pretty hard to identify between scams and those who are really dedicated to their craft on BitClout. These are only tips and tricks and are not guaranteed to work.
Analyzing Creator Coins
Firstly when investing, do your research and try to analyze the creator's coin and how it has been performing. This can be done through the many resources present on BitClout.
Another tip is to view the creator’s dedication to their account by looking at their activity. You can ask questions like these to guide your investment decision.
Is this creator posting consistently?
Am I interested in this creator's content?
Are they actively using all parts of the algorithm like liking, reclouting and commenting?
What other accounts are they invested in?
Are they verified?
In addition to asking these questions, you can also study their investors. It is key to looking at the number of investors and the amount invested in learning how you can invest yourself. Furthermore, you should also look at if any prominent investors are invested in the creator.
Since there is no mainstream definition for a prominent investor/creator on BitClout let's set a definition. We usually go by the above analysis criteria as a means for determining whether or not a creator is considered prominent or not.
If the creator meets most of these criteria, then you might want to invest in them.
Disclaimer: This isn't financial advice, and shouldn't be taken as such. The content provided in this article is for educational purposes only.
How to Sell and Withdraw BitClout
Currently, BitClout does not have an option to directly sell your coins, but there are third-party platforms like Bitswap where you can sell your BitClout.
A third-party BitClout exchange allows you to buy and sell BitClout for other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, USDT/USDC, etc. Bitswap currently only supports the Ethereum currency, but more options are coming.
Keep in mind that BitClout prices on any secondary exchange will normally be only 60% of the official listed price on BitClout.com. That’s just the general secondary market price that I’ve observed, although there are definitely fluctuations.
Anyways, here’s how you can get started with BitSwap Exchange:
Connect an Ethereum Wallet to Receive payment in Ethereum
Create a Sell Order to Sell BitClout
Depending on the price you set, you'll receive Ethereum in your wallet in as fast as a few seconds!
Now you are an expert in BitClout! You have learned how to invest, grow and withdraw your BitClout coins effectively.
I’d like to take some time now to explain more of the technical side of BitClout (cryptocurrency, blockchain, etc) in case that’s something that you’re interested in.
How Does BitClout Work? (Technical Side)
What is a blockchain?
The blockchain is a database containing a chain of “blocks” that store data about something. Normally these blocks contain information about a transaction, a block identifier (known as the block’s hash) and a link to the previous block in the chain (the previous block’s hash identifier).
Each block is linked to a previous block which therefore creates a chain. The blockchain does not allow for data to be hidden, and therefore, everyone has access to the data.
You might be wondering what this has to do with BitClout. BitClout is also run on a blockchain, precisely one similar to the Bitcoin Blockchain.
When a creator sends, sells or buys a creator coin, a new block is created that stores information about what they did. This block is then stored in the blockchain.
Hopefully, this post has helped you better understand what blockchain and cryptocurrency are through the lens of BitClout. In addition, we hope you use our tips and tricks on how to invest appropriately and with ease on BitClout.