BlackRock: the advertising of its Bitcoin ETF targets boomers



These days, several advertisements for the new Bitcoin spot ETFs are circulating, including BlackRock’s, which seems to be targeting the boomer category.

In fact, the commercial of the asset management giant seems to be very different from the others. 

The advertising of the new Bitcoin ETFs: BlackRock targets boomers

On January 10th, 11 new Bitcoin spot ETFs were approved in the USA.

The 11 sponsors of these funds have therefore started advertising them, some even before approval, now taken for granted. 

Bitwise even started circulating an initial commercial online in December, featuring “the most interesting man in the world,” actor Jonathan Goldsmith, who is already known for portraying the character of the most interesting man in the world.

Valkyrie, for example, has published the announcement on the advertising billboard of Nasdaq in Times Square, in the heart of New York. 

These ETFs, in fact, are not financial products intended only for large institutional investors, but also for private citizens who can buy them on the stock exchange. Their advertising is mainly aimed at making them known to individuals, especially those who have large capital to invest. 

The BlackRock spot

The BlackRock spot, however, is different from the others. 

It is definitely much more institutional, stiff, to the point of being a bit outdated. 

The choice of the world’s largest asset manager was not to focus on emotions but on information, which is a somewhat strange choice for an advertisement.

One could easily define the commercial as cold and boring, but this could be a deliberate choice.

BlackRock has among its clients many wealthy individuals, but generally those who have large capital are already a bit older. 

For example, among the 10 richest men in the world according to Forbes, there is only one millennial, Mark Zuckerberg, who is almost 40 years old. All the other 9 are 50 years old or older.

In addition to Zuckerberg, there are only 4 others under the age of 60, including the two founders of Google and Jeff Bezos who is 59. 

All the others are over 60, with the two founders of Microsoft being under 70, and the others being Bernard Arnault (74 years old), Larry Ellison (79), and Warren Buffett (93). 

It is not surprising, therefore, that while other sponsors of the new ETFs on Bitcoin spot specifically target Generation X and millennials, BlackRock instead targets boomers.

The success of the new ETFs

So far, there have only been two days of trading for the new ETFs, Thursday and Friday (today the US stock exchanges are closed for the holiday). 

After two days, the one that raised the most funds, thus obtaining the highest AUM, is precisely BlackRock, which has surpassed half a billion dollars from this point of view. 

Second place went to the other major asset manager, Fidelity, with $427 million. 

Thirdly, there is Bitwise’s, which targets a younger audience and has raised less than half of the funds raised by BlackRock’s.

However, it should be specified that the largest spot Bitcoin ETF in the world is Grayscale’s GBTC, but in fact it is an existing fund since 2013 that has raised over 28 billion dollars over more than 10 years. It was converted into an ETF last Wednesday, and in two days it lost almost 580 million dollars of AUM.

Note that VanEck’s HODL ETF has only raised 10 million dollars since its launch, even though it had already raised another 76 million before the launch. 

BlackRock’s advertising and the dominance of boomers in the new spot Bitcoin ETFs

These data seem to clearly indicate that the market for Bitcoin spot ETFs is dominated by boomers, or at least by older investors. 

It is unlikely that commercials have played a key role in these days, but they might in the future. 

It is possible, however, that the same sponsors have privately promoted these new investment products to their main clients, even though, for example, BlackRock had only raised 10 out of the 500 million dollars that currently make up the AUM of its ETF before its IPO. 

Moreover, millennials and GenZ definitely prefer crypto exchanges much more, as the trading volumes speak for themselves from this point of view. 

In the first two days of trading of the new ETFs on Bitcoin spot, they have accumulated a total volume of about 7 billion dollars, while in the same period on crypto exchanges, BTC trading volumes were nearly 90 billion dollars. 

So the majority of this market is still dominated mainly by millennials and GenX, especially on crypto exchanges, while ETF stock exchanges are mainly carried out by boomers and only partially by GenX. GenZ, on the other hand, is likely to be marginal in this ranking, as they have limited capital to invest.