Crowdsourcing what–? If you haven’t heard of this term, then WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?!? Crowdsourcing refers to hiring a lot of people for a task that’s normally done by an individual. It’s slowly gaining momentum, and is fast becoming one of the most popular buzzwords in many online companies today. The reason is simple: it has saved them a lot of money time and time again. So maybe you’re as skeptic as a tight peanut butter jar; but you’ll believe us after reading these seven companies who used it for their business model—and actually succeeded.
PickyDomains.com Finding a domain name is easy; but finding the right one for your company is way more difficult. Enter PickyDomains—the site who will do the hard work for you. Just deposit $50 and give exactly what you want (such as keywords, extension, and desired length)—and you’re all done. All you have to do is wait for their 44,000 “virtual wordsmiths” to come up with the right name especially made for you. Once you find a good one, 40-60% of your payment will go to that lucky person who made the suggestion. But here’s the juicy part: you get your money back if you didn’t get to choose a name; it’s as simple as that. PickyDomains also does slogans, so you should definitely check them out.
Want something pretty and inexpensive? Go to 99Designs.com. This site will do everything for you, from creating logos to buttons—to even web designing. The minimum fee for a project is $150, with 40,000 designers wanting to do the project for you. So all you “we-charge-by-the-hour” digital artists can go straight back to their little drawing boards—and sulk.
When it comes to stock photographs, audio clips, and video footages, iStockPhoto.com does it best. It’s not your typical website, but if your work involves a lot of media, then this crowdsourcing resource would definitely be good for you. It’s less ideal, however, when it comes to their strange credit system; but if you’re willing to overlook that, then everything will be smooth-sailing for you until the end.
Microjobs, anyone? No, it’s not a software; it’s actually another crowdsourcing resource you can use with anything that needs social participation. Let’s say you posted a YouTube video and wanted it to have a lot of votes. What you do is hire Microworkers.com to hire individuals to add the votes for you (10 cents per upvote). Similarly, you can ask their team of “microjobbers” to leave comments in your blog, add your site to social bookmarks, or even make you a “friend” in a Facebook or Twitter account. Yes, this might cause the wrath of moral purists, but hey, it’s better than hiring fake paparazzi to follow you around—like some female reality stars do from time to time (Sshh!).
Do you feel like throwing your existing project out of your window? Maybe RedesignMe.com can help. They will scrap everything inch by inch and put your project back together again. They also offer other services, like creative consulting, market research, knowledge management, and many more. What you’re doing here basically is hiring the help of outsiders to become co-creators of your product or service. And who knows what might come up when you share ideas together?
Tired of those nasty ad agencies who ask you to pay gargantuan sums of money just to get some exposure? Then Poptent is here to the rescue. The site prides itself as the best social network for animators, actors, commercial videographers, and directors. What’s more, you only need to shell out $5,000-$10,000 to get an ad spot that even Madison Avenue will really like.
Picture a call center that’s not a call center—that’s LiveOps.com. They let you hire individuals to receive and make calls for you. The company has a screening process that gets the best people on the job; what’s more, they offer competitive rates, so the free agents are happy. And we all know that happy callers mean satisfied customers.
Author: David Deprice is a blogger at MadConomist.com. He is currently involved with two startups, Bloove.com and MyClasses.org.