[Today’s guest articles was written by Clancy Clarke.]
You may have been hearing a new word recently. It’s “crowdsourcing”, and if you think the concept is too far-fetched, you might want to think again. Many heads are often better than one, and a group of individuals from outside a company will often perform business-related tasks more efficiently than could a single in-house employee.
Jeff Howe from WIRED coined the term in 2006:
“Crowdsourcing is the act of taking a job traditionally performed by a designated agent and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people in the form of an open call.”
When it comes to creating the perfect logo, the model works especially well. Design crowdsourcing platforms work on a contest model, where each designer submit entries based on the design brief you create—so holding a design contest can be an easy way to attract the talent you need which matches the specifications you set.
Why a Logo Design Contest Makes Sense
You already know the importance of a great logo for conveying your business’s identity. You’ve probably spent a few hours of your own mentally designing one, but contrary to popular belief, great minds don’t always think alike. If you hold a contest, chances are good that one or more participants will surprise you with the perfect logo concept. When that happens, you’ll know it right away.
Mr. Malik from Cad and Coffee said this of crowdsourcing:
“Crowdsourcing is easy and simple to use, from submitting a brief, design reviews and picking a winner. Great from small or start-up businesses.”
Attracting Talent from Around the Globe
The world is full of capable up-and-coming graphics designers, most of whom you might never know existed. A logo design contest can help you attract some of the best creative minds and brightest lights in the field without expending the time and money otherwise required to search for them yourself.
Promotion is Key
If designers never hear about your contest, they won’t be able to enter it. To attract participation, you’ve got to get the word out. Collaborating with a design crowdsourcing platform is one great way to do that with the minimal difficulty.
Crowdsourcing platforms often include design brief promotion to improve the exposure and reach of your project to the design community. Having your brief appear at the top of the available project list, on social channels and including personal designer invites are all tactics that are built into design crowdsourcing platforms to improve designer participations rates and get the most of the crowd for your business.
Once your message is out there, you’ll be accessing the brainpower of each designer that chooses to take part.
Give Them Some Encouragement
The prospect of entering a contest can be discouraging at the outset. Those who agree to participate realize that they will be engaging in hard creative endeavor with no guarantee of reward. Many will be struggling artists desirous of getting their names out there. In addition to any monetary prize, the promise of some recognition in the form of free press will increase their desire to join in.
Tell Them What You Want
Regardless of their level of talent, contestants are not mind readers. They can’t give you what you need unless they know what that is. To be clear about what you want your logo to convey, you’ll have to tell them in definitive terms:
- The purpose of your business. What products do you sell, what services do you provide?
- Your moral and ethical stance. How do you want customers to feel about your business?
- Whether your logo should be serious or playful.
- Your company’s color scheme, if any.
- Your targeted customer base. Men, women and children often respond differently to the same motif.
Greg Cook said he posted a simple design brief, by providing the right information he was about to get a fantastic result from the crowd:
“My brief was very simple, my budget modest yet within an hour of listing the project I had received a design. Each morning I would awake to another list of images, in the 10 days there were more than 84 designs received from around the globe.”
Cook went on to say:
“As fortune would have it, the winning design was the one I first received an hour after listing the project. I want to comment the ease and outstanding quality crowdosurcing provides to businesses.”
Also, be clear about whether and how you might intend to work with the winner in the future. Designers are encouraged by the prospect of an ongoing relationship, so outlining any possible future design work in your brief will increase designer participation and drive the highest level of creativity. On that note, be sure to be clear about how you intend to use the logo, and be sure you cover who will own the rights to use the logo and when they will have those rights.
Participants in your design contest are sure to have some questions, and they will be looking to you for answers. It often helps to post a fact sheet which answers common questions about your business along with your design brief. Do your best to answer every inquiry that you anticipate, and update the information regularly when new concerns arise.
Crowdsourcing the Logo of Your Dreams
When all goes well, the power of the crowd can dream up a surprisingly creative logo in a shorter time than you imagine. All you need to do is attract people’s interest, and a well-run design contest can do that for you. The logo you obtain with this method could make you the winner in the end.
About the Author
Clancy is the Organic Search manager at DesignCrowd, a design crowdsourcing platform making crowdsourcing more accessible for small business. Clancy has over 7 years of online marketing experience, a passion for analytics and a degree in Petroleum Engineering from the University of New South Wales.