Crowdsourcing, or soliciting ideas from communities, audiences, or large groups of people, is the boat I feel many marketers are on the dock watching pass by. In a world where the noise is deafening, it’s becoming more and more valuable — and strategic — to throw on your sailor suit and set sail on calmer seas where you allow the user to set the course.
When you crowdsource, you’re already successful by opening yourself up to:
- Increased engagement
- Idea and growth hacking
- Brand advocacy
- Market research
- User-generated content
By building and trusting in your audiences, you can crowdsource amazing content people WANT to read by constantly asking what they want. Then all you have to do is give the people what they want!
16 Ways To Crowdsource Your Way To Success
- Photos from clients successfully using your products
- Blog topics from your social audiences
- Ideas for your next contest or giveaway
- Most valued/wanted coupons
- Strategies for new pricing
- Experiences that your customers want repeated
- And even those experiences they don’t want repeated (LEARN from this!)
- Charitable giving
- Customer testimonials using creative platforms and channels, like a Vine video
- When/why/how they came across your brand (Market & Pipeline research)
- Polls & Surveys for better product placement
- A/B test ads (which do THEY — your audience — prefer?)
- Your next topic for a bootcamp or webinar
- Influencers: Then decide how they can be commissioned to better help your brand
- Keyword mining: Ask what words come to mind when thinking of your brand, company, products, etc.
- Pain points as they relate to your brand
While there are many ways to use crowdsourcing to gain a better understanding of:
- Your business
- Your brand
- Your audience
- Your would-be customers’ wants and needs
there are still some drawbacks to consider.
Where Crowdsourcing Gets Tricky
Chaos can ensue when we invite the world to “weigh in” on our business. It can also create:
- Zero participation
- Make sure you know what crowdsourcing ideas are most relevant to your business needs
- Ensure your audience or community is invested enough in your brand to implement crowdsourcing
- A data dump
- Sift through “status quo” ideas to find the diamond in the rough
- Lack of processes
- Know who is in charge of gathering the data, communicating the thank you and value of that data to the crowd, and then implementing the results
- Diluted messaging
- You can’t please everyone, so you’ll have to pick a view point and stick firmly with it
I hardly think the cons outweigh the pros when it comes to using your most valuable asset (your communities) to enhance the mission of your brand.
What do you think?
See you in the social sphere!