Have you seen an increase or decrease in participation by people looking to engage in crowdsourcing opportunities?
For this question I turned to several experts who deal directly with this issue, leading agencies that help connect brands with the crowd.
Here's Wil Merritt from Zooppa: "Significant increase. Some people are learning how to make a living through crowdsourcing creative, and many others just enjoy the opportunity to participate and engage with the brands they love as a social media activity." Wil brings up an interesting point. Often we focus on the professional ad creative or graphic designer and how crowdsourcing is hurting their industries. But many of the participants are merely brand fans with no agenda other than having some fun.
Sam Reid of Guided offered: "It's been a pretty steady increase in people getting in touch with Guided. We do a project which someone finds interesting and they ask to sign up. However we have a defined criteria / benchmark. We don't need 1000 copywriters or graphic designers for instance. We need the right type of person with a required skill set who plays nicely but has a clear understanding of cultural stuff beyond advertising. It's credible mass not critical mass." Again, a critical distinction - sourcing the right people rather than just the most people.
Claudia Batten of Victors & Spoils shared what's happening out in Colorado: "We are seeing an increase in the number of people looking to participate in crowdsourcing opportunities. We are seeing this on the client side and the creative side with incredible growth in our creative participants in our crowd (or creative department as we look at it) alongside increasing interest from brands. When we started Victors & Spoils we quickly climbed to a crowd of 700 creative professionals which has steadily increased to now almost 4,000 members. We see a lot of interest from people who want to expand their current creative duties, stretch their creative legs as it were. We also take great pains to attract interesting clients with interesting work, which really motivates the great creatives who are always inspired to work on interesting briefs. We also see a lot of creatives opt in to self-select the client work they want to do, which really resonates with our clients as they want to hear from people who are passionate about their brand." So, more participants but also a level of discernment for some sector of the participants.
A small sampling, but clearly one that shows that crowdsourcing continues to not only grow, but grow in sophistication, not only from agencies like Zooppa, Guided and V&S, but also from the brands and people looking to participate. Those factors all bode well for the continued growth of crowdsourcing.