While it’s clear that crowdsourcing offers an inexpensive, fast and fun way to get tasks done for your business, there are some best practices to consider in order to make the most of it. There are many legal implications for some types of work that you may not have considered, so always reflect on every aspect of each job before using crowdsourcing to fill your needs.
To ensure that anything you do via crowdsourcing goes smoothly, here are some tips to make it work.
1. Be specific and give details – No matter what type of project you’re crowdsourcing, be it a business task or a request for funding, it’s important to be very specific with the details. Don’t leave anything to assumptions for the very best results.
2. Break it down – If it’s a task, break every part down to small bites and have more than one person work on it. You’ll get better results, and it’ll get done faster. If you’re asking for funding or answers, break down what you’ll do with the money, and explain why you need answers.
3. Ask questions – It’s OK to ask questions of your audience as well as of the community you’re seeking crowdsourcing from. Questions always lead to more questions, which leads to more answers which leads to a better end result.
4. Communicate clearly – Try to use the language that your audience uses. If your project has specific industry jargon and you understand it, use that language to attract the right audience to your project. If you don’t know the right language, you’re in danger of not communicating your needs clearly. If necessary, find someone who can help you.
5. Create a realistic budget – Don’t be selfish and stingy. Even with crowdsourcing the old adage “you get what you pay for” is still true. Base your prizes, rewards, and fees on what you truly feel is fair for what you’re asking.
6. Promote your project – Be sure to spread the word about any projects you’re crowdsourcing to your own network of followers, friends, and associates so that you can get more participants that relate to you well. Don’t only rely on the system you’re using, even if it’s a great one. Tell everyone about your project.
7. Make rewards count – This is most important when you are asking for crowdfunding. Create rewards that make sense and that add value to the people who are donating to your cause. It will help you feel good about what you’re doing as well as improve your results.
8. Give credit where credit is due – Instead of taking all the credit for great results, give credit to the people who have created the success for you. Very few projects require you to take all the credit outside of ghostwriting projects. People love being praised and getting credit and when they know they’ll get it, they’ll try harder.
9. Let the audience vote – If possible it’s great to use the crowd for creating the project but also for choosing whose project wins the big prize. Your audience will love being involved in the projects from beginning to end and even choosing the final result. What’s more, it will help you save time, especially when it comes to creative projects such as logo design. No need for you to go through all the entries if someone else is choosing the winner.