Corporate Eye

Crowdsourcing for Business and Brands – Infographic

I’ve written about crowdsourcing for business and brand building on the Corporate Eye blog before when I covered the story of the U.S. Department of the Interior turning to crowdsourcing for its new logo design and discussed the Yahoo! brand promise.

Now, it’s time to take a look at crowdsourcing visually – via a cool infographic.

As you can see in the infographic from BizMedia.com (click here or click on the image to open it in a new window, and then click on it again to see the full-size infographic), crowdsourcing can come in many forms and is used by a wide variety of companies. Whether a company turns to crowdsourcing for word-of-mouth marketing across the social web, logo design, writing, web development, or  research assistance, there is an audience of talented people willing to offer their opinions, expertise, and help to better enable those companies to build their brands and businesses.

These days, there is a significant amount of crowdsourced marketing and research done every day via the social web. When companies publish content and watch their audiences share and discuss that content, they can gain powerful publicity that can lead to sales as well as useful insight into people’s thoughts and opinions that can be applied to the company’s strategic planning processes. The opportunities to tap into the “crowd” are huge on the social web.

Many businesses and brands have evolved thanks to crowdsourcing. It could be argued that a site like The Huffington Post would never have grown so big and so quickly had it not been from the team of volunteers who wrote for the site and brought attention to it. Unfortunately, most of those people didn’t reap the benefits when AOL purchased The Huffington Post, which sheds light on a problem that businesses need to be very aware of when they embark on their own crowdsourcing projects.

We’re still in the infancy of crowdsourcing as it’s being used today and it is likely to continue to change in the future. The key to success is making sure you establish specific goals for your crowdsourced initiatives. Staying on track to reach those targets is what will separate the power players from the masses.

What do you think about the growth of crowdsourcing for helping businesses get work done without hiring employees or expensive companies to help them? What do you think of leveraging the social media crowd to boost your online marketing efforts? Are you engaging in either activity yet to build your brand and business? Leave a comment and share your opinion about crowdsourcing.

Image: BizMedia.com

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for Entrepreneur.com and Forbes.com, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as MSNBC.com, BusinessWeek.com, TodayShow.com, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.