There’s no question that crowd-sourcing is a prominent theme of Web 2.0. With the advent of website services such as Kickstarter, many inventions and projects that otherwise would never have seen the day of light have come to fruition due to masses of people offering micro-donations.
However, crowdsourcing doesn’t always work – no matter how good the idea may be. Case in point: “Let’s Jump In” – a promising, multi-platform way, for live events to broadcast to multiple platforms. It seems that, in spite of Web 2.0′s many advances, self-marketing is still an important part of any new venture.
Let’s NOT Jump In
Jumpin was a project that was trying to raise funding through Fundageek. (Fundageek is a crowdsourcing site similar to Kickstarter, but focused on technology projects). Jumpin sought to “create a new online dimension of live event experiences, and revolutionise the industry worldwide.” Check out their promotional video below:
I stumbled across this project recently and got excited about its potential for church-related events such as denominational conferences, continuing education opportunities, and a plethora of other travel-required religious events. I might have even contributed some money toward its completion … until I realized the deadline was already up.
It was then that I realized crowdsourcing doesn’t always work. This got me thinking:
What makes a crowdsourced project successful, and what makes one fail?
Certainly, the website you choose has something to do with it. Fundageek, while a nice idea, has a total of 35 projects listed on its site (and that includes ones such as “Lets Jump In” that have already passed without being fully funded). Many of the projects are asking for a small fraction of what Kickstarter projects tend to ask for, which leads to the general conclusion that Fundageek doesn’t receive much traffic. Yet it is listed as one of Mashable’s “60 Digital Media Resources You May Have Missed“.
This leads to lesson #1: If you want to successfully fund your crowdsourced project … use Kickstarter. Internet companies, it seems, have started to find themselves falling into the trappings of traditional industry where large conglomerates with mega-bucks are the ones that have the resources to survive.
The second lesson to learn is marketing. If you want a project to succeed, you can’t just put it up on a website and hope people will find it. In fact, this is what Web 2.0 is all about. According to www.worldwidewebsize.com, there are 7.56 billion (yes, with a “b”) webpages online today. No longer does the web represent “if you build it, they will come”. Instead, you must market your project with intensity. Use social media, forum/blog comments, traditional marketing, and any other marketing source you can. You don’t need to cover every marketing method available, but you need to use a multi-faceted approach to get the word out.
Certainly, there are other lessons to be learned from failed crowdsourced projects. But site choice and marketing are definitely two of the primary ones.
What other lessons have you learned from the advent of crowdsourcing trends?
Drop us a comment and let us know.