Oct 16, 2008
Relatively inexpensive logo, Web site, and other design collateral (a fancy word for stuff) is available via CrowdSpring, a Chicago-based but globally focused Internet design startup.
“On CrowdSpring a buyer posts a project, names their price, determines how long the project should last, and describes what it is they’re looking for. In turn, creatives submit actual work,” co-founder Mike Samson told me.
Wired and the Chicago Tribune have highlighted the project recently. As Eric Benderoff points out in the Tribune piece, it sounds like a war of all against all but actually because of the community dimension made possible by social media, the reverse occurs–designers actually end up working together more.
For example, a designer can become a client on a complex project for which she only has part of the necessary specialized expertise.For nonprofits, the bottom line is that as buyer, in other words, you get to name your price and what you want, set a deadline, then wait for the concepts to roll in and choose the one you like best for final polishing. A couple of rounds of alterations are reasonable but you don’t get to go back and forth a jillion times. To protect the creatives, buyers escrow the project fee to CrowdSpring when they initiate. For its services, the firm charges 15% of the total fee.“What we guarantee the buyers is choice,” Samson says. “We guarantee the buyers 25 entries to their project. … We think of this as a community of creatives and we give buyers access to this community.”
Mike is a former Columbia College Chicago TV department artist-in-residence who went on to found crowdSpring in May 2008 (he and his business partner Ross have been working on the concept since 2006).
They’ve posted more than 1,000 projects and paid out more than 200,000 in awards and we have 8,500 registered users–7,800 are creatives from 130 countries; the balance of the users are buyers from 32 countries.
Among nonprofits, he said a number of churches have taken advantage of the service; some of the creative folks in the community are talking about choosing a few deserving charities whose projects they could do for free as a community-service project, so that’s something else to check out!