In this story on which t-shirt competitions are online crowdsourcing design I chatted a bit about what online t-shirt competitions are out there using crowdsourcing to source designs for amazing t-shirt designs by leveraging the spirit of competition, the ability to showcase design and - of course - offer a whackload of cash.
Not familiar to what crowdsourcing is all about?
A great place to learn all about Social Media and Crowdsourcing is CommonCraft
This video should help you understand why crowdsourcing is so powerful :
Wow - the Commoncraft guys are great! They really know how to make things simple and explain fairly complex issues in Plain English.
The interesting this is that this is the sort of business that is a prime example of people making great cash just because crowdsourcing platforms like t-shirt competitions exist. Just by the merit of being able to offer a service based on this sort of platform - they can create a great business leveraging it in an indirect way.
But my main focus today is to look at what companies are using a t-shirt competition online to generate marketing and interest in other services or products. So in other words - these are companies who loved crowdsourcing and t-shirt competitions so much that they use them to create interest in completely different services and products.
Why? Because everyone loves a great t-shirt and the spirit of competition… and the cash;)
So take a company I have mentioned before : Danwei - so what does Danwei do? Danwei is a Chinese media, advertising, and urban life online mag of sorts.
So the crazy thing is that when you run this google search for the phrase ‘t-shirt competition’ you would exoect to see the likes of Springleap.com, TeeFury, Design By Humans, Threadless and so on. NOPE - Holding tight in 6th position is Danwei.
So for Danwei the power of crowdsourcing a t-shirt design via a competition is very obvious in terms of marketing. This keyword alone features 158 000 000 results on Google! Wow!
Now while the Winning artist’s t-shirt is sold at Plastered t-shirts (a really crummy t-shirt online portal - the designs are really wanting), and I ASSUME the artist will get some sort of royalty - the clear greatest advantage is the huge exposure. Sad that the art is - ahem - not - that - great Well - it is a corporate t-shirt, I guess!
In the 7th place on Google for the search “t-shirt competition” you will find Google’s site for the Lunar X PRIZE t-shirt competition - yup Google are offering a US$30 000 000 to the first private team to send a robot to the moon that toddles along for 500m and successfully sends video and stills back to Earth.
What it has to o with t-shirts and crowdsourcing designs for them - ehhhhhhhhhhhhh. Nothing. Except generating interest and marketing!
The prize was not substantial - basically a US$250 Gift Certificate to Cafe Press - so the prize was not substantial - but the accolade will be when they announce the winner and their name is toted all around Google and worn by loads of people. (Still think the prize was a bit stingy. 1. Cash is KING. 2. t-shirt design entrants would expect a bit more from this sort of endeavor)
Even Moodle ( a course management system development site) had a t-shirt design competition to generate exposure and marketing.
One of the more famous t-shirt competitions by a company not involved with t-shirts or design as their core product or service, was one recently held by Firefox when they launched their new v3.0 of their browser.
They had a massive response and, once again, the main prize for both Firefox and the winning artist was massive marketing and exposure, while a cool tee design was crowdsourced as well.
Now moving slightly away from the companies, but rather a very savvy political figure we all know and love : Barak Obama! Yes - there is a site teesbythepeople which hosted a competition for official Barak Obama t-shirt whereby they crowdsourced hundreds of designs as a savvy political marketing strategy which allowed artists and GQ Public to really get involved.
Very cool! - This is the first time that I have seen such a clever and savvy move from a political candidate - get the people who are interested in you and support your position to get involved in designing the t-shirt the supporters will wear. Wonderful!
So in short - the t-shirt competition platform has leveraged crowdsourcing design not just for companies selling t-shirts as core products, but for companies who use them as major spinoffs for marketing and exposure strategies.
It’s a brave new world for the previously bare chested.