What if your startup became a unicorn thanks to the crowd?

Can you create a monthly quota of useful content within a week? The annual rate? Maybe you can produce out more than 800 ideas during one brainstorming session? And, maybe, your audience itself is willing to create useful content for your company?

Studies show that between 65% and 75% of new businesses are far from successful and fail within 1 year. Luck is often not on the side of the company that has decided to launch a new product or service. The #1 reason is that businesses are not really in touch with customers through deep dialogue. Crowdholding fills this gap by connecting the crowd with entrepreneurs, allowing you to give feedback and ideas in return for future revenue.

How to use crowdholding in your business?

Crowdholding can be used to achieve a wide variety of goals: solving a specific problem, creating content, generating new ideas, conducting peer review, etc. At the same time, the competence of the people involved in the project does not matter much. Here are just a few examples of what can be done with this tactic:

  • Ask customers to pass a questionnaire with questions to improve your service/product. Offer them something in return, for example, a small discount or a cut of future revenue (ie Crowdshares).
  • Invite the users of your site to participate in the contest for the best idea. Promise the winner a % of future revenue (ie Crowdshares).
  • Ask customers to provide feedback on your product or service. The authors of the best or most creative receive the biggest cut of the future revenue (Crowdshares).

Fortune 500 companies actively use the wisdom of the crowd. In 2010, the number of micro-tasks performed in this way increased by 496% and still growing.

At first glance, you might think that crowdholding is too complicated to manage it as part of your marketing campaign. But once you figure out the variety of forms that it can take, you will most likely change your mind. With the help of crowdholding, you can:

  • Strengthen the audience’s commitment. The customer undertakes to accomplish a task, generates ideas, discusses them with friends, disseminates information about the company and places the result on your site on his behalf. Thus, he motivates himself to produce a high-quality result and becomes an advocate of your company. The strategy of crowdholding includes the involvement of hundreds of such performers.
  • Improve current products and services. The information gathered within the framework of crowdholding can significantly improve your product and positively affect the growth of the whole business.
  • Increase the overall reputation of your company. Involving a huge number of people actively involved in a project, a constant discussion of the activities of your company and your products creates a positive public response, and also draws media attention to your activities.

Main benefits of Crowdholding include:

  • Crowdholding can be used in any industry and business of any size.
  • By requesting feedback from customers, you receive very important information for the development of your business, product or service.
  • You receive the best ideas offered by a large number of people and do not rely on the creativity of one person or one agency.
  • This strategy helps you to see firsthand how your customers think.

How to satisfy a huge number of employees?

Crowdholding campaigns are not primarily for the faint-hearted. At first, it will seem to you that you are trying to control the unmanageable. Over time, you will become stronger in this belief. Either way, you must have 2 qualities in order to succeed — total commitment to your idea and courage.

The following tips will help you make this process as comfortable and effective as possible:

Keep in touch with people. Most people who want to participate in such a project, like to give. Continuous contact with the audience ensures their ability to give and your ability to take. Make sure that you have a common place where the audience can meet and communicate with you and with each other, whether it’s an internal corporate network or a private Facebook page. It is necessary that they feel involved.

Listen. The main advantage of crowdholding is the opportunity to share ideas, but if communication is not two-way, you can be sure that your audience will be able to convey this unpleasant fact to you.

Answer. Always listen before you answer. You can not claim that you are listening to an audience if it does not feel heard. If someone has a great idea, encourage the contribution of this person. If there is a problem, find the best way to solve it. Let people in your community understand that they are not a faceless mass for you.

Be honest. Hiding any information will cause anger of the crowd, whether it is the removal of comments left by community members or the constantly lagging answers to current questions.

Empathize. By putting yourself in their place, you can see the situation from the position of your audience. This will allow you to communicate with them more clearly and sympathetically.

Crowdholding is not the most popular content marketing strategy. However, if you have enough courage to organize a similar campaign, your marketing can reach a radically new level. Maybe the future successful development of your company is already ripening in the minds of your customers, and it remains only to get in touch with them and ask the right questions?

We are interested in your opinion and feedback regarding the crowdholding concept.

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