GeniusRocket (@geniusrocket) has walked away from the contest world. Our business is still based on a foundation of crowdsourcing, but there’s a better way to source content through a creative crowd.
We have found a better way to crowdsource: what we call curated crowdsourcing. Coined by us, this term is obviously still based heavily on a crowdsourced model. But we have added features that many brands, agencies and creatives have long wished were a part of the crowdsourcing approach to advertising.
This isn’t to say we feel superior to contests. Contests serve a purpose as a marketing and promotional tool. However, if a client’s goal is ensuring high quality video content every time, then curated crowdsourcing is the way to go. The difference, really, comes down to a guarantee of quality over guaranteed quantity.
There are three main differences between GeniusRocket and the contest model.
1. Only the best ideas.
The new GeniusRocket model has added iterative client feedback that ensures only the best ideas are produced. The model is broken into quick elimination stages: the pitch, a storyboard round, and finally full production. Between each round clients can give direct feedback to the creative teams to make sure their concept is moving exactly in the direction they want.
This improvement addresses a major complaint both clients and creatives have had with the contest model. For clients, contests create a “take it or leave it” situation, reviewing a large amount of content and hoping there is at least some quality work there. For creatives, contests encourage speculative work (“spec” work), where creators create content in hopes that a client might be interested, with no guarantee of pay. That’s a lot of risk on both sides.
We’ve killed spec work, meaning no one works for free. And our iterative model ensures artists and professional production teams have a fair chance of being selected, while the client receives only the best content.
2. A highly selective creative community.
GeniusRocket is no longer a 20,000+ community. Instead, we’re proud to tout that our community is now a tight-knit, hand-picked, fully vetted creative community of just over 300 professional creatives and creative teams.
We have made a conscious decision to limit the community to only the best of the best. With professional production teams rather than amateurs, it’s no longer about sifting through the bad content to find the good—it’s about sifting through the good content to find the great.
3. Brand strategy under lock and key.
The final addition to the model is privacy. The GeniusRocket platform is 100% private. Creative teams apply to be given access to the platform. Only once accepted into the creative community are they given access to client projects.
Contests are always risky for brands due to the fact that they are public. Brands are required to broadcast their creative needs and strategy publicly for competitors to see. And of course any submissions, good, bad, or mediocre, are viewable to the public.
Additionally, each GeniusRocket project is wrapped around a non-disclosure agreement (NDA). Working with professional production teams, everyone loses when privacy and confidentiality are not respected within the curated model. With a binding, legal agreement, both parties put their reputation on the line if they don’t fulfill their end of the agreement.
It Just Makes Sense
There’s no secret sauce in our approach. In fact, most people would say everything we’ve changed makes perfect sense.
We’ve run hundreds of contests. We’ve learned what works and what doesn’t. And we’ve taken everything we’ve learned from those contests and applied those lessons to our new model. Where GeniusRocket stands above the rest is that we have taken all that we’ve learned and put it into practice.
Our approach is paying off. Agencies and brands alike have tested our new model over the past nine months, with extraordinary results. It’s obvious, they prefer the professional creative community and privacy of this new evolution in crowdsourcing: curated, fair, private. In a word, GeniusRocket.