Posted October 2, 2012 by Steve Young

Crowdsourcing is fantastic. It allows companies to have the “crowd” work on a task or project for you. Jeff Howe, one of the first authors to employ the term, established that the concept of crowdsourcing depends essentially on the fact that because it is an open call to an undefined group of people, it gathers those who are most fit to perform tasks, solve complex problems and contribute with the most relevant and fresh ideas.

Here are some of my favorite crowdsourcing sites that I use to improve my marketing efforts.


Perfect for teams without a full-time designer on staff. 99designs allows you to have a group of designers compete for your project. Whether you need banners, landing pages or even help on your iPhone app, you’ll find a fantastic designer. The best part is designers submit their work first and you get to select your favorite. I’ve used 99designs for banners and iPhone apps and they’ve yet to disappoint.


Research shows that you have five seconds to make an impression on your visitor. Five Second Test helps you understand people’s first impressions of your designs. Here’s how it works. You upload a mock of your homepage or landing page, then decide if you want users to either click on your mock or recall the messaging. The click-through test allows you to see where users would click on your site given just five seconds. Whereas the recall test, users have to fill out a form and try to recall 5 things that they remember from your site. There’s a free plan where you’ll have to take a test yourself to have others take your test.


Simply put, Trada is a platform where SEM/PPC experts work on your campaign and only get paid if they exceed your CPA requirements. In normal English, you can have many folks work on your Google ads and you only pay them if they exceed your cost requirements. For example, let’s say you’re willing to pay $5 for every user that signs up for your site, the Trada experts then will have to find a way to get users to sign up for less than $5 and if they do that they keep the difference. Be aware that if your CPA is too low then no one will want to work on your campaign. They also have a minimum monthly spend of $3,000.


Another great tool to get live feedback from your site. With UserTesting, real live people visit and navigate your site while narrating their every move. Get feedback on initial reactions, navigation patterns and overall usability of your site. Plans start at $29/user for your first order.


About Steve Young

Steve Young is the Director of Product Marketing at SmartShoot. He enjoys writing about marketing, design and product development. Although he shares the same name as a famous quarterback he unfortunately does not share the same bank account, so please throw him a bone and share or comment on his posts. Connect with him on Twitter and Google+.

Keep in touch: @stevepyoung

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