Take Crowdsourcing as an example. Now we can tap into the wisdom of the online crowd, and work with our customers in ways never before imagined. With the help of our online community we can gather great content, collect new ideas and even create new products.
There are some great cases of crowdsourcing out there, including some of the more well known:
– Wikipedia : Probably the most famous example. Wikipedia is the worlds’ largest encyclopedia, with over 2,4 million articles and 175,000 authors.
– Threadless : The online T-shirt store with a twist – Users can submit ideas for T-Shirts, and the most popular are printed and added to the company’s product range.
– iStockphoto : iStockphoto completely re-invented the stock photography game with their online library of user-submitted, royalty free images.
Others are taking the idea of crowdsouring a step further. Including US based brewery called BeerBankroll, who are experimenting with involving the community to fund and manage their company.
How do they do it?
The first step is the Crowdfunding. Beerbankroll are recruiting members (50,000 to start with), who will contribute $US 50 to get the project up and running.
Once BeerBankroll has raised $100,000, the Crowdmanaging kicks in. The BeerBankroll community will then be involved in actively running the business. Members can submit product ideas and vote on management decisions. They can have a say in everything from the brand name, company logo, product design, product mix, marketing plan, advertising and sponsorship.
The company profits are then divided by three: One third is paid to members. One third goes back to the company. One third goes to charity.
If the experiment works, BeerBankroll will have an army of 50,000 beer drinking brand evangelists to help them spread the word.
Who wouldn’t want that?