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The crowdsourced customer journey

10.04.2013
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Whilst you probably have a very good relationship with your employees (hopefully anyway), when you outsource the production of ideas and insights to the crowd, you’re inevitably interacting largely with strangers.

As such, there is likely to be various stages someone goes through when they interact with your crowdsourcing campaign:

  1. Discovery stage - At this stage, the individual or team are finding out about you, so it’s important that they gain a strong understanding of the aim of the project.  This could come from your own website or from third party sites such as blogs, social media or the press.
  2. Investigation stage – Next, the participants will be looking to find out more information about the campaign.  This will include more detail about the aims and ambitions for the program, what the entry conditions are like, what the prize for success will be, how intellectual property will be handled, and of course whether this is something they can successfully contribute to.
  3. Participation stage – The participation stage will see the user begin their contributions, whether this is submitting a solution to a problem or even voting on the submissions of others.  This stage needs to be user friendly and engaging to create a community amongst users.
  4. Experience stage – The next stage will see feedback given as to the success of their submissions.  This stage is critical for the long-term health of the relationships you’re building with participants.  If you get this stage wrong then it’s unlikely that you will have gained a supporter for life.
  5. Supporter stage – Which feeds into the fifth and final stage, which is where your participants evolve and become staunch advocates for both you as a company and the crowdsourcing process you went through together.  Users at this stage can potentially be used in promotional work for future campaigns.

And so the cycle is complete, with advocates from previous campaigns feeding into the awareness building for future campaigns.  These five stages document the process most of your crowdsourced participants will go through in their engagement with you.  Make sure you get each stage right.

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