What is Crowdsourcing? - Definition & Examples

Instructor: Trina Sampson
This lesson explores why crowdsourcing is a valuable tool for business and how it can be applied to marketing related tasks. Companies usually have an interest in crowdsourcing because it is free and allows their talent pool to grow.

Crowdsourcing Definition

Have you ever heard the word crowdsourcing? If you haven't, it's possible that you are familiar with the process of crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing is used as a collective intellectual gathering of information that comes from the public and is then used to complete a business-related task. In other words, businesses use an outsourcing task that's usually performed by an employee, staff, or contractor, to deliver to a crowd of people.

Imagine being in a crowd or group of people, and you are asked to gather a collection of information to complete a business-related task that's usually performed by a staff member or contractor from the prospective company. This information is used to make an open call to a broad community of people, either through collaboration or competition.

Examples of Crowdsourcing

You may have heard of or know of someone who has submitted/uploaded an image to a company in order for the company to use the image on a particular product or project. Companies such as Chiquita banana ask their customers to submit an image or design idea for the stickers that go on the bananas. This is crowdsourcing!

Imagine being a photographer or videographer and you would like to get images or videos recognized by the right person but you don't have the resources to make it happen. Well fortunately, nowadays companies like iStock Photo allow amateur photographers, videographers, and illustrators to upload their work and earn compensation from iStock Photo once the work is downloaded or purchased. This is also crowdsourcing!

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