Outsource creativity-Pay per Idea.

If you wished that everytime you had a marketing problem, you could get marketing brains all over the world to “pitch” their ideas , you could choose the best one and only pay for the one you use, your wish has started taking shape on the web via www.bootb.com.

It will take many blows to the “agency” model for it to completely collapse. Big spending multinational clients will continue to want continuity in brand thinking and consistency in execution. However for the mid and small size businesses an ideas marketplace like bootb where you only pay if you use the idea while getting to choose from multiple solutions to your specific marketing problem/need, without paying high development costs/fees, can be very appealing. Even big brand names like LEGO, DISNEYLAND, PEUGEOT are already on the site with their briefs (Peugeot’s brief received 66 solutions).

This also has potential to bust whatever remains of the “creative” high ground occupied by the creative types. The next time your agency team comes with just one single concept/idea in response to your brief and tries to sell it to you as the right solution, while you shift and squirm in your seat thinking “can we see some more options, without breaking the bank”, you might be tempted to tap into bootb (incidentally bootb stands for Be Out Of The Box).

Freelance creatives and marketing consultants have existed for some time on the web offering their services at a fraction of the normal costs. Where bootb scores is, in giving clients a choice of solutions to the specific problem, at no incremental cost vs the fixed budget

The bootb concept is like an agency “pitch” with no fixed cost, with no committment to give the business to anybody and no obligation to continue working with the winning “agency” in the future. You risk nothing (except perhaps the loss of confidentiality with respect to your coming marketing plans, as your marketing needs are there for anyone registered on the site, to see via the brief. For e.g, I know via bootb that Puegeot is launching the new 308 in March in Russia). Think about it.

Bootb cannot replace the assigned agencies for obvious reasons. However as a source of multiple solutions/ideas against a defined brief it is a good resource (even for agencies). While (just like the agency system) there is no gurantee you will get the right solution, the difference is if you don’t like anything you don’t pay anything (unlike the agency system where the time sheet meter keeps ticking). Given their revenue model (10% of the fixed budget as their commission) and low fixed costs, I reckon they will be profitable soon.

The site design of bootb is “creative” and quite different. I like most of it, except the background color (black), which not only makes navigation a bit difficult, but is also symbolically against the idea of “out of box” thinking. The black hat in the 6 thinking hats created by the creativity guru De Bono stands for  caution. When you wear the black hat you try and see all the faults in a particular solution. But this is a minor executional niggle in what is essentially a great Idea!!

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7 responses to “Outsource creativity-Pay per Idea.

  1. So where do I sign up? I would love the opportunity to pitch an idea.

  2. I think it’s a brilliant idea to have business model like this! I think the right approach for a small business client could be to have ideas first then put it to the test on this site to see if the same answers would come from the professionals so as to reduce risks.

    But yeah, like you mentioned, confidentiality is a bit of a problem here since the whole thing is internet web-based.

    I like the way the website is designed by using the pink/red colour and graffiti style navigation, making the whole site and the business behind seems so full of passion. And when I checked out the Chinese site, I realised the whole wording in Chinese is quite cute, young and full of energy in terms tone and manner. Much much better and attractive than direct translation.

  3. Brilliant idea!!! I am also very amazed by the number of languages available on the website!

    As the coporate lifespan of marketing professionals get shorter and shorter and retirement age gets lower (well, at least in Asia I guess), project likes this can definitely provide these freelance (semi-retired) and yet highly experienced marketeers with an interesting option to further their post-retirement career.

    By the way, sometimes I do wonder how intellectual property (submitted proposals) can be protected in projects like this.

  4. Once I read your this article, it reminds me very much the 8 trends that I have found from trendwatching.com – CROWD MINING. BootB can be seen as Professional Crowd Mining concept which can help any marketer with the best and perhaps ‘out of box’ solution with lowest cost. I was inspired by the whole concept the founder had and certainly inspired by multiple choices of language.

  5. Agree with Alice’s point. I also worried about the intellectual property issue, given that on-line creators come from different parts of the world, but their ideas may not protected everywhere due to different law system. The website may face more complicated/international legal litigation in the future.

    I think the website could further strengthen its expertise on certain aspects, i.e. a focused core competence. Now it looks like a melting pot for everything. If such competence were created, it might encourage potential builders to try BootB service from small scale projects/executions.

    Another upside for this website is to learn from other industries’ brief in terms of : how do view their business, how do they intent to sell their serives, what’s the key insights, and how do they define their target consumers. That gives us a mirror image of how we are doing in daily business. Have we considered all marketing details? Do we have a good marketing plan / consumer insights / brief, etc.?

  6. I like the idea. I understand all the downsides mentioned by others. I worked with similar crown mining concept when I needed an artist to do storyboards for my wedding. Conventional agencies and free-lances quoted a fortune. So I went on-line and found http://www.guru.com , where you can post a brief and let artists from all over the world to bid for it, showing examples of their previous jobs. I got it done, my wedding guests liked it and it did not break my bank!

  7. Pingback: Creativity as commodity « Inspired Marketing

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