Crowdsourcing is an effective strategy for retailers to engage with their customers and gain valuable insights into their preferences and needs. However, successfully activating a crowd for crowdsourcing in the retail sector requires a thoughtful and strategic approach.

At SmartSpotter, our primary goal is to keep the Crowd happy and motivated. That's why, for us, it is so essential to make sure there are enough tasks available for the Crowd by managing the balance between the number of spots available and the size of the network. 

However, keeping the Crowd active goes far beyond having tasks available. It is a job that requires maintaining active communication with spotters, encouraging them, and expeditiously supporting them.

Here are some tips that we have found helpful in keeping the Crowd motivated and active: 

Clearly define your goals and identify your target audience

Before launching a crowdsourcing campaign, it's important to define your goals and objectives. What do you hope to achieve through crowdsourcing? Are you looking to generate new product ideas, improve customer experience, or gather insights on market trends? Defining your goals will help you identify the type of Crowd you need to target and the specific questions you want to ask. Next, you need to identify the audience you want to engage with. Who are your customers? What are their interests and preferences? Where do they spend their time online? This will help you identify the channels and platforms you need to use to reach your target audience.

At SmartSpotter, we first define a strategy with our clients and then design the campaign that best suits both spotters and retailers. Each assignment is different and should be generated through curation of what we want to achieve and the questions to be asked.

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Create a compelling call-to-action

Once you've identified your target audience, you must create a compelling call to action to motivate them to participate in your crowdsourcing campaign. This could be a contest, a survey, or a challenge that offers an incentive or reward for participation.

To keep spotters motivated, we have a reward system for each assignment. The payment per assignment/spot is based on the degree of difficulty, location or length of the assignment. The number of spots already completed and the number of spots still available in the app can play a role too. The factors that are significant vary per assignment.

But not only that. When an assignment requires purchasing a product, we always cover the entire cost, so the Spotter gets free stuff!

We also have a SmartPoints system, which determines Spotter's ranks. Each rank allows the Crowd to accept more assignments simultaneously and gives more time to complete them.

Leverage social media and provide regular updates

Social media is a powerful tool for engaging with customers and activating a crowd for crowdsourcing. Use social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to promote your crowdsourcing campaign, share updates, and encourage participation.

In our social networks, we are concerned about engaging with the Crowd. So we launch challenges, publish tips to complete the spots in the best way possible, congratulate our best spotters and so on. 

It's also important to provide regular updates to your Crowd to keep them engaged and motivated. Share insights and ideas that have been generated through the crowdsourcing campaign and acknowledge the contributions of your crowd members.

Provide clear and concise instructions!

Make sure that the instructions for participating in your crowdsourcing campaign are clear and easy to understand. Provide examples and guidelines to help participants know what you're looking for.

Each of our assignments is carefully designed to be clear, concise and illustrative. In addition, we ensure they are formulated in understandable language, along with example pictures that allow the Spotter to understand what we are looking for. 

Use personal reminders!

Our method of informing Spotters about nearby tasks involves using automated messages based on their location. In addition, we send notifications to groups of Spotters via email or the app about relevant tasks that are coming up. While these methods are helpful, personal communication is also crucial. Therefore, personalised messages sent through the app, email, or phone are highly valued by Spotters and effectively keep them engaged.

Don't forget about direct communication and fast support

The support teams prioritise promptly reviewing tasks to ensure that Spotters receive their rewards as soon as possible. This rapid assessment provides advantages for both Spotters and clients.

By reviewing submissions quickly, we can educate Spotters and prevent them from making the same mistakes in the future. If we observe multiple members of the Crowd making the same error, we will modify the task description, if necessary, to ensure that the client's desired result is achieved successfully.

We maintain an active line of communication with the Spotters through email. As a result, we receive feedback, complaints and claims to improve our service and solve doubts and problems with the assignments.


By following these steps, retailers can successfully activate a crowd for crowdsourcing and gain valuable insights and ideas to improve the customer experience, generate new products, and stay ahead of the competition.

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