Chapter 8

Building and Running Crowdsourcing Platforms

Regardless of the objective, every crowdsourcing venture shares similarities and necessitates the completion of certain steps. Every time you build, launch, and maintain a crowdsourcing platform, you will need to execute a specific process. This chapter details that process by providing an overview, and then describing how to choose your platform's objective and scope, analyze its target audience and media environment, design its structure and interface, build the technology behind it, market it, measure its success, and learn how to improve it.

Overview of the Process

From a technology standpoint, crowdsourcing platforms are easy to set up and launch. However, maintaining them and ensuring that they are successful are far more difficult. Due to the diffusion and low cost of social media and Web 2.0 technology, almost anyone can build a crowdsourcing platform or hire developers to do so without breaking the bank. Of course, the more complex the platform, the more technology expertise is required and the harder it gets. Still, the hardest parts about designing and maintaining platforms are the fuzzy details and factors that are difficult to make sense of and quantify. These include choosing the right participants with the appropriate access to technology, attracting them despite geopolitical or cultural issues, keeping them interested and motivated over a long period of time, ensuring their participation is proving valuable, ...

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