We've seen a lot of innovation over the last 5 years in terms of marketing, branding, advertising, and the like.  An announcement today has just added more proof to the pudding that the advertising industry, despite decline in revenues, isn't going anywhere any time soon.  A new agency has just emerged out of Colorado calling themselves Victors & Spoils.  How have they differentiated themselves in an already crowded agency environment?  They've created the first, to my knowledge and theirs, creative agency based on the principles of crowd-sourcing.

What is crowd-sourcing you might be asking yourself?  The best way to put it is "distributed problem solving."  For example, if a company wants to design a logo, they can post a contest online asking people for their biggest and brightest ideas.  When I was in college, my business law professor was starting his own LLC dealing with restaurants.  He gave the class an optional assignment for bonus points to design a letterhead and logo for his business.  That right there is crowd-sourcing.  
A lot of agencies have been experimenting with crowd-sourcing lately.  Looking at the benefits, it's not hard to see why.  It's essentially one of the most cost-effective marketing solutions.  It can tap into a wide array of talent with almost no strings attached and can communicate a brand across an entire online community.  Sure, it can take jobs away from creatives, but I guess that is more or less the nature of the beast.  

So what is Victors and Spoils doing to change the game?

They have created an advertising agency, a digital platform, and an online community for brands to interact with creatives.  They've brought to light the idea of the virtual creative brief.  Clients post a brief on their platform, and designers can compete for the brief by designing creative around it.  We're eliminating a lot of steps here folks.  It is scary, that's for sure, but it's also very smart.  If you think about the traditional agency, you have account coordinators who gather information, account planners who research, account executives who meet with clients, designers who make logos, and copywriters who make messages.  With Victors and Spoils you have a client, an agent, and an opportunity for thousands of creatives who not only know design, but also know copy.  

Their first brief since starting the company has been to have users design a logo for their company.  In this case, they are offering cash incentives for the top five designs.  In the future, the incentives could be almost anything.  

In a time when innovation and communication is key, I think Victors and Spoils is really going to make a name for themselves.  It also helps that the company is comprised of two CP + B veterans who bring a lot of credibility to the name.  As a recent graduate and young mind in the industry, this rapid change in the landscape of advertising can be a little scary, but I have to admit, it makes the industry as a whole look a lot more entertaining, interesting, and inspiring:  three things most ad men can't live without.

Comments and opinions always welcome.  I like this idea, but maybe I'm just running with the wrong crowd.

Find out more at the company's website
Victors and Spoils
10/29/2009 06:49:16 am

I think this is a great idea, and something I haven't heard of or seen before. Getting the public involved brings new ideas to the table, ideas that the agency otherwise might not have come up with. This is definitely innovative, but I'm sure other agencies will follow suit.


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