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At Flying Fish Lab, we believe that breaking through is easier if you think like an outsider. A tool we use often to bring the Outside In is Creative Crowdsourcing. While there are several factors that affect the success of a Creative Crowdsourcing project, it all begins with a good brief.

Here are a few tips to help you write a brief that will inspire great work from your crowd:

1. Use their language

What’s your crowd’s composition? What’s their background, what “language” motivates them? Crowdsourcing for early-stage ideas usually means having a community with a diverse group of people. For this audience, using everyday language works best. Avoid using jargons or acronyms, as while these might impress your peers, these won’t help the community understand.

2. Let your one big problem motivate them to help

Sure, your challenge is multi-faceted, but to get the best quality output from the crowd, focus on the part that you need the crowd’s help on the most as the main deliverable, and the rest can be nice to haves. Share why this is a challenge for you and why they should care enough to help. Share examples if that will explain the context. Once you’ve written the brief, ask yourself, if you were in their shoes, does the problem stand out, and does it motivate you to help solve it?

3. Be there for them

While most platforms have limited ways of engaging with your community, let the community know that if they do have any questions with the brief, that you are there to help. On-going guidance is a good way to help creators nurture their ideas and develop them to their full potential. Your challenge in this process is to avoid giving individual feedback that will result in all ideas converging. This would reduce the benefit of your project which should be about getting a wide array of ideas for you to build on.

We also believe that brief writing should never be a form-filling exercise, but a template often helps us in guiding the crowd. To help you practice these tips, here are some guidelines you might find useful to brief your next crowdsourcing project.

Click here to download our complimentary guide.

Let us know if you’d like more tips on your business challenges by writing to, or subscribe to our newsletter for more interesting content.


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