While many of items seen on the runway at this year’s fashion week will eventually end up on the eBay when a broke stylista needs to pay her cell phone bill, one designer is hoping his dresses on eBay will teach him more about his clientele.
Designer Derek Lam is in the process of diversifying his brand by creating a line with a lower price point, and to get an idea what his new buyers want, he’s decided to crowdsource on eBay. In collaboration with eBay, Lam has released a preview of his new collection on eBay and shoppers can vote on their favorite looks. The five dresses that gather the most consumer votes will be available on eBay for a limited time.
This kind of “let’s hear from the people” attitude is very un-fashion industry, which is full of people who fancy themselves the types who create taste without the input from consumers. But it makes sense. What Lam has tapped into about crowdsourcing is something small businesses have been doing online for a while. Whether it’s helping pick out new flavors for gelato or asking consumers what they think of a company’s new website, the little guy has found hundreds of ways to get feedback and help from the masses. The best thing is that crowdsourcing can be conducted on our Twitter and Facebook accounts. This doesn’t mean you won’t open yourselves up to a lot of crazytown opinions that are far from helpful. On the contrary, crowdsourcing is inviting all opinions and thoughts, even the nutty ones. Sifting through these is an eye-opening experience. I recently helped launch a survey for a theater company wherein we asked the group’s Facebook friends to contribute their ideas and thoughts about programming the upcoming season. The results were fascinating and even odd at times. Overall, we learned something we already knew: People want to be heard and people like contributing to businesses and organizations that they believe in.
Crowdsourcing helps brands see what’s going on in the minds of their audiences. So, in the spirit of that, we wanna know what you think. Tell us some of your crowdsourcing thoughts, nightmares or successes in the comments section below.