For anyone looking to start a business, plant a church, overhaul your website, re-brand your company, or get help with just about any creative print or corporate identity endeavor, I want to share a great and cost effective resource I recently came across.
In exploring various designers and design firms to create our logo for us, I became less and less excited about the idea of hiring a single designer or firm to do it. I just didn't like our odds of getting something we'd be really happy with, at least not on our budget. Then I came across a great solution: crowdsourcing.
Crowdsourcing is essentially taking a job you'd normally hire out to a single individual or company, like getting your logo designed, and opening it up to an entire creative community. As the contest host, you write a creative brief about who you are, what you're looking for, decide how much the winner will be paid out and launch the contest. Then as designs begin to come in, you rate them 1 to 5, give feedback and ask the designers to change or tweak their work.
Although I am sure there are more, I came across two online creative communities like this. The first is ZenLayout. ZenLayout draws a lot of designers from Europe. I found their logo designs to be pretty quality but a bit more traditional. The second (and the one we went with) is Guerra Creativa. Based out of Argentina, Guerra Creativa draws a lot of designers from South America. Many of the designers speak English, and thanks to Google Translate being incorporated into the site, you can easily communicate with those who don't with the push of a button. The quality of designs from GC are excellent and less traditional.
In our 3 week long contest, we had roughly 70 designers submit over 200 designs, a number of which I would have been delighted to have as our logo. We were also able to get our print design thrown in for free by the winning designer. And the total cost (just about $300) was far less than what it'd cost to hire a large firm or professional designer for.