Video Feature: Henry Timms on Boaty McBoatface & Crowdsourcing

What brands can learn from the failure of Boaty McBoatface | Henry Timms

In my research into methods of crowdsourcing, successful crowdsourcing, and how to build crowdsourcing campaigns I came across a video from Henry Timms. This video discussed what others can learn from the British Natural Environment Research Council’s failed crowdsourcing campaign to name their new arctic explorer vessel in 2016.  The first point Henry brought up was strategy. When considering crowdsourcing it should be determined if it is actually needed! This seems like a logical first step, but I can see how you could get caught up over the idea of attempting to engage your audience. Henry’s next point is that successful crowdsourcing requires legitimacy with the crowd. If you have no previous connection with your audience, or you have “burnt bridges” so to speak it might not be the best idea. The third point, is control. He stressed the point that you must be willing to give up control over the topic you are crowdsourcing. He stressed the importance of honoring the product/idea the crowdsourcing brought about. The final point Henry bring up was commitment. This was my favorite as it stressed that this can’t be a one-off event. That engaging with your audience must be something that is built over time. I felt like this really linked back to the areas of control and legitimacy; if you have built a rapport with your audience you are legitimate in their eyes, and you would be more likely to give up control for crowdsourcing campaigns.

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