Off-Shore, Round 2
While in Madrid a friend introduced me to a website called freelancer.com. It allows you to put out a job request, a contest, and then people compete for the job by submitting designs. What I had witnessed with my friend were hundreds of variations of logos, all for a prize of something like $200. The designs were clever and well thought out. So we decided to put the job request out on freelancer.com.
Perhaps with small incremental tasks the site can be effective, but what we were looking for was an entire web design. Also, upon listing the contest, I couldn’t understand why all the artists had demanded the contest be “closed”, meaning their work wouldn’t be seen by the other artists. It became clear towards the end, as the submissions were either amateurish or blatantly plagiarized. Before the submission deadline had expired it was clear we wouldn’t find what we needed.
So we regrouped, bit the bullet, and decided to drastically increase (by about 10x) the amount of capital we were budgeting for design. Andreas knew a professional team in Münster, Germany that he had worked with numerous times when he was a consultant in California. They had built sites for Microsoft, Toshiba, and several other large multinationals. I was going to be in Germany, so we set up a time to meet with them. It was also at this time that Charlie, our lead developer, came up with the most obvious and important idea of the whole process. Instead of giving designers websites that we liked as examples, why not try and find the designers behind those specific websites? We all separated and came back together several days later with our favorite website designs