Google is now sourcing the crowd to help market its products. Google’s new Demo Slam taps the free creative resources of the crowd, pitting user submitted videos against each other. Demo Slam visitors vote on which video of a random pair showcases Google products in the most creative and entertaining way.
Though the Slam was originally conceived in a video battle between Google vice president of engineering Udi Manber and CFO Patrick Pichette, the company quickly saw the potential in turning this into a user-driven contest. It looks like most of the videos posted early on are Google-produced, considering the production values. So it’ll be interesting to see some authentic user submissions.
If it succeeds, the benefits of this campaign will go far beyond scoring a few creative demos. To start, fans are a company’s best salespeople and the excitement for Google products in these videos is contagious. Easy for viewers to relate because they’re watching their peers enjoy the products in very imaginative ways.
Undoubtedly, Google is designing the campaign to build traffic. Not only do users have to submit their videos through YouTube (a Google service), but their friends and followers are directed to the Demo Slam site to vote. Judging by the considerable view counts on some of the posted videos, visitors who stop by the site to vote end up browsing other Slam videos.
If this catches on, not only will Google save on the cost of putting the Google staff to the task, but the content is free. Some would say you get what you pay for. But that’s the larger debate as to the value of crowd-sourcing in general.