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Crowdsourced design platform DesignCrowd launched localized services in India, Singapore, and the Philippines on Wednesday.
“Asia is already the fastest growing geography in our network and we've achieved this largely through word of mouth,” chief operating officer Chris McNamara told Crowdsourcing.org. “Our main reasons for launching in Singapore, India and the Philippines are twofold – to bring the benefits of design crowdsourcing to small and medium sized businesses in these markets; and to expand our base of designers in the region. There are hundreds of thousands of creatives working in these countries – our aim is to help showcase their talent to the world.”
The move comes several months after DesignCrowd's expansion into Canada.
The Australia-based company has 90,000 global designers, but has made it a point to offer more localized services. The three new sites – designcrowd.co.in, designcrowd.com.ph, and designcrowd.com.sg – join the company’s existing U.S., U.K., New Zealand, Canada, and Australia branches.
“We believe that it's important to tailor the marketplace to cater for [countries’] differences – that's why we localize our pricing, have local customer support and shape the content of the website to suit local preferences,” McNamara explained.
While the company has experience in expanding into new regions, McNamara does see several potential challenges in reaching new designers and customers in the region. He specifically mentioned “building awareness of how crowdfunding works” and “making sure [the company] can provide exception service to local clients and designers as they begin using the marketplace.”
To overcome the first hurdle, McNamara says the company has made it easy to submit designs and post requests, which will encourage experimentation. To mitigate the second challenge, the company has set up support services in local languages operating around the clock – “so if you’re working then so are we.”
McNamara predicts rapid growth for the crowdsourcing design industry. To keep up with the pace, the company implemented participation payments, which encourage submissions, and will launch new features that will make it easier for repeat customers to tap into its network on a recurring basis. DesignCrowd also recently rolled out BrandCrowd, a marketplace which lets designers sell their favorite unused templates.
On top of that, the COO says DesignCrowd is looking at new regions to expand into. While the company is next focused on beefing up its operations in the U.S., McNamara said the team is also looking at opportunities to “grow organically… or expand rapidly through acquisition” in South America, Europe, and other parts of Asia.
“Over the next 12-18 months,” he said, “you can expect to see us in more countries around the world.”