Satisfaction (guaranteed)

Later today begins a new day at crowdSPRING and a new approach to our community. When we launched in May of 2008, we offered buyers a simple guarantee, and made an equally simple promise to creatives. We guaranteed “25 entries or your money back” and promised creatives that when a project reached the 25 entry threshold, someone would be paid. Buyers could be confident that they would have a choice of designs, and Creatives could be comfortable knowing that their interests were being protected.

Our guarantee was effective – we refunded a very small percentage of the projects on the site. But those refunds still represented awards that designers in our community would not receive, and the policy left a few buyers unhappy (a few who had received more than 25 entries, but could still not find “the one”).

We want every buyer to be happy with their experience on crowdSPRING and with our community. We also want our community to benefit from every project posted.

Later today, we are introducing a new guarantee: to buyers we say “you will be 100% happy with your project or your money back” and to creatives we promise that one of you will be paid for every project on the site, even if the project ends in a refund. The benefits to the community are clear: buyers will feel more comfortable posting their project (which we believe will lead to more projects on the site) and creatives will take home more cash.

Here’s how it works: when a buyer posts a project, they will still determine the amount of their awards and will  pay the crowdSPRING project fee of 15%. They will also pay a $39 “listing fee” – the listing fee will be non-refundable. These fees will fund a “kill fee” pool, for any project which ends in a refund, and we will choose one participant from the project who will receive the kill fee. The kill fee will be capped at $250 and the person who is paid the fee will retain all of the rights to their entry. There will be no wrap-up in such projects.

We are proud to continue to innovate as we refine and improve our business model. If this policy had been in place in 2009, our community would have received an additional $73,000 in project awards!

More than 54,000 designers and writers now work on crowdSPRING, and we’re excited about the opportunities ahead. We hope you’ll agree that the new guarantee benefits the entire community, and we hope you will join us in wishing everyone good luck with their projects!