It’s no surprise that Todd and Lauren Sullivan wanted to tap into some design that was ‘off the beaten path’ when they founded Globetrooper.com – a site that helps adventurous travelers create trips and invite people from all over the world to join them.
The team has run three design projects at 99designs.com so far and is always getting fantastic compliments on the results:
“We have been told by people that our site is the best looking site they’ve seen. Of course that’s subjective, but the fact it’s been said says something important about 99designs.”
Logo Design by Overprint
Business card Design by Reklawdesign
Web Design by Pixelized
February 27, 2010
Getting custom marketing collateral designed fast can be a challenge particularly for small businesses and startups.
Business Card Design by niichan
What brought you to 99designs.com?
Dyyno is a new online video sharing platform that distributes HD video to an unlimited number of viewers for free. It’s a really cool technology and now that we are pushing it out to the public – we needed the marketing material to back it up.
We had been working with some local designers, but they were really expensive, they did not always do what we wanted them to do, we did not have very many designs to choose from, and ultimately their style is pretty much the same every time. While its nice to have one designer create a consistent look across all the collateral it’s also really good to have multiple options.
Datasheet Design by Arteche Gaston
What marketing collateral have you had designed at 99designs?
The first design project we ran was for a datasheet – we had over 90 submissions and we were really excited. I worked closely with five designers who were great about making changes while we were zeroing in on the final design. The designer that we ended up choosing has been awesome – even now he makes little tweaks to the design as need be.
We also have run projects to design a brochure, a flyer, a second datasheet, a quick start guide and our business cards – The experience that has just been tremendous. I’m not sure if 99designs has a screening process for the designers but if you do – it’s a good one. Every designer that we picked has been excellent with a great work ethic – they are just really, really helpful.
Because of 99designs we now have 6 great pieces of marketing collateral where before we had 3 terrible pieces. We have been to 5 conferences since I joined Dyyno, and I now feel more confident being next to companies that are much more established than us with quality of the marketing collateral we have gotten through 99designs.
Flyer Design by Arteche Gaston
Do you have any tips for running successful design projects?
The most important thing is to stay active and give the designers feedback. The first project that I did – I had no idea what I was doing. I wasn’t giving nearly enough feedback. Now, I try to engage in the project in such a way that respects both my time and the time the designers put into it. For example, I eliminate the designs that are way off base right away. It may sound harsh, but it lets the designers know that they don’t need to waste any more time on it. The more respect you show the designers – the more likely they will be to help you and participate.
Brochure Design by phoebetsui
February 18, 2010
One of the biggest benefits of using 99designs.com for both clients and designers is that it creates a tremendous opportunity to BUILD RELATIONSHIPS for future work.
We recently received the following email from one of the designers in the community, pb_design, who wanted to tell us about just one such relationship.
Hope you’re all well.
Just want to share a story with you and it’s some positive feedback.
About a year ago I won a design contest on 99designs for a logo and iphone
Since then I’ve continued working with the client, Ambient Industries, as
their graphic designer, designing the look of the whole application and the
website. During the evolution of the application it has changed name and
brand, from ‘Groove’ to ‘Flook’:
Flook is a location browser, it’s free to download and is currently a
staff pick on the Apple store US. Try it out and let us know what you
I believe this is one of the true benefits of using 99designs. It enables
clients and designers to meet, who otherwise wouldn’t know of each other.
In a number of projects I, and other designers in the community have gone
on to do further work with the clients after the initial contest is
complete. Your site supports this, right across the world, which is
So, here’s a big thank you from me and Ambient Industries! If you hadn’t
hosted the contest, then the partnership in creating the app could never
Pete Borlace (pb_design)
Oh and if you have an iphone – check out Flook… it’s pretty cool!
January 26, 2010
Logo Design by ndo
“Nothing to ask. Just a few quick words.
I just started my first own company after spending many years working for bigger corporations. One of my former employers brought me in contact with 99designs when we crowdsourced some design work. Back then I was happy with the value we got out of it.
Now I have my own startup and am amazed.
With a very limited budget I couldn’t spend much but wanted to get a good logo done never the less. A symbolic act if you will. Good design keeps you going on the long nights when you build a company.
I created a contest with $150 in prize money and told the designers straight up what this was all about. That they were designing for a small startup and that I wished I could offer them more money. Instead I offered
them 100% verbal feedback as quickly as I could possibly give it.
To my delight, the community of 99designs designers jumped on the offer. 3.5 days into the contest we are approaching 120 submissions. 3 of them beat my expectations by a wide margin. I would consider them designs worthy to stand for multi-billion dollar corporations and marketing campaigns.
It is very rare that startups get to play in the same league as the big guys.
Thanks to your site, startups like mine get professional and amazing design work done at a rate we can afford.
Thank you. That’s really all I wanted to say.”
January 5, 2010
Branding a Startup with 99designs.com
What brought you to 99designs.com
What brought me to 99designs is that I was pissed off at Logoworks. This is my 3rd startup and I am an investor in 9 other startups – and the early branding of a startup is always a problem. I used to go to Logoworks because it had a fixed price and I liked the workflow, but the last 4 projects I had run – the creativity involved in the early mockups was just not there. I just didn’t like the stuff that came out of the process.
I was like – well this kinda sucks… I want more creative input into this thing – so that’s what I was trying to do. I just want more creative ideas – so I found 99designs.
How has your experience been with 99designs?
It went really well. What’s interesting is that there’s good news and bad news. I had lot’s of submissions – almost too many submissions. But the great news is that you filter through those and there was stuff that I could play off of.
It was like…well that’s creative, that’s something I could not have pulled off on my own… and that’s something that a single individual even if I hired them at 20x the price I would have no guarantee that the actual outcome would have been anywhere near the same.
That’s the power of crowdsourcing – it works for that kind of a problem.
December 12, 2009
Tyson Quick, COO of Mesiab Labs, the software and web application company responsible for retweet.com among other things, is an experienced project holder at 99designs.com. He has used 99designs to source custom graphic design work on everything from logos to landing pages. I recently got a chance to catch up with Tyson and he shared a bit of his experiences including some tips on how he gets great results each and every time.
We first found it through a friend of mine. He was launching a software application company and had used 99designs several times – so I checked it it out and was immediately impressed. We had a designer in-house that we were paying about $4,000 a month and we got 10x the results for a fraction of the cost. That was a clear indicator that this is a great way to get design work done.
What design projects have you run at 99designs.com?
All kinds – We have run logo design projects for retweet, and for a new company we are launching in 2010 – affiliate alliance. We have also run projects for banner ad design and landing page design. The landing page projects have been great because we actually awarded multiple winners so we could do split testing.
Landing Page Design
Prior to 99designs you had all your design work done in-house?
Yup we have an in-house designer, but we have so many projects he couldn’t do them all himself. It’s just so hard to find a designer and even when you do – you might get a design you like or there might be something that’s just not quite right.
99designs makes this much easier – you have multiple options that you develop with the designers over the course of a week. When you start you may not know exactly what you are looking for, but by the end of the week – you’ve got something you are pretty confident in. I don’t know of any other place where you can get that kind of results.
We have built contacts with multiple designers that we have gone back to outside of 99designs for work on smaller projects- like tweaking an existing landing page and things like that. I think that’s what makes the service so attractive to designers. They are going to have build a portfolio anyway – why not do it on 99designs and whether you win or not you have pieces to add to your portfolio.
Banner Ad Design
Do you have any tips on how you get such great results?
Definitely – getting a landing page built is more complex than running a project for a logo. One thing that I have noticed about the process for doing a lander is that its extremely helpful to provide the designers existing resources to work off of – like a basic wireframe or something – rather than just throwing the project out there.
Also, feedback is so important. We have noticed huge difference in the outcome when we give detailed feedback to the designers. And because of that, we now have a good reputation on the site so every project we post generates a lot of interest from the design community – so we tend to get twice as many submissions as similar projects at the same price point.
December 3, 2009
“@Robelen try 99designs.com – fellow tweeps put me onto it, fabulous approach to commissioning design work. I got a top outcome, low price.” – via @darrenwhitelaw
“@digijoe we’ve had great results using 99designs.” – via @DEvansMatthews
“@delic8genius not bad but have you considered 99designs.com for your logo design? Very awesome!” – via @scottglew
“99designs is very cheap compared to a design firm. I had a firm point me there because of a tight budget, awesome result” – via @WesBrownSQL
“Must say – I ended up very happy with @99designs – once again.” – via @snickn
“@99designs – Love the site, keep up the good work.” – via @That1design