We paid a contractor to design a new logo. As I recall the suggested logos submitted were universally criticized on A/P in some very long threads.
So a contest was suggested, and of the DOZENS of free logos submitted by A/Pers, most of them were BETTER than the professional products!
I don't like design contests. The problem with the O-USA logo wasn't that they hired a contractor, it's that they hired a contractor who had no idea about orienteering and the communication between the client and designer wasn't very good. If the client doesn't know what it wants, and the designer doesn't understand the project that well (or isn't a very good designer to begin with), there are going to be problems.
The ideal process is to hire a designer with a competent portfolio, give them a good design brief, and then go through several iterations of the design process until everyone is happy.
Yes, design contests can generate buzz and democratize the process, but it oftentimes devalues graphic design because designers are willing go give away stuff for free. And it's not always a pleasant result. The city of Everett, WA held a design contest in 2014 for a new city logo. They offered $5000 to the winning design, so it got a 849 submissions (mostly bad
), and at the end of the day, they paid the designer $5000 and then they never used it
because it turned out to look too much like an existing logo.
As orienteers, we don't have design contests for course design. When we want a new map, we don't have a mapping contest for that, either.
For the social media gig, if you really want to be effective, it's more than just sharing random links and posting photos. Again, the ideal process is to hire someone with competent experience (What other brands have they worked with? How much did they improve page views, clicks, engagement, and other measurable metrics? What's the ideal budget for the stated goals?).
And again, the communication between the client and the social media expert needs to be good. If the client doesn't know what it wants, and the contractor doesn't understand the project that well (or isn't very competent to begin with), there are going to be problems.
Sure, we can probably hire (for free or for cheap) a young orienteer with Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, but I think the goals of this project are a lot bigger.