Since my parents' 49th wedding anniversary is today I wanted to surprise them something amazing...something fun….something that would really knock their socks off...or at least shoes.
Well, because of covid restrictions in France (uh hummm... cough) procrastination, I didn’t have very much time to put the “it” together...and mail it... and arrive, well... today. I thought about a personalized card but La Poste usually takes 10 days to arrive. I would have asked a friend to pop one in the mail from San Francisco but I felt guilty to have made no effort at all. You know, I had a vision of something really special as a personalized surprise. I envisioned some sort of nouveau telegram service and searched apps like Taskrabbit and Yelp but nothing stuck. Then I remembered that @tenhundred, this artist I follow on YouTube, provides personalized illustrations, in his style. He uses lots of vibrant colors, features couples in weird animal disguises and fantastical made-up characters from the social media world. Could I imagine my parents as weirdo cartoon characters on an e-card? Considering my parents are the ever so slightly conservative golfing buppies in their 78th and 88th year, I gave it a big “naaaaaaa I don't think so". Buuuuut it did give me inspiration to look for other unique artists on Fiverr to create a personalized message for their special day.
Looking at some of the talent on this site, makes you blow your mind! There are ultra realistic portrait artists, rapper/singer-songwriters and yes, psychic readers. Since its a general freelance site where you can contract for any service you want, there are also SEO magic makers, marketers and people who can create you an app to automatically send out birthday cards to your family so you don’t have the same uh um (cough) procrastination issue I had.
In the end, I sided in mom’s favor - singing a message with a slant to spirituality. I even dreamed of singing the ghost written song to them myself! Then I remembered I didnt inherit *any* vocal ability. I found the perfect gospel singer and I simply messaged him a few keywords and phrase: “met on a blind date”, “49th anniversary” and “opposites attract." Three days later, @talk2francis emailed beautiful lyrics and sang them in a piano gospel arrangement. If you are curious how it turned out, click here. How could I not create a cheesy slideshow to accompany the song? What a surprise it was to my parents!
Since then, I've used the site 3 more times for other gifts - all of the creators received 5 stars from me...and a tip. It's a misconception that Fiverr is simply a pay-for-service site. Think of it more as a site where you "design your own experience". If you give the creator a vision, you are the one designing the experience for your user (person receiving the gift or using the resulting product), not the one you are hiring. You turn the verb of "hiring" into "receiving". You are the one who gets the pleasure of for example, what the character would say; the feeling of receiving the pop up page; the enjoyment of singing that special song; the ad for the discount.
By designing the project, instead of listing "to dos", you enter the first step of envisioning the result as a user/receiver. You give them pieces of inspiration, emotional keywords, film, audio, anything to help convey what you want, the user/receiver, to experience...and you in turn, to experience as the designer. You potentially receive something such more than what you are actually contracting for - an experience. If you tried a google search or even looked for facebook friend recommendations, you would contract a service. Though it’s not a replacement for the “who do you know that does...” contacts of your networking groups, you experience creativity in a totally different way. You are the one involved in the designing of your idea and you decide to experience the process of its creation. So go ahead and be creative! Be ridiculously creative.
Here's an idea: reach in your dream bag and pull out two random ideas to see how your Fiverr creator will take on the creative challenge. Let's say your project is to create a tech pack for a factory or potential partner. Sure you need the basics like jean measurements, kind of stitching, etc but give the creator room to create and give them a vision so they don't only complete a typical online template. Automation? 3-D rotation? Then choose your creator accordingly. Maybe you find yourself hiring an engineer instead of a fashionista or a photoshop expert. If you think your project is not a creative one, think about it again.
In another life I would definitely have tried being an ice skater like @jeremicesk8er. At this point in my life however, I don’t wanna spend $50k in schooling and 10K hours of practice to try and ice dance to a song advertising my services. Why not create something unique and fresh like that for an Instagram post. Maybe a quote or a discussion question could work to engage people and who knows? You might go viral. Let sites like Fiverr be your excuse to “go there”.
Here are some usage tips for you:
What do you have on your to-do list? Design a 3-D image, a croque for a collection or a logo? Create a gift for a friend? Perhaps invent a project that would not only help you get work done faster, more engagement on social media but also give you an unusual experience.
I don’t know about you, but I have a lot more imagining to do!
PS Fiverr did not sponsor this post.