Crowdsourcing to Create and Promote: Why the Vaccines Get it Right!

Like the idea of interacting with supporters via social media? Like to hear about crowdsourcing done right? So does the English indie rock group the Vaccines. In fact, they like it so much that they’ve let their biggest supporters – the fans – contribute to their latest music video.

The Vaccines with Crowd

It's nice to have a "crowd" worth "sourcing"!

Knowing that promoting themselves more memorably would mean getting their fans directly involved in their next endeavor, the Vaccines deciding to leverage the untapped potential of their social media following. The band asked fans to submit photos of festival and concert experiences so that they could use the images in the video for their upcoming single, “Wetsuit.” They requested that the photos be taken using Instagram (the photo-sharing app for iPhone) and tagged using #VACCINESVIDEO.

As the group put it, they needed images of “bands, tents, fields, mud, thrills, spills, the lot!” And, well, that’s exactly what the fans delivered!

The video – a nostalgic, sentimental tribute to the communal experience of music – benefits greatly from the images submitted:


As a creative endeavor, crowdsourcing can be a great way to gather huge amounts of artistic input for the sake of the end product. With that said, it looks like the “Wetsuit” video can be considered one of the better examples of the practice.

The Vaccines on a Magazine Cover

All about the fans!

Says the band about connecting with fans:

“We like sharing music with them, meeting them, interacting with them, as most bands do. So this felt like the ultimate interaction.”

Considering that they’ve been so outspoken about their love for the fans, their approach for the video seems fitting. The Vaccines have obviously done well to use crowdsourcing as both a means of creative expression and creative outreach. They fashioned a unique video and were able to collaborate with their fans in the process. Talk about a win-win!

Is the Vaccines’ latest video an example of crowdsourcing done right? Should more bands opt to network with their fans in a creative manner? If so, how so?

Image credit to The Vaccines Official Facebook Page

Joseph Giorgi

Joseph is the head of the Media Team at Quality Logo Products. He's a video specialist, blogger, perfectionist, and all-around likeable guy. When he's not busy focusing on the nitty-gritty details of his written and visual work, he's normally listening to bad 80s music and scouring the internet for useless information on useless subjects. You can also connect with Joe on Google+.


  1. Mandy Kilinskis

    I love it! The Vaccines did a fantastic job of crowdsourcing. On one hand, I would love to see more bands do this, but on the other hand, if EVERY band started doing it, crowdsourcing would get very old very fast. But used in moderation? I’d love it.

    Crowdsourcing is such a great way to inspire both old and new brand advocates. I think for those bands that may not have as big of a following, they could try holding contests where their fans act out their favorite lyric and take a picture or at one of their shows…or something. There’s a reason that I just stick to seeing shows.

    Unrelated, I’m mostly impressed that the Vaccines were able to take the square Instagram pictures and crop them down to widescreen shots and still maintain the feel of the picture.

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Instagram pics can only be uploaded in a square format? That seems kind of restrictive — and lame.

      Anyway, yeah, you’re right about how crowdsourcing could be an easy to overdo. Fortunately (or unfortunately, I suppose), there really aren’t that many bands taking advantage of it yet. So, anytime I come across I band that does, I get kind of excited. It’s definitely one of the better ways for bands to promote their music and build a following, provided that they have the resources and can afford to try it.

      I still sort of prefer the interactive approach to music videos than the crowdsourcing approach, but at the end of the day, it’s nice to see such interesting and creative methods at work. It’s just cool that building more direct relationships and interacting with fans is becoming the norm for modern musicians.

      • Mandy Kilinskis

        Instagram and Hipstamatic (another popular iOS camera app) only allow users to shoot pictures in square format. I like both of the apps, and I imagine that the square shape (a nod to Polaroids and other film/cameras of old) feeds into the nostalgia craze. it must be working for them. Over 10 million people use Instagram — including a lot of bands. 🙂

        But, yes, it is cool that bands are taking a more personal approach. I know that I have a much fiercer loyalty to the bands that interact with fans compared to the ones that just create music and continue on with their lives.

  2. Jenna Markowski

    I LOVE this video! Not only was crowdsourcing a great way for the Vaccines to get their name out there, but it also got some good publicity for Instagram considering all of the photos had to be submitted through that service. The Instagram effects help this video achieve the warm, nostalgic feeling it was going for. PLUS, I know if I was a fan and I got to see my photos in my favorite band’s music video I would be promoting that band to everyone I knew!

    Excellent post, Joe! 🙂

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Thanks, Jenna!

      Yeah, crowdsourcing works here both as a creative tactic and as a marketing strategy. I’m sure that the fans lucky enough to have their pics featured in the video immediately went and promoted the heck out of it.

  3. amy

    Along with Mandy and Jenna, I love this idea of crowdsourcing. Your Blink182 post was another great example of it. Like Mandy said, I like it but I could see how it could start to wear pretty thin. Only so many times you can see amateur video complied into a music video. Since it’s currently new and fresh I like the idea 🙂 Another great post, Joe!

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Thanks! Yeah, it could definitely start to get old fast if the technique gets overused. Interestingly, there aren’t too many examples out there just yet. I’m sure there’ll be more soon though.

  4. Cybernetic SAM

    Wow that was really neat! They get my vote for “awesome”! If there is one thing I deeply judge bands on it is their relationship with their fans. Without fans, bands would not be where they are. So with that being said, there is something so endearing when bands interact and involve the people who made them big. Not to mention that is pretty clever marketing. After all I am a music nazi and they caught my attention! Great post! 🙂

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Very true. Without the support of a loyal fan base, a band won’t amount to much of anything. The Vaccines have done an awesome job of reaching out to their fans here, and I’m sure that the fans will return the favor with their continued loyalty.

  5. JPorretto

    I would do something like this with my band, unfortunately I think a video with a crowd of 4-12 people would not be terribly beneficial to our band.

    Ssshhh…. we actually took video of another band’s crowd and dubbed our sound over it for a promotional vid… HEE HEE HEE… (Dr. Evil pinky gesture)

    • Joseph Giorgi

      Using another band’s crowd for your video? That’s pretty sneaky — but also pretty clever. Nicely done! 😉

  6. KaRi from TPSradio

    Just learned of this band through an article I came across on project fundraising. (Eventually all good articles come from Mashable, LOL). Joseph Giorgi, I’d love to crowdsource with Quality Logo Products dot com !

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