(Video via Fiverr on YouTube)
Israeli marketplace for professional services Fiverr is coming to Philly next week for a stop on its “Doers across America” tour, a series of networking events happening in the Northeast and Midwest.
The company is linking up with Startup Grind and WeWork — the latter of which will play host at its Walnut Street location — for a night of trading business cards, nabbing swag and hearing from Philly-based users of the platform.
“We’re taking what we do from a digital perspective and sharing it with the community in a physical way,” Fiverr PR manager Abby Forman told Technical.ly. “Doers across America is an effort to gather our community members, from sellers to buyers, to build relationships with people from the community.”
The rep said Fiverr, which was born as a marketplace for $5 tasks like simple logo designs or short pieces of content, has around 30,000 users in the Philly area. The tour will see Fiverr also splash down in cities like Pittsburgh, Detroit, Chicago and D.C. throughout the summer.
“We’re hoping to inform people who don’t know about us, but also we’re hoping to gather feedback from the community,” Forman said.
Fiverr faced some backlash earlier this year thanks to a campaign titled “In doers we trust.” In one ad, the company described doers as those who skipped meals and whose “drug of choice” was sleep deprivation.
In response, the company put out a statement saying the campaign targeted people who recognize “the kind of work ethic that it takes to bring an idea to life.”
Though Forman said she couldn’t speak much further on the ad issue, she said the company does its best to help users control the amount of work they take on through a series of settings. “We value work-life balance,” Forman said.
So how do Philly doers feel about the marketplace? Judging from the three we checked in with, it’s a mixed bag.
For freelance writer Danielle Corcione (who, full disclosure, has contributed to Technical.ly) it was a gateway to a specific aspect of her freelance work. “It helped me see what services were in demand from writers,” Corcione said. “I did things like resumes and greeting cards through there. It’s a platform for someone who’s starting out.”
(The writer shared more deets in this Medium post.)
On the PHL Design Slack though, designer Mike Meulstee — aka ArtisticDork railed against Fiverr.
“It absolutely is exploitation of the design world as well as uninformed small business owners,” Meulstee said. “It sets an unrealistic expectation of what a legit designer will charge.”
On the flip side of things as a buyer, Digitability’s head of marketing David Cohen sees the platform’s value to quickly try out concepts on a budget.
“I’ve also used it to get inexpensive content made to test marketing messages/ideas/content on social channels before spending a lot of internal time and resources,” Cohen said.-30-
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