Gold Rush


Crowdsourcing parking data via social media marketing — a city-wide competitive event from concept to execution.

Spot Parking is a startup out of Sydney, Australia with a unique approach to urban parking.

With a database of every parking space in a city, drivers could pay for parking with their cell phones, city officials could digitally regulate permit zones, and driverless cars could one day find their own empty spaces.

The problem: this data doesn't exist.

Previously, Spot had been hiring college students to capture the photo and geo-location of every single parking sign in the city over the course of several weeks. With success in Sydney and Melbourne, Spot wanted to expand to the United States and asked me to manage a team of 3 in Colorado.

I proposed Gold Rush, a single-day competitive event in which 5 - 15 teams-of-two race around the city and compete to capture parking signs for cash prizes. Contestants earn a base pay of $20-25/hr with additional bonus payouts for speed and accuracy.

Applicants are sourced with finely-targeted social media marketing, then directed to complete a digital training process which includes a short practice collection in their own neighborhood.

Gold Rush was designed to be lightweight, scalable, and replicable in any city regardless of size - it can be managed by a team of just two or three. Because of it's crowdsourced nature and automated training process, it can even be deployed remotely or in several cities at once.

We ran the pilot Gold Rush in Boulder, then quickly proved its scalability in Denver. After some review and revision—including building a collector training dashboard and management database—we were successful in remotely directing two more Gold Rush events in Hollywood, CA and Melbourne, Australia.

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