How the Freelance Economy Boosts Martech Platforms

Nov 16, 2018 Susan Marshall

Collaboration, Freelance Experts, Leadership

And why businesses need a better way to manage highly skilled freelance experts

As marketing has become more technical, solutions like Salesforce, Adobe, and HubSpot have evolved from standalone tools to platforms — moving data from one tool to another to deliver personalized interactions across integrated systems.
In response, a community of freelance marketing cloud experts is growing and thriving, helping businesses unlock the value of their technology through user experience design, data management, and analytics.
Martech companies are actively encouraging this freelance community through certification programs and training. Businesses are tapping into this new workforce to add technical muscle to their marketing teams and “skill up” when they need it most. The result is a two-sided marketplace, with martech companies building supply and businesses demanding these resources.
Torchlite connects these two sides of the market, enabling freelance experts to find work, and businesses to access, engage and manage these experts in collaborative workspaces to get more done. Analysts and investors classify this type of company as a market network, combining the best of both marketplaces and networks.

Market Networks: A New Class of Unicorn Companies

According to James Currier, Managing Partner at NFX, market networks will produce a new class of unicorn companies and impact how millions of service professional work and how they earn a living. Here’s how he explains it:
Marketplaces provide transactions among multiple buyers and multiple sellers, like Poshmark, eBay, Uber, Patreon, and LendingClub.
Networks provide profiles that project a person’s identity and then lets them communicate in a 360-degree pattern with other people in the network. Think Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and LinkedIn.
What’s unique about market networks is that they:

  • Combine the main elements of both networks and marketplaces
  • Use SaaS workflow software to focus action around longer-term projects, not just a quick transaction
  • Promote the service provider as a differentiated individual, helping build long-term relationships

Market networks are also unique from a monetization standpoint. They combine the defensibility and scalability of direct networks like LinkedIn or Facebook together with the lucrative revenue models of SaaS or marketplace businesses.

How the Gig Economy is Different From Market Networks

  1. Market networks like Torchlite focus on providing more complex services, that are less transactional and provide more long-term value. The gig economy is based on commoditized, short transactions like rides, delivery, and simple tasks.
  2. Market networks focus on quality, over quantity and recognize that people matter most. Torchlite only accepts 3.77% of all applications and backs up all experts who are available and accessible in our networks.
  3. Market networks provide a way for people to collaborate around long-term marketing projects that can take months. Building intricate cross-channel communication requires teams of specialists and can take months and sometimes years. Our SaaS platform keeps everyone on track and facilitates this collaboration through workspaces.

Our mission? To facilitate long-term relationships between professional freelance experts and clients in our software, so marketers can unlock the value of their technology, get more done and compete in a digital world.

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