Before I can even begin to discuss user or employee-generated content (UGC or EGC), I have to stop and define the category in my own terms. Everyone has their own definition for UGC/EGC; in my view, a UGC or EGC content campaign is simply a tool that both brand and media publishers can take advantage of to aggregate content from a large group of individuals that serves a purpose for--and meets the needs of--that same large group. And, although I might be biased, video should be central to UGC content efforts. The one thing that everyone can agree on: UGC is one of the absolute best ways to generate content. Ultimately, UGC is a very low-cost way to aggregate content, share knowledge and generate traffic.
There are many reasons why publishers might want to run a UGC campaign. For instance: companies can tap their customers to provide consumer reviews, analysis or even testimonials for products or services. Conversely, companies may want to facilitate an EGC content campaign to capture unique knowledge, foster collaboration or encourage skill sharing within their organization. Regardless of the reason you may want to create a UGC or EGC campaign, you'll need the right tools for the job. Enter Brightcove.
Tech partners and APIs
At Brightcove, we offer you two ways to accomplish your UGC/EGC goals. First, we've partnered with a fantastic company that specializes in UGC campaigns: Filemobile. Alternatively, you can quickly and easily build your own UGC/EGC video widget based on our APIs. We've provided some source code to help you get started here. With this support document, you'll be able to complete the coding in no time! But beyond the code, we can help you plan your UGC campaign with an emphasis on moderation.
Tagging and smart playlists
One of the best things that you can do is to properly moderate your campaign. By doing so, you'll retain control of the quality of the material you filter to your viewers. From a technical perspective, you can moderate by using specific tags in your campaign. After you have dutifully promoted your UGC initiatives and the content begins to roll in, then the fun begins. When a user first uploads a video, you can add a tag, for example, "ugc_unapproved." Then, you can create a smart playlist in Brightcove Video Cloud that listens for this tag. This will allow you to review all of your videos in one place and to approve or deny them, based on content, quality or any other designated parameter. By adding custom metadata fields to your videos, you can keep track of approver, reason for denial and other information that might be helpful to review in the future.
Once initial tagging is complete, you'll want to create a smart playlist for all of the approved content; create several if your content can be broken down by categories, departments or other classifications. The next step is to assign someone or a group of people to moderate and manage the content you receive. This can be done right within the Brightcove Video Cloud Studio by simply changing the tag that you have assigned to the video. Alternatively, you can build a custom application that you can secure for access only by your administrators. This app is really simple to build since you can rely on the API call to retrieve the video ID and play it for the moderator. Next to it, incorporate a button for "approve" and "deny." The button can use the same APIs to update the tag used for "ugc_approved" or others. It can also populate the custom fields, such as "approver" and "reason." Once a change has been made, Video Cloud will automatically move the video to the appropriate playlist. If you have the approved playlist displayed in a player or on a page, the videos will automatically appear. Awesome!
Once you have great, user-generated video content available for your viewers to consume, don't forget to run ads on the players if monetizing content is a priority. If the content is educational or designed for knowledge-sharing, consider adding tags that would enable some of our tech partner plug-ins to automatically create closed captions or transcripts for this content, amongst other functionality. Captioning and transcripts are specifically important as they can improve search functionality and have the potential to enhance SEO efforts.
As you work through your ideas and concepts for user-generated content, contact your friendly Brightcove sales engineer. We're always more than happy to consult with you and to assist with your development and acquisition of new video content.