3 Reasons Big Brands Crowdsource Video
Marketers must remain "always on" to reach the right customers through the noise of today's fragmented media landscape. As a result, many brands are not only launching digital initiatives, but also are turning to innovative online approaches to get more mileage out of their traditionally-produced ad campaigns.
Many of these practices rely on mobilizing online consumer relationships to extend the reach of the brand message or deepen the impact of the company's offer. One such practice is creative crowdsourcing, an approach that aims to rally a brand's community of fans to generate content.
As a quick refresher, crowdsourcing, is the act of assigning specialized tasks to a distributed or targeted group of people in the form of an "open call." Today, many industries are crowdsourcing to enhance products or accelerate project outcomes. Nowhere is this practice being leveraged in more imaginative ways than in advertising and marketing. Among the types of content being crowdsourced, video, with its ability to establish a more personal connection between businesses and consumers, continues to be cited as the most effective
Crowdsourced video offers today's marketers a number of benefits, including:
Advocacy – Crowdsourced video can function as a sounding board for your brand's most ardent advocates. A campaign that encourages customers to submit videos about how they use a product or why they can't live without can channel the creative interpretations of those who are most passionate and most familiar with your brand into marketing content that can help your campaign resonate with your target audience. The resulting content can be a powerful testimony to the value that your brand delivers, which can help build trust among other customers and help convert prospects into customers.
Engagement – The catalog of video content generated through crowdsourcing also presents a host of consumer engagement opportunities for marketers. The collection of campaign-themed videos can be framed, reformatted, and repurposed into contact that marketers can use across a range of consumer touchpoints and platforms, devices, and media. Video can be a great way to trigger conversations by asking customers to rate, comment on, and share their favorite videos through social channels. The feedback and insights offered can shed light on the brand's creative positioning and unearth insights for future promotions.
Awareness – The process of crowdsourcing video is an event unto itself. It provides a forum to creatively collaborate on brand messaging with the company's most important stakeholders: highly engaged and valuable customers. And it unites those customers based on the specific time, place, and theme of the campaign. Furthermore, a crowdsourcing campaign invites constituents to effectively own a piece of the brand's message. This generates branded content produced "by the people, for the people" and creates a level of authenticity that is the perfect complement to the traditional agency workflow. Generally, we find that a large portion of crowdsourced video produces personable, shareable content, which is capable of driving significant online word of mouth.
Buick and Siemens provide two great examples of how top big brands have used crowdsourced video to enhance their marketing communications.
Buick: To kick off its March Madness promotions, Buick produced a series of films spotlighting former student athletes doing good works, called the Human Highlight Reel. To complement these professionally-produced pieces, Buick teamed up with the NCAA to create a microsite and invite people to submit their own video stories describing how NCAA athletes are impacting local communities across the country. Through this effort, Buick collected a wealth of powerful stories of community leadership featuring former student athletes from nearly every sport sanctioned by the NCAA. These stories continue to reinforce Buick's commitment to recognizing the positive impact of student athlete leaders year-round during various college sporting seasons.
Siemens: Early last year Siemens launched its new storytelling format for corporate communications with world-renown documentary filmmakers and journalists. Seeking to "join-cast" the next phase of this digital magazine, Siemens invited filmmakers and concerned citizens from around the world to submit short films about how technological innovation can improve urban life and create a better world. The Changing Your City for the Better campaign generated 118 mini-documentary videos from 26 counties and six continents that discussed topics like urban infrastructure and energy supply innovations. The winning video went on to be nominated for a TED "Ads Worth Spreading" award. In addition, some of the videos continue to be featured on Siemens' website.
Crowdsourced video can be a powerful complement to traditional advertising campaigns, offering today's marketers a unique combination of content, engagement, and awareness. Video generated via the groundswell of advocates is a unique way of establishing and deepening consumer relationships.
This article was originally featured on 1to1Media - read the entire article here.
(*"Camera operator..." CC Image courtesy of jsawkins on Flickr)