User-generated content, or UGC for short, has become one of the hottest commodities in the marketing world, and it shows no signs of slowing down. For those who are unfamiliar with the term, UGC is content related to your brand that is published by a user who is not affiliated with your brand. UGC can take the form of a product review, a comment on your company’s blog, or even a hashtag. Regardless of what UGC related to your brand looks like, 55% of consumers are going to trust that content over any other marketing content released. That’s how important UGC has become. However, the benefits of UGC do not come without their own drawbacks. Not all UGC that gets published is positive for your brand, and there is content that you are not going to want to be associated with your company.
This is where Content Moderation Solutions come into play.
Content moderation solutions are sets of processes focused on scanning user-generated content to weed out prohibited and offensive content that can have a negative impact on your brand’s image or your clients and customers. Oftentimes, these posts are discovered and removed by running UGC against a set of predefined guidelines. If a post violates those guidelines it is flagged for review or taken down immediately. Utilizing a content moderation solution allows your company to take steps to protect its users and brand image from negative content.
Types of Content Moderation
There are two categories of content moderation being utilized by businesses: AI (Artificial Intelligence) Moderation and Human Moderation.
A content moderation solution utilizing AI scans for inappropriate content through a process called machine learning. Through machine learning, the AI is able to scan for words, phrases, images, and even sound bites to uncover prohibited content. If the AI is confident in its judgment that content is prohibited or harmful, it will delete the content. If the AI is unsure if a piece of content is prohibited, it will flag the content for a human to review. Depending on the solution being implemented, the AI can even put repeat offenders in a category so that content they post is moderated more frequently and with a higher level of scrutiny.
An AI’s ability to scan through large amounts of content quickly is the major advantage of AI moderation. Over 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created every day, and while it would take too long for human moderators to check so much data, AI is capable of efficiently lightening the load for them.
Even though AI is capable of doing much of the heavy lifting when it comes to content moderation, reviewing some content still requires a human touch. Rules governing communication are not always cut-and-dry. Nuance in meaning can drastically change the meaning of words and phrases, and AI is not always able to discern these nuances. This alone tells us that AI won’t be completely replacing human moderators anytime soon.
6 Reasons You Need To Invest In A Content Moderation Solution
1. Protect Your Users
By and large, the internet is safe for people to communicate with one another, learn about a robust number of topics, and interact with the brands and services they enjoy. Unfortunately, trolls still roam the internet looking to cause grief. Whether you’re moderating the comment section of your company’s blog, Instagram, youtube video, etc., keeping users safe on platforms associated with your brand is of utmost importance. The content that consumers see connected to your company will have a direct impact on how they interact with your band. If users come into contact with negative or offensive content on your platform, they will be less inclined to return in the future.
2. Better Understand Your Users
Content Moderation serves a larger purpose than simply guarding against negative content. When used correctly, AI content moderation solutions give you the opportunity to gain more insight into your audience’s opinions and behaviors. Where is your company excelling? Are there any improvements to further enhance the quality of the product? There’s no one better to learn from than the people consuming your company’s products and services. Content moderation can key you into these insights which in turn allow you to continue upgrading your business’s offerings. Implementing ideas garnered from these insights even provides you with the added bonus of telling your audience you care about what they have to say.
3. Regulate UGC Campaigns
Campaigns utilizing user-generated content can be a great source of organic marketing that allows your company to directly engage with its consumers. Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign used user-generated content masterfully by promoting consumers to upload pictures depicting a person receiving a Coke with their name on it. The campaign was a massive success and led to millions in sales, but these campaigns are not without their own unique risks. Promoting users to publish content tied to your brand can lead to inappropriate content being posted and connected to your brand. By implementing a content moderation strategy, you can ensure that content related to your brand remains appropriate and elevates your brand’s image. You can even stop inappropriate or offensive content before it ever gets published publicly.
4. Promoting Premium Content
Moderating user-generated content is more than just ensuring that the content being posted on your platforms is appropriate. You can use these same tools to prove to prospective customers and clients that your service is worth their time and money. If your company exists within the retail market, you can use content moderation to ensure that only the best product images or listings are allowed on your website. By removing lower-quality content from your audience’s view, you’re ensuring that your company is putting its best foot forward which will improve your customer conversion rate.
5. Improved Brand Visibility
As previously mentioned, user-generated content is the most useful tool for promoting your brand, and implementing a content moderation system allows you to encourage users to review your products or services and interact with your company on social media without having to worry about it negatively impacting your brand. When people have positive experiences interacting with your brand online they will be more inclined to continue interacting with your content. This tells the search engine algorithms that your content is relevant which will result in your content being shown to a wider range of people who otherwise wouldn’t see it.
6. Defend Your Brand
Internet Trolls are out there, and while it might be easy to brush them off and think that they won’t turn their ire towards you, there is always a real possibility that they can coordinate an attack on your brand’s image. A recent example involves the stock trading app Robinhood and the video game retailer Gamestop. After Robinhood stopped allowing investors to purchase shares of Gamestop those trades coordinated a review bomb campaign on Robinhood. The outraged investors published over 100,000 1-star reviews on the Google Play Store which dropped the app from a 4-star rating to a 1-star rating. The app’s Play Store rating was saved by a content moderation solution implemented by Google—who determined that the majority of the reviews were illegitimate. Had this moderation system not been in place, Robinhood’s future would have been impacted by its status as a bottom-rated app.
Content Moderation Strategies To Consider
Pre-Moderation and Post-Moderation
As their names suggest, pre-moderation and post-moderation take place at different points in the publishing process—the former occurs before a post is published whereas the latter takes place after a post has already gone live. This is where pre-moderation has an advantage over post-moderation because it eliminates prohibited content before your audience ever knows it exists. It should be noted that both forms are typically handled by human moderators, and the process takes time because moderators have to manually go through every post.
Reactive moderation is a post-moderation strategy meant to lessen the load on moderators by removing the need to look at every single post. Instead, moderators wait for users to flag a piece of content as prohibited. Moderators are alerted once a post is flagged and are subsequently given the option to remove, edit, or leave the flagged content. The most familiar example of this is on Facebook—users are given the option to flag content and then choose the category of prohibited continent it falls under. This strategy keeps the flow of content more fluent by allowing posts to go live instantly, and it takes fewer moderators than more hands-on strategies, but it can also make users more vulnerable to seeing offensive content and gives you less control over what content is published on your platform or website.
Distributed moderation is a unique strategy that leaves the task of moderation completely in the hands of your users. Users are given the option to up-vote content that they enjoy or find relevant and down-vote content that they find irrelevant or offensive. Content with a high concentration of up-votes is made more visible by the algorithm while content with lots of down-votes is made less visible. This form of moderation is highly democratic, but similarly to reactive moderation, you have less control over what content is seen. This strategy is best used in conjunction with another, more hands-on strategy.
Automated Moderation is an Ai-based strategy where content is scanned by AI for keywords, phrases, images, and even sound bites that fall into predetermined categories of prohibited content. Because of the complexity of AI and machine learning, partnering with someone who has in-depth industry knowledge is paramount to the success of your strategy. The algorithms used by AI in automated moderation strategies continue learning and creating new parameters to use when filtering for prohibited content, so you will want to ensure they are audited for accuracy. Having an AI do the heavy lifting of content moderation saves time and money, but AI isn’t perfect, and having staff knowledgeable about the industry will go a long way in ensuring this strategy is a success.
Investing In A Blended Moderation Strategy
We live in a content-driven world where hundreds of millions of people are surfing the internet—and consuming content—at any given moment. This is our shared reality, and it doesn’t look likely to change soon. Given the rate that content is being created and consumed, investing in a system to protect your brand, whether on social media or your website, is a logical move that will improve the way your audience members interact with you and each other. This is why investing in content moderation is the right step for your company.
While there are several factors to consider when choosing the content moderation solution that is right for your company—such as the level of control your company wants over the content or how many moderators you want to have on staff—the best approach is to adopt a blended solution utilizing both AI and Human moderators. Utilizing an automated moderation system in conjunction with human moderators allows your moderation team to analyze large swathes of content quickly without having to go through every byte of content uploaded. This could look like an AI moderator removing blatantly prohibited content and flagging potentially inappropriate content for a human moderator to review.
Regardless of which strategies you decide work best for your company, having both AI and human moderators gives you the efficiency of machine learning with discernment unique to humans.
Discover Our Approach
At ProximoCX, we understand that content moderation can be a large factor in the success of your company’s customer experience. We offer custom content moderation plans so your company can get the moderation help it needs. Whether you’re looking to take a hands-on approach by integrating our services into your existing teams or are looking to completely outsource your moderation, we have the technicians, technology, and expertise to deliver the highest value content moderation services available.
Contact us today to see how we can take your content moderation strategy to new heights.