As we’ve seen in the past few years, user-generated content (UGC) can impact brand reputation, putting a spotlight on how crucial content moderation is for today’s companies.
Of course, businesses will want to distance themselves from content that can harm their brand’s reputation. And they won’t be able to do this without including content moderation in their digital marketing strategies. Without it, illegal and inappropriate content can easily worm their way into your brand’s online properties, as multimedia submissions on your website and blog or comments on your social media posts.
Large companies can either build a team of eagle-eyed moderators or, as in the case of discussion forums, take in volunteers. Businesses may also opt to install automated content moderation programs like anti-spam plugins and pattern-sensitive image analyzers to monitor every piece of content they receive on their channels.
So, which one works for you?
Implementation, scalability, and expenses
Building a team of content moderators will entail your regular recruitment and training process—finding qualified applicants to hire, and then training them to fulfill their responsibilities. Each employee will require computers, access to the Internet, and any relevant application they would need to view and approve or reject content.
As the business’ customer base grows, they may need to hire more moderators. And for these new employees, the company will need to provide more computers and office space, and will consume more Internet bandwidth and electricity. Operations and productivity, however, can easily be optimized once all these requirements are met. A costly investment will be needed here, considering additional salaries, benefits, incentives, and any overtime pay. This is why many companies opt to entrust their content moderation needs to a reliable outsourcing company.
By comparison, a moderation tool that’s already been set up may only require a higher subscription plan from the software developers and any necessary hardware and system upgrades. These enables the company to keep up with rapidly growing number of content submissions to moderate. This will merely require a few mouse clicks, an email confirmation or two, and an online transaction. There will, of course, be a bump in the subscription cost.
Context and personalization
Sure, you can customize automated applications based on your needs, but there are definitely limitations to what they can do. For instance, they don’t consider context. The human language is always evolving, with new words added every year.Then you’ll also have to consider deep slang references, and multicultural context.
Unfortunately, automated tools aren’t able to discern these when scanning UGC. They also won’t be able to detect comments that indirectly express customer sentiments, sarcasm, and exaggerations.
Human moderators, on the other hand, can easily assess posts and submissions for context. This is why it’s best for companies to hire moderators who come from relevant industries and are familiar with content submission platforms. The discernment of human moderators is crucial in screening content and upholding community policies when removing or keeping a post online.
Another thing that automation wouldn’t be able to add to content moderation is personalization.
However, a human moderator can provide the appropriate responses that are tailor-made for every customer. It can help humanize your brand and make you sound less robotic online when responding to messages, comments, and feedbacks.
You must understand what your brand’s needs are and what user-generated content you deal with, so you can create a better content moderation strategy for your brand. If you’re deciding between automation or human moderation, don’t ignore how both methods can work together to uphold brand’s reputation. Both means can support each other to ensure that all content submitted to a website or social media page are screened thoroughly.