We had a chat with Karl Schneider, editorial Development Director of Reed Business International, about how his publications are using UGC. He told us that User generated images are the most widely used form of UGC across his Business to Business publications.
They use UGC because RBI is comprised of niche publications. It is therefore often more beneficial to use user content as it is their users that have the most knowledge and access to niche subject matters.
He gives a great example..Farmers Weekly live-tracked the spread of crop disease with data collected and mapped by users. UGC was then effectively helping save farmers crops. By providing more accurate and speedy updates issued by farmers themselves, they were able to share and spread information much faster and more efficiently than traditional media.
Karl told us that this is why UGC is important to RBI:
- 70% of their revenue comes from online
- They aggregate user sourced information eg. tractor theft/crop disease which is very useful to their audience, and therefore brings them to the website
- They create structures so it’s easy for people to add their own information. This can help add essential information to a story that a journalist might not know
- Forums can help create content for their journalists
- They can immediately involve the audience in the journalistic process
- Their readers can let them know what information they need thus creating story ideas for their journalists
If you want to hear more you can watch the interview here:
It could therefore be said that publications can benefit hugely from their audience’s specialist knowledge.
By Kirsty Malcolm @kirstymalcolm