Is the future of advertising user generated content?

“I believe that the world’s advertising creative can be generated by the consumers its designed to engage,” says Jules Lund, founder of influencer marketing platform, Tribe.

Lund suggests its time that all brands embraced user-generated content to create bespoke ads that will resonate with their customers. Arguing that most brands are turning to social media and non-traditional forms of media to speak with consumers, Lund suggets the days of traditional campaigns are long gone.

“Distribution of ads is no longer the problem, creating them is. Brands used to get away with a TVC and a print campaign and now they need something every couple of weeks for digital advertising.”

Lund suggests given the 100s of content pieces that a brand now needs to deliver, doesn’t it make sense to give some of that heavy lifting to the consumers who are actually engaged with the product?

The former TV presenter and radio host turned marketing guru has put his money where his mouth is. Three years ago, Lund launched Tribe. An influencer marketing platform with a unique premise. Businesses would send a brief to the platform and Tribe’s team of mictoinfluencers would respond with their creative ideas for the brief. The platform immediately took off as a viable alternative to traditional creative agencies who are usually out of the price range of an SME’s budget.

Today Tribe has facilitated close to 7000 marketing briefs with its team of influencers and helped 100s of SMBs create campaigns that resonate with their customers.

Lund describes the platform as a stock image library with a difference.

“It’s crafted by your customers. So, it’s like a stock library shot to your brief. And the difference is, it’s made by genuine people who use the brand. They know it and love it.”

Lund says as social media becomes an increasingly pay-to-play market the importance of having creative that resonates with your customers is vital.

“If digital and social starts to cost more, you’re going to want your creative to perform. Personalisation is the greatest gift in our generation as marketers but for that to work and have appeal for an SMB is the same as for a global brand, I need volume. The superpower is in targeting precise audiences with precise messaging.

“So what are the options? Create 100 text versions and discard 90? But we live in a rich media world. People respond best to visual images. So what are the options for marketers? Start with 100, all of which could work but then optimise for the ten that work.

“The first solution is to use a creative agency or produce in-house, which can be high cost, low productivity. Then you could use stock libraries. But you’re missing out. User generated content outperforms stock images every time. It is 6.9x better. And who better to create content than the customers’ themselves?”

Lund believes today’s mobile phones with their advanced photography features have created the perfect storm for the rise of user-generated content.

“What’s changed, is why now? Every smartphone manufacturer on the planet is racing each other, and the war will be won by whoever makes the most creative tools. Whether that’s AR, vertical video, stop motion. One billion people have graduated from the school of Instagram. Users now have the tech and the talent,” he says.

Lund admits there is still an irrational prestige around traditional media.

“Are we too early? Possibly, but as soon as millennials hit the c-suite it will flip. Just look at those millennial companies. They’re overtaking and scaring the crap out of the incumbents, because they understand personalisation. People power disrupted accommodation and transport and it will shift marketing,” Lund insists.

“We love the brands that define us. It’s not brands we get annoyed with its their advertising.  So as marketers we need to tap into authentic advocacy that already exists.”

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Cec is the managing editor of KBB. She is a multimedia professional with over fifteen years experience as an editor on titles as diverse as SX, CULT, Better Pictures, Total Rock, MTV, fasterlouder, mynikonlife and Fantastic Living. She has spent the past four years working as a news journalist covering all the issues that matter in the political, health and LGBTIQ arena. She is the Head of Content at Pinstripe Media and a recent convert to the world of small business.

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