Churning out a steady stream of new, high quality video content is challenging. Many marketers turn to crowdsourcing to gather ideas and generate content. Thanks to social media platforms, it has never been easier to crowdsource. While the process is fairly straightforward, not going about it properly may result in a lot of wasted time and effort. Understanding the basic pros and cons of crowdsourcing video will help you decide whether or not it is a good fit for your video content creation and, if so, how to execute it effectively.

Customer engagement

Reaching out to customers to get their opinions and showcase their contributions helps keep your brand fresh and in touch with your customers. You can use crowdsourced video to generate ongoing engagement around your products including how they’re used and how they’re shared. As long as customers keep producing video content about your products, you’ll keep them involved in your brand. The more customers remain involved with your brand, the more likely they are to keep buying your products.

Broad spectrum of ideas

Crowdsourcing allows you to harness a much wider spectrum of ideas, risks, and considerations than you would within your own company or a traditional outreach initiative, such as a focus group. Stakeholders are often happy to use their expertise to contribute to a cause that is important to them. The sheer size of the crowd and their specific knowledge, skill sets, and experience may uncover fantastic solutions that a group of so called experts would take weeks to compile.

Low price tag

Compared to what you would pay a dedicated professional to create video content focused on your products, the price for crowdsourced content is extremely low. Also, depending upon the reach of your brand, you may have a large number of people ready to “work” for you at any time. It could take weeks, or even months, to hire the right professional to shoot a new video series. In comparison, you could put out a request for video reviews of your latest product via Facebook or Twitter and receive dozens of responses within a couple of hours.

Lack of quality control

You get what you pay for, and crowdsourcing is no exception. While you may receive stellar content via a crowdsourcing request, most likely you’ll also receive a lot of subpar content. Going back to the video reviews request, receiving dozens of responses doesn’t mean that they’ll all be great responses. It may take hours to locate a handful of usable clips among the dozens of unusable clips. While it may be a good use of your time to sort through so many clips, it’s important to be realistic about the task at hand.

Before you decide to crowdsource for your company, consider whether or not it is the right choice for the job. Crowdsourcing is a great way to produce unbiased reviews and demonstrations. It’s not a great way to produce professional footage of a new factory or retail outlet. When you crowdsource video content, be as specific as possible with your requests and reward individuals who supply high quality content. For example, send a meaningful gift to anyone who submits a usable video review for your latest product.