Wayin mines quality UGC for brands

Social media creates a big data challenge for marketers that gets bigger every day. Hundreds of millions of posts go out every 24 hours on Twitter alone.

Yet it’s a challenge eminently worth tackling, because engaging with user-generated content has huge advantages for brands. Adapting and responding to user-generated content avoids the authenticity hurdle brands face with first-party content. And consumers are more empowered than ever to tune out and scroll past anything that remotely feels like an ad.

Identifying and acting on high quality user-generated content is easier said than done. There’s the sheer volume. Data visualization tools can help bring highly engaging posts to the forefront, but without quality control, brands could end up resharing or chiming in on a very brand-unsafe topic.

Denver-based Wayin wants to help marketers solve both problems at once, with flexible social media exploration and visualization tools, backed by content screening and scoring systems that identify highquality and brand-safe content. From those high-value elements, the platform provides tools to power shared social content and feeds to web pages, live event displays, and on-screen tickers. “At the end of the day, it’s best to persuade people to take action based on the social proof provided by other consumers,” said Jordan Slabaugh, Wayin’s VP of marketing.

Among Wayin’s top brand clients are Major League Baseball and most of its member teams, who have been using the system’s heat mapping to track buzz around playoff contenders. With the Chicago Cubs and New York Mets and Yankees enjoying strong seasons, there was little surprise that teams in those huge media markets were leading the pack.

But the tools also uncovered that the Washington Nationals, whose fortunes faded quickly in September, were still a top trending team just days before they were eliminated from the postseason. This helps teams understand how well their social efforts are activating their fan bases, and map out the most influential individuals participating in social discussions.

Wayin’s dashboard readouts include Klout scores for top commenters and contributors, so brands know who to focus their attention on in every engagement. The platform also offers a user-expandable knowledge base about top posters, meaning brands can follow social media celebrities and influencers at a data-driven level, looking for the best opportunities to cross-promote and engage.

To keep user-generated content aligned with brand values, Wayin’s reporting and visualization tools feature automated filters to weed out strong language and sensitive, potentially offensive media. This keeps the social feed supplied with messages that are more likely to be positive and brand-safe. Before user-generated content goes to a Web waterfall or an in-stadium display, curators have a chance to manually verify the pre-screened posts.

At present, Wayin spans the top social networks for consumer-grade user-generated content: Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Ahead next is a new workflow for marketers looking to build stronger relationships with content creators. The platform will soon add tools making it easier to reach out to a poster, not only to seek permission to reshare, but to offer compensation as well. 

“That way you can tell users that they are not just giving up their content, but that the brand recognizes the value in it,” said Andy Kershaw, Wayin VP of strategy and partnerships.

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