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Digital Rights Management with UGC
Digital Rights Management with UGC

How to seek explicit contributor consent when leveraging user-generated content

Lauren Askew avatar
Written by Lauren Askew
Updated over a week ago

The role of user-generated content (UGC) in marketing is more relevant than ever but it comes with some challenges and has raised legal questions about when and how it can be used.

To get the most out of UGC and avoid breaching copyright laws, it’s important to understand that there are legal rights that must be considered before using UGC, and the issues around Digital Rights Management (DRM).

DRM originally existed to protect companies but now the tables have turned. With the rise of UGC and brands incorporating assets created by their consumers into their marketing, these brands are now the ones who need to seek contributor consent in order to avoid potential legal hassles.

Leveraging UGC with Miappi

Miappi is the all-in-one marketing solution for discovering and leveraging great user-generated content (UGC) and managing creative relationships with your consumers.

Using Miappi technology, you can power your marketing campaigns and digital channels - including websites, paid advertising, live events, retail signage, ecommerce pages and social media - with rights-ready UGC.

But first things first, how can you get consent from customers to use their images, videos and comments in your marketing?

How brands can gain explicit consent with Miappi

There are three different ways you can explicitly seek contributor consent in order to protect yourself when sharing UGC. Let’s take a look at each of these options.

1. Rights via Approval

The most popular and easiest way brands can reach out to customers and secure explicit consent from them is by using Miappi’s Engage feature to send them a Direct message on Instagram.

The process couldn’t be simpler. Once you have found a piece of content you wish to request consent for, just click on the paper plane icon for that social media post on the Curate page of the Miappi dashboard.

Rights via Miappi’s Engage link allows you to create a message (you can type a brand new text or ‘generate’ one of several pre-written messages), which can be sent privately as a direct message and will include a link to the terms and conditions under which you intend to use the person’s content. To save you time, the same Ts&Cs link will auto-populate into other posts until you want to change it.

The social media user can then give their consent by following the link to a landing page and clicking the 'Approve' button. The landing page looks like this:

With just a couple of simple steps to follow, this process requires the least effort from the social media user while ensuring you have the correct permissions and digital rights to use your most valuable UGC.

2. Rights via Response

Miappi’s Engage feature also gives brands the option to seek consent via an @mention on the relevant post. The “Mention” feature encourages the social media user to respond publicly via the comments section, using an approval hashtag, set by the brand.

Just copy the message and paste it as a comment on the post you would like to use. This route allows the Instagram user to give their consent by @mentioning you (the brand) at the same time as using a relevant hashtag e.g. '#yesCornetto.'

NOTE: You will be automatically Mentioned when the user replies to your comment. It's essential that they @mention your brand in their comment so that we see and record this within the Miappi dashboard.

Rights by response is a very simple and fast process method to request rights from users. The request is sent to the content creator via the corresponding social network, so the entire process takes place on the same social platform. The user can then easily approve the request by responding with the designated hashtag, to grant rights.

3. Rights via Registration

If you want to collect rights-approved user-generated content direct from the consumer via any of your digital touchpoints, then the Public Form from Miappi is the feature for you.

Using Public Form, you can bypass social media and collect content from the user directly into a form on your website, app or another digital channel. Public Form lets you present a link to your terms and conditions at the point of upload so that you can get the appropriate consent every time.

After completing the form with the required information, the user will then accept your T&C’s and submit the form to grant approval.

If you have any further questions about gaining the correct permissions for your UGC use, please feel free to get in touch with your assigned Account Manager.

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