User-Generated Mediocrity?

Once the buzz of doing everything “user-generated” wears off, will people start realizing that true quality content, often comes from experts? Heinz seems to be finding this out as they try to wrap up a content where they ask consumers to create their next ad:

“But these companies have found that inviting consumers to create their advertising is often more stressful, costly and time-consuming than just rolling up their sleeves and doing the work themselves. Many entries are mediocre, if not downright bad, and sifting through them requires full-time attention. And even the most well-known brands often spend millions of dollars upfront to get the word out to consumers. Some people, meanwhile, have been using the contests as an opportunity to scrawl digital graffiti on the sponsor and its brand.”

“Scott Goodson, chief executive of StrawberryFrog, an advertising agency based in New York, said the shortcomings of contest entries — not just those for Heinz — refuted predictions that user-generated content might siphon work away from agencies. “This Heinz campaign, much like the same ones done by Doritos, Converse and Dodge, only goes to show how hard it is to do great advertising,” he said.”