One of the most integral aspects of marketing, is the humanisation of your brand to build authentic connection and trust with your customers. Such, is fundamental in ensuring that your brand’s messages stick out, well above your competitors. But with such a heavily flooded social media and advertising environment, that is no easy feat. Consumers are shown thousands of ads every day, so how can you stand out? One way, is User-Generated Content (UGC).
User-generated content, is content created by those outside of your business. It is authentic and fan-made content, made by consumers, social media followers or influencers. Examples could be a blog post, a podcast, an uploaded video, a social media post, an image or any other sort of third-party content. The user-generated content can then be shared by businesses across their social media accounts or website for promotion, usually for free or very cheap. Ultimately, UGC is advertising content, created by those who love what you do.
User-Generated Content works to build trust - people see others engaging with your business and that builds ‘social proof’. We trust other consumers, more so than large flashy business campaigns. A wider audience can also be established, with peers and influencers acting to broaden your online reach. This means more people, trusting in what you do. Further to this, it’s simply easier! Creating content takes time, energy and money, pulling you away from your main focuses. A high amount of UGC, means you have more resources to pour into ensuring your product/service can continue to thrive.
So how can you get your fans to start creating content? The first step, is to understand them. Use the inbuilt analytic tools of social site like Facebook and Instagram, or opt for a more in depth third-party tool, like Sprout Social. From here you can collect important information about who is engaging with you and how they are doing it. Then, decide on which Social Media platform is best for you to focus on with your user-generated content. Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, Linked In and Twitter all tend to be best, with their own respective flavours and services.
With that in mind, you can formulate a more specific strategy. Set some goals around what you want to achieve and work out ways to get there. Competitions work specifically well, where you can ask your followers to create any sort of content, with the chances of winning something related to your brand. Make it specific! Let your audience know what you want and why you want it.
Once UGC begins coming in, be specific with what you share. Give recognition to the creators and determine what will be best for you to show everyone else. Ask yourself, what will generate the best engagement from the people I want to be engaging?
Now you are on your way to fully harnessing the power of User-Generated content, but it doesn’t end here! If you need more information or support regarding it all, get in touch with us. We can help you formulate strategies specific to your business and follow through with them.