Gone are the days where brands used to drive passive customers through advertisements. In this digital era, people have become savvier and hold control over their buying decisions. They do research, judge brands based on their online presence, and read reviews to finally make the decision. Thus online presence and content play vital roles in customer’s purchasing decisions. Moreover, as people trust real customers rather than marketing, user-generated content serves as a key marketing strategy to grow the customer base.
Wondering what user-generated content is and how to create it? Alright, let’s get into it quickly without any ado.
What is User-Generated Content?
User-generated content or shortly UGC is any content including text, image, audio, or any other graphics that are created and shared online by users rather than brands. UGC is generally posted on social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and on websites. In short, it is the happening version of word-of-mouth marketing.
User-generated content is one of the most effective marketing strategies to drive smart customers to your business. As someone truly said that user-generated content is the next big wave of the web.
Why User-Generated Content?
The straight answer is: People trust real people who are already customers of your brand as they know the best about your brand. Here are the advantages of making user-generated content a key part of your marketing strategy.
Boosts Reach & Build Brand Awareness
People always love to interact with real people and real stories rather than a marketing campaign. Moreover, when your consumers create a post about your product they recently bought and are happy with and share it on their stories or wall with proper hashtags, more people (who you can’t reach) get to see it.
Thus without investing your time and money, UGC leads a brand awareness campaign.
Promotes the Authenticity of the Brand
Nearly 92% of customers trust when a product is recommended by other people. Hence, when you repost user-generated content it looks more original and builds more audiences to your future posts.
Not at least 20% of users trust brands on social media. Exactly this is why user-generated content has become a necessity not an option for many brands. UGC influences new audiences as it clearly shows the happy faces of existing customers.
No matter what the strategy is, your end goal should be driving customers and making sales. As your brand reputation, authenticity, and trust goes up with user-generated content, customers would follow you by default if everything goes right.
Now comes the big question- how to create user-generated content that brings you, customers, all along the year, right? Well, here is the quick guide.
Steps to Create User-Generated Content
Inspire Users with Engaging Content
User engagement is the key to conversion and an inspiring post can initiate the engagement.
Repost or share a user-generated post or story to enable your audience to feel the product or service as the original creator did. This way you may see a lot of queries about the product and comments if the post is inspiring and adorable.
Thus it not only creates brand desire but also trusts as they see the consumer’s satisfaction.
Create a Buzz
With many brands in the market, users don’t recognize or remember you unless you don’t create a buzz. Although this doesn’t bring you a long term engagement or loyal customers, in the beginning, it’s a good way to captivate users and turn them to your side.
Announce giveaways, ask your followers to tag their friends, or share creative user-generated posts with your hashtag and offer prizes or exclusive discounts in return. Remember not everybody comes for prizes, some may participate to gain more likes and get featured. So, tell them clearly what exactly you want them to do. This way you will get enough reusable user-generated content to use in the coming days.
Build Strong Social Media Presence
Today, social media is not just an entertainment space, over 50% of consumers check for the brands on social media to make decisions. Hence, as a modern brand, you should have a strong presence on all social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc.
To establish a strong presence, you will need to post engaging content at least 4-5 days a week or daily to stay in touch with your followers. Else there are chances that they simply abandon you. Analyze what interests your followers the most, what’s trending, and prepare a calendar accordingly to value your followers.
Ask for Reviews
Around 91% of customers trust reviews and consider them to make purchasing decisions. So, nudge and motivate your consumers to leave a review on feedback or create a user-generated review content and make it your promotion resource.
Remember people don’t show interest in ordinary stuff. So, take a snapshot of the review, edit the picture with eye-catching graphics using tools like PosterMyWall, and share it on social media. This not only inspires other customers to share their reviews but also drives new customers to your business.
Reviews help in learning your customer’s experience and improving your products. If you miss this pot, you will likely miss tons of content and customers as well.
Build a Content Library
No matter if you are a new or established brand, creating fresh content that attracts customers is an endless challenge. User-generated content acts as a saviour here. With user-generated content campaigns, you could generate tons of interesting stuff and build a content library to share periodically.
Analyze the Data
This is the most important step you should perform regularly. Customer’s behaviours and demands change most often. So, it is crucial to learn their minds to stay in their minds by sharing what’s trending in your industry.
Furthermore, you need to analyze what customers are talking about your brands, hashtags that people are using for your brand, and how your user-generated content campaigns performed. This way you will know the things you’ve missed out on so that you can deliver the best in the next campaign.
Tips for Creating User- Generated Content
- Always ask permission through DM or comment from the creator before you repost or re-share or use any user-generated content to avoid copyright infringement.
- Give credits to the original creators for their content. Here credits can be just a mention or prize or money (whatever the creator demands if you feel the deal is okay) in return for using their content.
- Inspire users to create more. Hence present the user-generated content in a way that impresses viewers.
- Get deep insights into the analytics of your campaign and data collected to better understand and perform.
User-generated content is all about content created by users that trust your brand. As most people trust products and brands recommended by other people reviews user-generated content play key roles in boosting your customer base and sales. Fortunately, creating user-generated content is not a painful task as all you need to do is inspire users to create content, promote it to drive new customers finally.