Many small businesses are not aware of the value of user-generated content (UGC). UGC is all around us in the form of social media posts, customer reviews, and images. It can be extremely valuable for optimizing your brand’s presence.
Particularly in light of the pandemic, UGC has revolutionized how consumers and brands interact on social media. UGC offers customers the unique opportunity to be part of a brand’s growth rather than being a spectator. It is a great way to engage because brands can connect with their fans by showing their product or service, and users, in turn, get noticed, featured, and possibly grow their following.
Through user-generated content, we want to help turn your customers into advocates. However, before we get into the step-by-step guide, let’s first define UGC.
What Is User-Generated Content?
User-generated content is content created by unpaid customers, fans, and contributors. It is similar to word-of-mouth marketing: other people telling their friends about your brand. In UGC, people are sharing your business online with their friends.
Your friend can post a tweet about a great experience at a hotel that they stayed at or a product they enjoyed. That’s UGC. The literal UGC meaning is seen when your favorite brand posts Instagram Stories from guests at an event they hosted. UGC is when someone uploads a TikTok video about the best lipstick they have ever used.
Brands can use user-generated content to meet the changing needs of their customers. Utilizing a UGC platform can be a lucrative scheme for brands. Brands need to know how to use the various types of user-generated content to improve their marketing strategies.
Types of User-Generated Content
You’ll see that UGC is all around you if you start to look. It is easy to see only the negative, such as poor customer reviews and angry customers ranting. However, it is possible to see the positive effects of your brand by looking at user-generated content.
You can extract user-generated content from many sources. Various dynamic platforms offer a vast UGC stack that brands can use for advertising. Here are the top types of UGC:
- Testimonials or reviews: These can be posted on your website, on review sites outside of your site, or discussion boards.
- Blogs: Bloggers frequently display products that include tutorials on how to use them and videos showing how they transform your appearance. Blog content is a UGC platform that helps you to be recognized by large audiences.
- Social media posts: Mentioning and tagging your brand on their social media accounts. A product image often accompanies this type.
- Video content: Users can show off your products through videos, particularly the unboxing videos that showcase all the insides and how they work. Instagram stories are mainly made up of short videos uploaded by actual customers to Instagram and tagged with the brand. Brands can repost stories as UGC to engage more people and generate valid promotions to generate valid promotions.
- Contests: Contests and giveaways are great ways of increasing brand awareness. You can set the terms and conditions to attract attention to your social media account. For example, contestants must follow your account, tag three others, share your post in their stories, etc.
Building brand awareness and trust, regardless of whether you’ve had bad press in the past or are just starting, is a great goal. Any UGC is the best way to build credibility with your customers. Don’t forget to track keywords and phrases that are related to your brand to maximize the benefits of UGC.
How to Grow Your Business With UGC
Today, brands must compete for attention online. Buyers are now more selective in choosing the brands they interact with and buy from, particularly the fickle Gen Z.
UGC can be used at all stages of a buyer’s journey in order to increase engagement and conversions. You can use customer-centric content on social media, email, landing pages, and checkout pages.
You have a few options to increase your brand’s UGC. It is simple to ask customers at the point of purchase or confirmation emails. Make it simple and include links to reviews or social sites. Here are tips on how to maximize customer posts for your business:
1. Select the most influential social networks for your campaign.
It is crucial to understand the location of your target audience on social media and where potential advocates are most influential. While Instagram is great for sharing visuals on the platform, you should first ask yourself whether that’s the network where your target audience is located.
When choosing a social networking platform, consider your audience and your goals. It is essential to choose a network carefully and create a social environment that allows you to deliver quality content and engage with customers. This will help you stand out and foster long-lasting relationships.
2. Set UGC goals.
Your user-generated content marketing strategy needs to have specific goals and guidelines. Here are the common goals of marketers that align with user-generated content marketing strategies:
- Increased brand engagement: While everyone wants to see more likes, setting engagement as a goal for user-generated content marketing campaigns is a smart move. Influencers are known for sparking conversation through their content. Your channels will see more likes, comments, and mentions. You will need the right social media analytics tools to benchmark your efforts.
- Higher conversion rates: The power of precise UGC meaning and social commerce is immense. People will flock to social media for research. Consumers like and follow brands on Facebook to learn about new products or services. It is important to increase conversions by using reviews and unboxing displays.
- Building brand trust: A UGC platform builds trust with consumers. So, track keywords and phrases that are related to your brand. You can then measure whether people are leaving more positive feedback on social media or review sites.
- Educating more people: Track common questions and concerns on social media about your business. Influencers are great at cutting through the noise and giving clear answers. Listening to conversations will allow you to determine whether similar questions are being asked after and before your UGC campaign.
- Reduce time spent on content creation: UGC could be a great way to save time if you have a team that needs more social content. You can save time by aggregating hashtags, comments, and photos, during the content creation.
3. Let your audience know the kind of content you need.
Your advocates need to be given the proper guidance, regardless of whether you are asking for images or customer thoughts. Make sure you are transparent about brand guidelines and user-generated content regulations.
There are many ways to encourage UGC campaign hashtags and social media challenges. You can create a campaign hashtag and build interest in your topic.
Make sure to check your guidelines and hashtags regularly to avoid confusion or errors. You’re giving online trolling the chance to dilute and distract from your message. Make your brand’s mission and persona clear. To build a valuable library of UGC, don’t be afraid to identify the content that best aligns with your brand.
4. Focus on building and engaging your community.
User-generated content has a lot of fantastic qualities. It sparks engagement and strengthens the community.
A mention or repost by a brand can provide consumers with the perfect surprise and delight moment. Consumers are more likely to purchase from or engage with a brand if they share their social posts.
These shares create a connection between customer and brand, and they expose your audience and audience to new content and people, which can lead to viral posts.
You are a community manager and must create a persona to represent your brand. UGC is the glue that brings people together through conversations and builds bridges between them. It builds credibility. If done right, it will drive users down your marketing funnel.
5. Measure and analyze your UGC.
It is essential to measure your user-generated content marketing strategy if you want it to succeed. Benchmarking is essential, regardless of your goals.
Good reporting is critical to a user-generated content campaign. Social analytics tools allow you to track your overall engagement using UGC. You can access detailed audience reports to see which posts drive engagement and growth, regardless of whether you post to Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
Tools and software allow you to use your social data to analyze conversations and content surrounding your brand. These social tools are powerful and allow you to measure your efforts, uncover new opportunities, and share user-generated material.
User-generated content is a popular marketing strategy. It is affordable, easy to use, and engaging. UGC can help you grow your business, establish authentic connections with your customers, and increase your SEO.
Start growing your business with UGC campaigns that bring value to your brand. You can also partner with a digital marketing firm like Advanced Digital Media Services for SEO services in Denver to help more people see the potential of your product or service.
Don’t miss an opportunity to connect with your audience. Contact our team today for more information on how experts in SEO can increase brand awareness and optimize your brand’s online presence.