It is no longer a secret that one of the best ways to increase your engagement in your social media channels is to leverage user-generated content. Even so, many brands still overlook this tactic. Considering that 60% of B2B marketers indicate generating engaging content as their primary marketing challenge, it’s shocking.
If you’re generating content for your brand, you probably have produced much different content such as blog posts, infographics, videos and more. Creating content takes a lot of manpower and time, so, understandably, it’s disappointing when the result isn’t on par. The issue usually comes down to how your audience connects to your content. A LinkedIn Survey found that the relevant, engaging content that triggers a response ranked the highest to produce connection.
Ok, let’s dive deeper into the survey results. What are the benefits of user-generated content? First, relevance. This means ideas and content are generated to speak directly to their interests, wants, needs, and challenges. Next, compelling stories. If you include your audience in the content creation process, your audience will automatically be interested in the narrative. And lastly, personalization. Of course, when your audience sees themselves reflected in your content, they will instantly love it. This is because they will feel a sense of ownership, elevated and valued. So, using user-generated content will definitely strengthen your relationship with your brand.
Now, what’s in it for your brand? There are many benefits to producing UGCs. First and the one mentioned in the beginning is, of course, engagement. As we’ve explored, inviting your audience to participate will build engagement. Then, there’s traffic. An interactive campaign that mobilizes your audience will drive traffic to your site and improve SEO rankings. Thirdly, we have shareability. When your audience participates, there is a higher chance that they will share the content to extend your brand reach.
Another thing is that UGCs promote originality. This is because every audience will contribute from their unique perspective. This will then give you insight that your competitors wouldn’t have access to. UGCs are also usually evergreen, meaning they have a long shelf life and inspire future campaign ideas. Lastly, it’s easy to produce. Why? Well, it’s because your audience does some of the heavy liftings in the content production! Definitely a win-win, right?
Take an example from Chobani, a Greek yogurt brand that, in 2011, encouraged their audience to share their love through videos, photos, and comments on their social media platforms. The submitted content then was used in their marketing campaigns. This brand advocacy then resulted in a spectacular 225.9% year over year increase in sales.
Now on to the million-dollar question; how do we create great user-generated content? It’s simple! Here are two basic steps you can follow to kickstart your UGC Campaign;
Identify your objective
Identifying or developing your objectives for your UGC campaign is vital. The reason being, different objectives will result in a different way to run a campaign. For example, a UGC campaign designed for maximum reach wouldn’t run the same way as the one that aims to get the most high-quality UGC possible. Keep in mind that your objective will also vary depending on what business stage you’re at. Say you’re just starting out or you’re launching a new product, then your objective will be awareness.
Plan your strategy
The key to this step is to make it as easy as possible for your audience to upload their content. One of the best ways to start your UGC campaign is through a competition or an incentive on your social media platforms. It’s also not hard to do:
- Come up with a branded hashtag, and make sure that it is catchy and easy to remember.
- Give an incentive or a prize. It doesn’t need to be fancy; just make sure it attracts everyone to ensure participation.
- Set the terms such as the campaign period and any prize details. Explain to your audience exactly how they can participate. Include this information on your website or within the post on social media.
- Tell your consumers about the initiative, in as many ways as possible. Tell existing customers via email and post about it on social media.
It’s not difficult, right? Now once the UGC roll in, take the time to go through and choose the best ones so you can use them in your future campaigns. If you’ve put user-generated content to work but you’re still feeling stuck with your content, Digital Squad Singapore are always happy to help. Just reach out to us for more guidance!