Want your customers to spend more for your product? Research proves you should promote it with user-generated content. Over 90% of consumers say it has more influence over their buying decisions than promotional emails and even search engine results.
User-generated content has the necessary potential to influence multiple key performance metrics, both positively and negatively. That’s why it’s absolutely essential to learn how to earn it and use it the right way.
What Does User Generated Content Mean?
User Generated Content or UGC is any content that is generated and published by volunteer contributors. Often, these contributors are followers who promote a brand rather than the brand promoting itself. Content of any type, including website pages, blogs, social media posts, images, and testimonials, can be UGC.
But Why UGC is So Successful?
UGC campaigns are a consistent player in the marketing world because they have been so successful. But why are they so successful? Why are businesses inspire real people to share their products instead of crafting their own ads?
Put the customer in front:
Customer-orientated businesses are on the rise, as companies have to keep up with the ever-evolving trends of their audiences continuously. In this fast-paced, digital world, attention-spans can be snapped away with a click of a finger. If the businesses aren’t catering only to their customers, their customers simply will find another business that is.
Online users are become increasingly savvy nowadays in knowing which companies are using marketing tactics and which ones are being transparent and authentic.
People Don’t Trust Marketers:
In recent years, the idea of sleazy marketing has increased to unparalleled heights. The average customer, today, is no longer impressed by pushy sales tactics. Instead, they desire stories, they want connection, and they wish for interaction with other humans.
In reality, we’re acquiring into UGC content for centuries, but there are new media platforms now to make it more accessible across the online world. Almost 92% of people trust a recommendation from another person over any other marketing content.
Over63% of consumers said that they would willingly buy from a company they consider to be authentic over a competitor. Authenticity is essential in today’s online world. TV commercials and billboards ads are no longer leading customers these days. Instead, they actively choose their own fate and want a say in who they want to and don’t want to buy from.
But how do they determine who to buy from? They decide to buy from the brands that have the same values as them, brands that connect to them on a human level.
Creates a Community:
Brands today are constantly trying to win consumers over, UGC brings together everyone in one big happy family. It’s usually seen that people like the feeling of being a part of something.
The four things that encourage people to feel like being a part of a community.
- Shared emotional connection
- Integration and fulfillment of needs
An element that UGC brings to the table is that the members always feel like they influence the community. UGC can also push that emotional connection too.
UGC enables users to create content. They do it for free and for several reasons, whether to build a connection with like-minded people, to share their experience, or to be in with a chance of winning some goodies or discounts.
This certainly is cheaper than spending thousands or even millions for prime-time TV commercials. The best part of UGC is that the users run the show, while marketers don’t have to spill their pockets on marketing campaigns that may or might not perform well.
Brand engagements have risen by 28% when consumers are presented to a combination of user-generated content and professional marketing content.
For example, Starbucks encouraged its customers to doodle their white Starbucks cups and post images as entries for a competition for a limited edition Starbucks cup. Almost 4,000 customers submitted entries in just three weeks, proving that people were ready and are willing to engage with the brand.
How to blend user-generated content into your marketing?
With any new marketing strategy, it’s crucial to have a plan for collecting and using user-generated content. 86% of the marketers claim they’ve tried to combine user-generated content into their campaigns, but only 27% of them had a strategy for doing so.
Here are a few things that you’ll want to decide upon before launching your own UGC campaign:
- Determine the goal of your UGC campaign
- Create a system to collect consumer-generated content
- Be clear about what do you want and what you’re offering
- Consult legal specialists
- Be prepared for anything
- Learn from negative UGC, but showcase the positive
The potential of UGC is easy to see, and there’s no doubt that we’ll be seeing much much more of it in the near future as brands power into their customers and take a step back from traditional pushy sales tactics. It can show people the capability of your product or service, boost social proof during the purchasing process, and spread awareness.