Doing what you love is the cornerstone of having abundance in your life." Wayne Dyer's thoughts are well suited to Kiara Miller. She has been working as a content marketing professional at 'The Speakingnerd’. Her passion for writing is also visible in the innovative joys of material she provides to her readers.
In this post, we will discuss the importance and benefits of user-generated content and how this ace your marketing strategy.
“People would like brands more if brands sounded more like people” - Social Native
We all are very well aware of the fact that teamwork always pays off. However, who can be a better partner for a business than its customers? This is how exactly user-generated content works. It allows you to collaborate with your existing customers to attract and acquire new customers. Don’t get confused, we will explain everything in-depth in this elaborate guide on user-generated content.
Moving ahead, in the world of digital marketing, a new wave of user-generated content marketing is trending nowadays. This concept is not new but to gain people’s trust and attention, UGC is proving itself to be quite effective in the contemporary business world.
Hence, if you are also someone, who is looking to ace the marketing strategy of user-generated content, then this guide is for you. It will effectively highlight everything you want to know about user-generated content. But first things first, we need to understand the definition of user-generated content.
What is User Generated Content?
User-generated content refers to content provided by users in different forms expressing their interaction or experience with a brand. In short, any type of brand-centric content that is created by customers is known as UGC or user-generated content.
Let us simply comprehend this with an example a simple example. Whenever you post your picture or review of your favorite jeans by tagging their official social media handles, you are indirectly creating content for the brand that can be used in attracting new customers.
This way, you are not just flaunting your jeans to your followers, you are producing content that can be an asset to the company.
After understanding what exactly is the user-generated content, the next section will shed light on various types of UGC that are used by businesses in creating brand authority.
Types of User Generated Content
We all are very well aware of the fact that videos are already proving themselves to be the king of digital marketing. Similarly, using video to strategically communicate your brand’s message to your target audience can assist in gathering your target audience’s attention in the most engaging way possible.
Below mentioned are some of how you can use videos as a UGC
1. Testimonials - Clients can describe their experience with your brand in multiple video lengths.
2. Explainer - Customers can show the whole operational process of how your product works.
3. Promotional - In this, your customers can tell all the benefits they availed while using your product.
4. Interviews - You can ask multiple questions to your customers like rapid-fire rounds and record their reactions and answers.
Moreover, videos are an effective way to connect with your target audience on a personal level. Furthermore, when you use real customers and their stories instead of celebrities, your message would be more impactful.
Reviews are the most common form of UGC that is often used by businesses to gain the attention and trust of their target audiences. It is a proven fact that the majority of people check online reviews before buying a product or service. To substantiate, let us have a look at some of the facts illustrated below.
- 91% of online customers of age between 18 to 34 old trust online reviews.
- 93% of consumers believe that reviews posted online have influenced their purchase decisions.
- 94% claim that a negative online review has convinced them to avoid a recommended business.
- 4 in 5 shoppers have changed their decisions about recommended products after reading negative reviews.
We believe that these statistics were convincing enough about the role online reviews play in influencing the purchase decisions of your target audience. That is the only reason many businesses keep a check on what their customers are thinking and posting about them. Alongside, many businesses post their top-rated reviews on their website or in the product description. This will assist in keeping your viewers as well as Google’s EAT principle satisfied as well.
Nowadays, businesses have realized that SEO is far away from the dead. This is the reason blogging has become another rising trend in digital marketing. Many bloggers post “how-to” tutorials on their social media handles and their websites. It is a great way to get validation and recognition in a short time.
That being the case, you can collaborate with industry-oriented bloggers and send them some of your products in exchange for user-generated content from their side. This will assist you in tapping their target audience and getting them to purchase from you. In fact, as per the statistics given by BigCommerce, 89% of the marketers say that the return on investment from this type of influencer marketing is better than any other marketing channel.
Another form of UGC that is popular and successful in gaining the attention of your target audience is organizing events. They can be a great way to interact with your target audience at a personal level.
Moreover, later the captured moments can be used as a UGC to promote it on your social media handles. This will not only boost your social media presence but also will assist in gaining the attention of your target audience. You can organize events both physically and virtually to reach your audience.
However, you need to make sure that your event should not seem like a promotional event but should be more of an engaging and interactive event. This will encourage more and more target audiences to get involved and enjoy your organized event.
5. Hashtag Campaigns
Everybody is very well aware of the fact that hashtags assist in enhancing the growth and reach of your social accounts. That is the reason why many businesses start hashtag campaigns to reach wider audiences.
For instance, we all have heard of the Ice Bucket Challenge and the immense popularity it gained all around the world. This campaign was started by the ALS association in the year 2012. The massive success of the campaign assisted the organization to collect donations of $31.5 million. This is how the power of social media and UGC works.
Similarly, you can also start various hashtag campaigns for your business and collect an impressive amount of user-generated content to further use to attract new customers.
Moving ahead, next you need to know why exactly your business needs to work on UGC.
Exceptional Reasons to Choose User Generated Content
It is a cost-effective medium
As a business owner, you might also want to earn maximum profits by spending a minimum amount of money. This highlights the first reason why you should choose UGC, it is one of the most cost-effective mediums available in the marketing world.
To elaborate, while creating UGC content all you need is support from customers and an engaging way to present the content. All of your content will be generated for you by your loyal consumers. This way you will save up a lot of money that was supposed to be spent on generating ideas, execution, and post-production levels. Hence, it is one of the most effective ways to communicate with your target audience on a limited budget.
Moreover, as per the statistics, UGC-based advertisements get 4 times more click-through rates and a 50% drop in cost-per-click than average. Hence, you will not only save money on content creation, but UGC will also assist you in saving money on your overall marketing budget as well.
It acts as a social proof
Nobody can deny the fact that believing is seeing in the contemporary business world. Similarly, if you want your customers to trust you, first you need to give them some valid reasons.
Having said that, when you make people believe that other shoppers are also purchasing your products, it will also encourage them to make the next move on their purchasing journey.
Let us comprehend this with an example: whenever you decide to buy something online or offline for the first time, what is the first thing you do? Check their reviews online on different platforms. Right? It is not only you, in fact, as per statistics, but almost 9 out of 10 consumers also read reviews before buying a product or service.
This stat proves how important social proof is to generate good leads in business and there is nothing better than user-generated content to present as social proof.
Through user-generated content, you will be able to showcase the experiences of your existing customers. It will act as social proof for your target audience which will encourage them in trusting you and making a purchase from you.
It generates strong insights
Another reason for investing in user-generated content is when you collect reviews, it also gives you honest feedback on your consumers’ experience with your business. This will assist in getting strong insights about the likes and dislikes your consumers have towards your brand.
These insights will act as your key performance indicators which will assist you in determining the strengths and weaknesses of your brand. After identifying the dislikings you can eliminate them in order to enhance the overall efficiency and performance of your business. This will assist you in keeping your customers happy and satisfied.
It influences purchasing decisions
When you are in a business, you have hundreds of competitors to compete with. Hence, it is very essential for you to keep the interest of your customers inclined towards your business.
As per statistics, 79% of people say UGC highly influences their purchasing decisions. We believe that these statistics can be a good 'social proof' to convince you about the other reason for investing your efforts in user-generated content.
It will assist in influencing the purchase decision of your target audience which can assist you in enhancing the overall growth of your business.
Extraordinary Benefits of User Generated Content
1. It enhances the conversion rates
As UGC can gain your target audience’s attention and trust, it will enhance your chances of attracting leads. The more people trust your brand the more they will be inclined towards making repetitive purchases.
Further, the study of Photoslurp claims that user-generated content photos are 5 times more likely to convert a lead. This implies that if you effectively utilize user-generated content in creating an engaging message, there are pretty good chances that you will convert more leads.
2. It increases brand authenticity
In the world of millions of brands selling all across the globe, the customers today crave authenticity. It is one of the most crucial factors that decide the future of your business. If people see you as an authentic brand, it will contribute to retaining them.
Moreover, as discussed above user-generated content acts as social proof. Hence, it assists in earning the trust and confidence of your target audience. Reviews and testimonials presented as user-generated content will contribute to making your brand more authentic and reliable.
This will encourage your customers to make a purchase from you which will contribute to the overall enhancement of your business revenue.
3. It boosts customer loyalty
Earning customer loyalty is not a piece of cake for businesses. It requires content efforts and determination to retain customers. However, if you will use customer testimonials, it will make them feel valued and heard. For instance, let us assume your customer’s video review got featured. Now that video reviews are running on all social media platforms.
It will not only give your customer influencer vibes but will also encourage him/her to purchase from you. This way you will be successful in earning loyal customers. Along with this, using their UGC, you will also be able to attract new customers.
4. It assists in ranking higher on Google
Did you know that effectively using UGC will also assist in enhancing your SEO ranking? It is not something to say, a stats from Kissmetrics proves that 25% of search results for the top 20 biggest brands are linked to user-generated content all around the globe.
The major reason behind this is that companies usually add specific keywords, backlinks, and internal sources of the product mentioned in the reviews. Along with this, reviews are usually refined before posting. These basic strategies and tactics assist in keeping Google happy and satisfied which contributes to ranking higher on the search engine result page.
To encapsulate, user-generated content is like the new wave that can make or break your digital marketing strategy. Moreover, if you are new in the business then hopping on the trend of user-generated content will be very beneficial for your business. Further, the above guide will effectively help you in understanding the whole concept of UGC and how you can use multiple types of UGC to avail its mind-blowing benefits.
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