The Benefits of User-Generated Content
What is user-generated content (UGC)?
Basically, it’s any type of content that your customers create and helps your marketing activities.
It could be a video, image, blog or social media post.
More often than not today’s most popular user-generated content is more powerful than anything a brand could create.
Research shows that some of the most impactful UGC is video and photography.
Look at the impact of the likes of Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube that have transformed the way brands interact with their consumers.
Today’s consumers want to get a true reflection of what a brand can do for them and that’s where image and video can play a pivotal role.
Well, we all know that a picture is worth a thousand words, but a video is actually even more powerful.
Research has shown that on platforms like YouTube, UGC fan videos get 10 times more views than brand content.
So, unless users are saying something bad about you, then you need to be actively looking for ways to help consumers create, capture and want to share UGC.
UGC builds trust
When consumers see other consumers’ opinions online, they read them and take notice of them. If a person has enjoyed your product or service enough to create some content about it, people are likely to believe them. Create a good product or service and your customers will recommend it to others in their content. You don’t even have to ask a lot of the time.
UGC is unique content
Your customers will create different content than your marketing team, which keeps your business content interesting. They’ll offer fresh perspectives on your business. The variety will invite potential new customers to get in on the fun and engage people who are already following your business. It’s all good news for your marketing.
UGC boosts your reach on social media
Social media and UGC were made for each other. Whenever a follower creates content around your business on social media, they’re generating potential new customers for you and you haven’t even had to do a thing except run a successful business.
People tend to be friends with people who think like them and enjoy the same things. If a consumer raves about your product online, there’s a good chance their own followers and social media connections will also take interest in the product and, potentially, buy it.
UGC means your audience does the work for you
Marketing departments are battling constantly to create new campaigns and think of innovative ways of marketing your business. They also have to think about budgets and who they hire to help them. Consumers do some of the heavy lifting for you when they create UGC, allowing your business’ content team to create on other projects. Best of all, it’s free advertising a lot of the time, so by concentrating on keeping your customers happy, they’ll do you a big favor.
UGC gives you insight into your audience’s likes and dislikes
UGC gives you insights into the things that matter to your customers and you don’t have to send out surveys or ask for feedback (though feedback is important and you can if you wish). Price points, product quality, service quality… customers discuss all these things and more about businesses. This insight is valuable and will allow you to make essential changes.
UGC generates traffic to your website
One of the challenges of online marketing is that of driving traffic to your website. Although not every single follower will visit your website, you can be sure that when a customer creates UGC about your business, someone who sees it will be curious and then visit your website — so make sure your site provides a good user experience (UX) when they’re on it. Businesses have to work hard to maintain their online presence and visibility, so offer a UX on your site to increase your chances of a sale.
UGC is a remarkable opportunity to enjoy some free advertising and put your business in the spotlight without even trying. Customers who love your business will share their content about it with people who trust them and who may also become interested in your business. That’s a win for you, so make the most of it.