Social media companies want to make their user experience genuine with every update. This means that it is not as easy as it was before for brands to reach out to their target audiences. The recent updates made it clear that authentic content was the key to improve reach. User-generated-content plays an important part in today’s content marketing strategy. It gives loyal users a chance to rave about the brands they love. But what exactly does UGC mean and how does one include it in their content marketing planner?
What is User-Generated Content?
Brainvire believes users are fond of brands and will go extents to support them. Businesses can leverage this love from their loyal users topromote brands on social media. User-generated content or UGC includes all content created by the actual users to promote a brand. UGC includes any form of content including videos, images, texts, and more.
Why Focus on User-Generated Content?
The internet is buzzing with people day in and day out. There are around 4.5 billion of us on the internet with around 90.4% of them being millennials. According to statistics, 86% of the Millenials have said that UGC is a reliable indicator of quality. The same study also suggests that 93% of the consumers find UGC helpful in making a purchase decision. The word of mouth seems to take center stage in these purchases. The following are the reasons for including UGC in our marketing strategy:
It Promotes Authenticity
Let us take for example this study conducted by Stackla, where it states “ 92% of the marketers think that the content they create is taken as authentic, but according to 51% consumers say that not even half of a brand’s content resonates as authentic”. The same study also suggests that consumers are 2.4 times more likely to consider UGC as authentic versus that brand created content.
For example, let us consider a Youtuber promoting a brand product instead of the brand themselves.
The video was posted on the 24th of November 2018 and has generated around 821,021 views with 26k likes and 3k comments. This means that people are more moved to appreciate your products when they are promoted by actual layman users.
Having a loyal fan base ultimately boils down to the fact that your brand has gained their trust. And what better way to gain trust than to allow users themselves talk about your brand. Whether a product or a service, people want to know what they are in for. Let us for example see, how Instagram affects the restaurant industry.
In a study conducted by Zizzi, people in the 18-35 age groups spend around 5 days browsing food images on Instagram. Also, 30% people would avoid a restaurant if it had a lower than average Instagram presence. Also, note that consumers are looking for the posts of people that have been to the restaurants themselves.
What is the Best UGC strategy?
Since UGCs acts as proof of a brand’s authenticity online. These are the content strategies that brands need to look out for:
Reviews: Reviews are the online equivalent of word-of-mouth referrals. According to Consumerist reports, about 70% of consumers rely on online reviews before purchasing. Ratings and reviews are the best way to put forward the word-of-mouth to your consumers.
One can allow consumers to write reviews on their websites or on third party websites. Both on-site and off-site reviews play an important part in customer conversion.
Rewarding: Asking your users to create content related to your products in return for rewards is one way to draw user-generated content. Rewards could include a free product to the lucky winner or discounts can drive people to create content for you. For instance, Keisel Guitars ran a contest where participants were to submit guitar solos on the backing tracks provided by the company. They rewarded their contestants with prizes that included custom guitars and other related products.
Video promotions: Video content is highly consumed amongst internet users and Youtube is the crown jewel of UGC. A popular YouTuber/TikToker is likely to have at least a million followers that are loyal to their content. This means that dedicated fans will take the word from the youtuber to be true. Brands can leverage this popularity of the Video content creators to spread awareness about their products.
The video from the previous YouTuber has done exactly what is expected of a UGC.
Create stories: Don’t underestimate the power of Instagram stories. According to Statista, Instagram reported 500 million daily active stories users in 2019 versus the 400 mils in 2018. Moreover, Instagram has added new features like polls, questionnaires, and more to make them interesting. Users can use these to promote brands on their stories.
Social media is booming, and it has given the power to make or break brands in the hands of consumers. Brands can use this opportunity as a way to leverage the reach of their consumers to gain more customers.