How to Leverage User-Generated Content For Your Brand

User-generated content (UGC) is any content that the consumer creates. A study found that 88% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know more than any other channel.

You can confirm this with a quick scroll through your social media feed. Would you trust a friend who actually tried the latest skincare sensation or yet another sponsored ad? The answer is obvious.

In this post, let’s go over some examples and benefits of user-generated content, and how it can take your marketing campaigns to the next level. You’ll also learn how to create and schedule UGC campaigns and contests effectively.

Why Do Brands Need User-Generated Content?

Whenever a person shares an image, video, or review about a brand they’ve tried, it counts as user-generated content. A recent study found that user-generated content is 31% more memorable than branded ads. This is because people trust recommendations from their peers more than traditional forms of marketing.

Word-of-mouth marketing is when people promote a brand indirectly with their feedback or thoughts. This creates authentic engagement that is much more valuable than mainstream marketing or ads. In this way, your customers become your brand ambassadors.

A brand that regularly features user-generated content builds a lot of goodwill, trust, and credibility over time. It’s also a great way to integrate your product or service into real-life use cases! So that it’s easy for anyone engaging with your brand to see your product in action. 

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Types Of User-Generated Content

There are many different types of user-generated content, based on the audience your brand has. These can be – 

  • Customers: Any content that your customers may create when they try out your product or service- an image, an unboxing video, a review – all of this counts as consumer-generated content. While posting, you can add a simple CTA in your bio that tells people to tag your company hashtag when they post. It’s as simple as “Tag #CompanyName to get featured!”
    • Employees: Your employees are your brand’s spokespeople. When they post content about working at your brand or a fun in-store event, that’s user-generated content as well. You can feature these posts as a peek into what your company culture’s like.
    • Partners and collaborators: It’s common for brands to create limited-edition collaborations, events, or partnerships with other brands or influencers with the same values. Create excitement around your product or service by sharing behind-the-scenes snapshots from your collaborators. 

    So What’s In It For You?

    Now that we’ve examined some of the advantages of user-generated content, it’s time to understand why you need to integrate it into your marketing strategy – and fast!

    1. User-generated content encourages brand advocacy

    It can turn passionate fans and customers into promoters of your brand. For instance, Vans regularly features real people and creative influencers on their Instagram profiles. Their brand image is about more than just shoes – it showcases an aspirational lifestyle based on the Vans aesthetic. By doing this, they motivate more people to create their own content using the brand’s hashtag using hashtag generator in hopes of being featured. Vans is one of the only brands that’s also created a separate Instagram profile dedicated to the skateboarding lifestyle it promotes. This profile features real skateboarders.

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    2. Cost-effective content creation

    The content that users create is real and unfiltered – different from what your marketing team creates. It’s versatile enough to use (with consent) across digital channels, your website, and your ads. A regular stream of user-generated content helps cut down large production budgets as well. You can also use Simplified’s inbuilt social media scheduler to plan your posts across multiple social media platforms. 

      3. User-generated content boosts engagement

      One of the advantages of user-generated content is how it boosts your reach and engagement. The more your users engage with your social media profiles, the more visibility you get. Getting featured on a brand’s profile is pretty exciting for most users. Chances are that they’ll share it too, leading to more users aspiring to be featured as well. Brands can also get featured on a Social Wall.

      Pro Tip: track your brand’s mentions and reach with Simplified’s Social Media Analytics tool.

        4. Creates multiple use cases

        Millennials aren’t too convinced when it comes to traditional ads. But when they see real people use and experience what you offer, they’re more likely to turn into paying customers. It’s because content featuring real people is unbiased, authentic, and easier to relate to. User-generated content simplifies purchasing decisions. It’s easier to buy something when you see someone like you demonstrate how it works or how it benefits them.

        Bonus: The Complete Guide to Using Facebook Stories for Your Business

        How to use UGC in your marketing campaigns?

        • Run a contest: Offer an incentive for users to post about your brand and increase your share of voice on social media. This can be through an Instagram contest or a TikTok challenge that encourages people to get creative. You’ll also get a massive bank of content for you to repurpose later on your social media, apart from the winning entries.
        • Create a branded hashtag: Urban Outfitters Home mentions #UOHome as their branded hashtag in their Instagram bio. Customers can easily create content with this hashtag, and the brand features it regularly on their feeds. Using Instagram product tags on these posts directly helps drive revenue as well!
        • Build influencer partnerships: 60% of marketers say that influencer-generated content performs much better than branded posts. Partner with influencers on campaigns to share UGC on your brand and host giveaways or product collaborations with them to maximize your ROI from influencer marketing.
        • Use UGC to create video content: People consume video content now more than ever. Here’s an easy way to create engaging video content – create a compilation video of the best of the UGC about your brand. Simplified makes it super easy to create, edit and publish videos in minutes with its video editor tool.

        Wrapping Up [ + Free Content Planner & Scheduler ]

        The possibilities with user-generated content are endless. Leverage this marketing trend to establish your brand, build trust and transparency and supercharge your content marketing capabilities in a cost-effective way. To start with, use a designated day of the week to feature UGC and make the most of scheduling tools

        With Simplified, you can manage all your social media accounts from one simple platform. Streamline your social media marketing efforts and create marketing content effortlessly with in-built scheduling and analytics tools, premium social media templates, brand kits, stock media libraries, and more! Get all this for Free only with Simplified.

        Create User Generated Content For Your Brand With Simplified!

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        Ajay Yadav
        Ajay Yadav is an AI enthusiast and author of various topics on AI. He writes about the latest developments in AI and its impact on society, business, and technology.

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