With so much online noise these days, it can feel near impossible to cut through. But what if we told you there was a cheap way to triple your clicks and build brand trust - trust being today’s strongest currency?
User-generated content (UGC) campaigns stand out as a refreshing and authentic take on business-to-consumer marketing.
Here’s why UGC is so powerful, and how you can use it to drive growth.
What is User-Generated Content?
While traditional advertising still has its place (especially for targeting cold audiences), UGC has become the go-to strategy for expanding organic reach and increasing conversions and engagement. Its success ties in with the powerful appeal of social proof.
From our old tribal days gathered around fires, humans have been addicted to stories for their ability to teach from lived experiences.
That’s why we rely so much on online reviews before making purchase decisions – we want to know what we can expect to manage our risk, and want to feel safe whenever our money is spent.
Fun fact: 84% of people trust online reviews as much as friends.
UGC marketing is where brands collate positive customer and brand experiences as they’re shared online. In doing so, they show greater brand authenticity and reliability because it highlights everyday people sharing unscripted, relatable content that connects with other similar, everyday people.
"But unpolished content won't fit my brand..."
We hear this objection a lot but authenticity is the key to consumer trust. And 90% of consumers trust user-generated content more than traditional ads.
Don't just take our word on it though – trust the data (it never lies).
Here’s a highlights reel of show-stopping comparisons from when we helped our clients shift from traditional assets to UGC.
What are the types of UGC?
UGC content tends to be split into two arms: visual content, and customer reviews or ratings.
Visual UGC looks like:
- Customers posting images or videos of products, services and experiences.
- Brand advocates who freely and willingly share their love and excitement for your brand.
- Employee generated content that provides an authentic and realistic insight into your business.
Customer Reviews & Ratings look like:
- Blog and social media comments.
- Repurposed product and service reviews on your site, Google, and other third-party platforms.
Due to basic trust, greater recall than other ‘staged’ forms, and general presence in our everyday lives, UGC has become one of the most influential types of content.
How to get UGC?
So, now that you’re wriggling with excitement and a strong sense of possibility, here are some simple and effective ways to get UGC working for your marketing strategy - whether you’re in the business of services or products, homeware, haircare or menswear.
1. Talk to DataSauce!
We have a whole range of tools and influencer connections that make it easy for us to get your user generated content on tap. If you don’t have the time, resources, or know-how, this is definitely your best option for putting together an effective campaign that delivers you top results.
2. Hashtag Contests and/or Trends
Create a unique hashtag and invite your fans and customers to play along. Fashion brand, Review started a campaign with its #ReviewGirl tag, encouraging customers to share snaps of themselves styling their outfits in everyday life.
3. Reshare Creator Content
We’ve all been to a café and snapped our gourmet eggs benny and vat of coffee. If employees or customers tag you in a post or story, jump on the opportunity to reshare their content on your account (noting it’s courteous to request their permission to do so).
4. Encourage employees and customers to leave reviews wherever possible
The lowest hanging fruit. You can try incentivising your existing database with rewards points or gift cards to boost your response rate. From there, pull these reviews and use them in your social media content, in your email campaigns, and across your website and sales pages. The possibilities are endless!
While it may be tempting to throw caution to the wind and jump in with no holds barred, your UGC campaigns will perform best when they are tied to strategic goals and objectives.
If you’d like help putting a powerful UGC strategy and content together so you'd start achieving similar results to our clients, get in touch.