What is User Generated Content (UGC) & How Can Businesses Get Involved

User Generated Content

User-generated content (UGC), also known as the stuff regular people create, is like a breath of fresh air in the marketing world. It's not your typical content that comes straight from the company, but rather the real deal from consumers themselves. We're talking product reviews, social media posts, video testimonials, blog articles, and even podcasts. UGC gives consumers a chance to speak up, share their experiences, and make their voices heard.

In this digital age, people rely heavily on the opinions and experiences of others before making a purchase. That's where UGC comes in. It's a platform for consumers to express their thoughts, whether they're praising a brand or calling them out. And because it comes straight from the people who have actually used the product or interacted with the brand, it's seen as more genuine and trustworthy.

Product reviews are a prime example of UGC. They're the go-to resource for potential customers who want unbiased opinions and insights before opening their wallets. You can find these reviews on all sorts of websites, social media platforms, and even dedicated review sites. It's like a treasure trove of information for anyone looking to make an informed decision.

But wait, there's more! Social media platforms have become a playground for UGC. Consumers can share their experiences, thoughts, and even get creative with posts, photos, videos, and memes. Brands can encourage users to use specific hashtags or tags to track and engage with this content, making it a real community affair.

And let's not forget about video testimonials. These bad boys add a personal touch to a brand's marketing efforts. Imagine real people, just like you and me, talking about their positive experiences with a product or service. These videos can be shared on the brand's website, social media channels, or even used in advertising campaigns. It's like getting a virtual high-five from someone who really knows what they're talking about.

Blog articles and podcasts have also become platforms for consumers to share their experiences and opinions. Bloggers and podcasters can dive deep into reviews, tutorials, or discussions about a specific product or brand. It's like having a conversation with a friend who knows all the ins and outs of what you're interested in.

So, you see, user-generated content is a big deal. It gives consumers a voice, allows them to share their experiences, and helps others make informed decisions. Brands that embrace and promote UGC build trust, engage with their audience, and ultimately drive sales. It's a win-win for everyone involved.

Cool, you say. So how do we get involved?

1. Create a Hashtag: Encourage users to share their experiences with your brand by creating a unique hashtag that they can use when posting on social media. This not only helps to organize and track user-generated content but also creates a sense of community among your customers. When users see others using the hashtag, they feel connected to a larger group of people who share similar experiences and interests. It also makes it easier for your brand to discover and engage with UGC, as all the content associated with the hashtag is in one place. Additionally, you can consider offering incentives or rewards for using the hashtag, such as featuring the best posts on your website or giving away exclusive discounts or merchandise to those who participate.

2. Run Contests: Run contests that encourage users to create content related to your brand. This can be anything from writing a review to creating a short video. Contests are a fun and interactive way to engage with your audience and encourage them to become brand advocates. You can ask users to share their favorite product usage tips, create a funny meme related to your brand, or even showcase their artistic skills by designing a logo or artwork. By offering exciting prizes or exclusive experiences as rewards, you can motivate users to participate and generate high-quality UGC. Make sure to promote the contest through various channels, such as social media, email newsletters, and your website, to maximize participation and reach.

3. Feature UGC on Your Website: Display user-generated content on your website, such as product reviews or testimonials. This can help to build trust and credibility with potential customers. When visitors see positive reviews and testimonials from real people, they are more likely to perceive your brand as trustworthy and reliable. Consider creating a dedicated section on your website to showcase UGC, where visitors can easily browse through authentic experiences and opinions. You can also use UGC to enhance your product pages, by including customer photos or videos demonstrating the use and benefits of your products. This not only adds a personal touch but also provides social proof, which can influence purchasing decisions.

4. Respond to UGC: When users create content about your brand, make sure to respond to their posts and show your appreciation for their support. This can encourage other users to create content as well. Engaging with UGC demonstrates that you value your customers and their opinions. Take the time to like, comment, or share UGC that aligns with your brand values and resonates with your audience. By acknowledging and responding to UGC, you foster a sense of community and encourage others to share their experiences. This can also lead to valuable conversations and feedback, providing insights into what your customers love about your brand and areas for improvement.

5. Collaborate with Influencers: Partner with influencers and encourage them to create content related to your brand. This can help to expand your reach and tap into new audiences. Influencers have established credibility and a loyal following, making their endorsement of your brand highly influential. Collaborating with influencers allows you to leverage their creativity and influence to create authentic and engaging UGC. Whether it's through sponsored posts, product reviews, or takeover campaigns, influencers can help amplify your brand message and generate buzz around your products or services. When working with influencers, make sure to choose those whose values align with your brand and whose audience aligns with your target market. This ensures that the UGC generated by influencers resonates with your intended audience and drives meaningful engagement.

Make you have permission from these content creators to reuse their content. If they've posted on Social Media and allow reposting (or stitching) then you'll be able to download their video and reuse it. We've run many successful campaigns for our clients by taking the best of their UGC and creating compilations or reaction videos for them. 

If you're interested in maximizing your UGC, get in touch! We'd love to collaborate. 

Erin Hayes

Erin's a producer, writer and content lover. She's worked with MediaBoss since 2008. In 2010, she quit her marketing and freelance writing jobs and came on to lead MediaBoss full-time.


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