5 Ways to Build an Effective Marketing Campaign with User Generated Content
User-Generated Content (UGC) includes any type of material posted by consumers. This content can vary from photos and videos to blog posts, depending on the product’s nature. How does it work? Actual users create brand content and share personal experiences or give detailed reviews. UGC is becoming increasingly popular since it adds a personalized touch, which resonates with the audience.
Due to growing digital platforms, UGC has become an integral part of the current marketing campaigns. As advertising becomes more consumer-centric, the power of success lies in real-life user content. To validate the authenticity of UGC, it was found out that 92% of people would trust a recommendation from a person rather than from branded content. This shows that consumers have less faith in the sales tactics used by brands. Instead, they prefer real-world customer stories that provide a direct connection.
Therefore, to build customer trust, you should design a marketing strategy that speaks to them. And what better way to do so than to integrate UGC into your advertising campaign. Luckily, there is a lot of user-generated content available on the internet. However, without a robust marketing plan, there is not much you can do even with the best user content.
For a successful UGC marketing campaign, you need to devise a well-defined plan of action. Having a UGC strategy will enable you to:
- Manage social media channels
- Analyze the performance of UGC at different stages
- Plan ahead in case of any discrepancies
- Lower chances of failure
How to Integrate User-Generated Content With Your Marketing Campaign
The successful implementation of a user-generated campaign can increase social media engagement for your brand. This way, you will reach a wider audience and have a greater chance of meeting your sales targets. However, before you get started with your campaign, you need to decide your goals. Do you want to create hype for a new product launch or generate feedback on a service? The agenda behind your marketing plan will determine the time and resources needed for it.
Once you have laid down the basics of your strategy, it’s time to go ahead and delve deeper into user-generated content techniques. Here are five important ways the top content marketing companies help you focus your marketing campaign based on user-generated content:
1. Pick the Right Social Media Channel
User-generated content is highly effective if posted on the right channels. The key to impactful content is to discover where your audience lives. Numerous online platforms can showcase your brand, but not every media channel will yield favorable results. While it’s great to have a social media presence on various channels, for UGC, start by building a campaign on a single site.
To start, determine which social media platform is most suited to your business or brand image. As a company that prioritizes graphics and pictures, Instagram or Snapchat may be the best bet. If you have a tech-savvy team, you can ask them to generate specific hashtags for your brand and collect user generated content under one space. Such platforms work great for companies that want to incorporate visuals or influencer marketing.
Next, we have Facebook. Being a broad community, Facebook has a challenging algorithm to expand organic reach. However, that should not deter you. If you have a large following on Facebook, go ahead and run your campaign there. The ideal Facebook user-generated content would include videos and interactive content. Why? Because Facebook audiences love to share content, make comments and repost.
Twitter and Linkedin require highly focused content that represents the brand image. If you work with strong visuals and can get the message across in a few words, Twitter is the way to go. Otherwise, use LinkedIn for serious messaging that is targeted at professionals.
2. Analyze Your Audience
Before you start planning your marketing campaign, an essential step is to understand your audience. Identify their interests and the type of content they post. In-depth consumer insights will enable you to design an effective social media strategy to generate valuable user content.
After you’ve shortlisted the ideal social media platforms appropriate for your business, study the audience that follows your page. A brief look at the users’ profiles reveals the type of content you can expect and the content that will work for you. An important thing here is to consider is the demographics of your audience. This will help you determine how to reach out to different groups in a way that appeals to them the most.
A smart move to lead user-generated content is to give your audience a sense of direction. Doing so is important because consumers should know what a certain brand stands for. Clear cut rules and regulations will make it more likely for you to receive usable content. Otherwise, you can have hundreds of irrelevant submissions. Popular options to gather user-generated content include social media contests and hashtag mentions.
Once you discover what works best for your audience, stick to it. People don't want abrupt changes that are hard to keep track of. That being said, you can have new campaigns lined up to keep it interesting so that your users have something to look forward to.
3. Determine User Generated Content Targets
To get the maximum rate of return from your UGC marketing campaign, it is good practice to set some goals and targets. Doing so helps formulate a better strategy and put forward the right type of content. Depending on the growth stage of your brand, you can decide between different milestones you aim to achieve with your UGC campaign:
Building brand awareness: As a company that has recently ventured into social media, building brand awareness will help you hit your viewer target. To run a successful UGC campaign to spread brand awareness, delve into influencer marketing. It is a great way to introduce a new company or a product to the audience and redirect leads back to your page. All content that explains what your brand is about can be attributed to your UGC marketing campaign.
Driving purchase decisions: It often happens that you have many followers, but that doesn't necessarily convert into sales revenue. In this scenario, a user-centered marketing approach would enable you to attract the attention of existing followers and potentially turn them into customers. To kickstart the campaign, you can ask your users to post product reviews or send out Public Relations (PR) packages to relevant bloggers.
Establishing brand credibility: New businesses in the market have to put in a lot of effort to gain trust and loyalty from customers. However, if you play it smart, you can use user-generated content to your advantage. Design a campaign to have users come forward to share their experiences. Having organic social media posts speaks volumes about the quality of your customer service and helps build a positive brand image.
4. Develop a Roadmap
For a marketing campaign to be successful, it is important to establish deadlines. A due date should be set for every task related to logistics and management. For instance, if you have set digital marketing targets for the quarter, then you can work back and implement deadlines for the user-generated content campaign.
After you have finalized the theme for the UGC campaign, think about the ideal number of submissions you would like to have. How should the users submit their posts? Try to be as clear as possible about the rules and regulations to get maximum useful content. Moreover, discuss the copyright policy beforehand so as to avoid any problems at a later stage.
After the submissions come to the tricky partã¼deciding on what to share on your official page. For an expert opinion, put together a creative team that can help you select relevant content for your brand. During this process, be sure to advertise through the different stages. Let your followers know what's going on. Lastly, if you have a giveaway or prize policy, make sure you deliver on time. A well-managed marketing strategy is a key to effective UGC.
5. Evaluate the Campaign Results
After all the time and effort invested in the UGC marketing campaign, the last step is to monitor the performance and evaluate the results. As soon as user posts start piling in, keep a check on the quality of the content received. If the content is not something you expected, look into how you can make instructions clear to the audience. Filter out unwanted content and spam posts to keep the campaign running smoothly.
The best way to evaluate marketing content performance is to invest in social media analytics tools. Such tools can help you track multiple goals at a single platform and seek improvements where needed. Accurate UGC analytics enable you to set up benchmarks and measure performance in a streamlined manner. Once you figure out how well your campaign is doing, you can tweak it to amp up the future performance.
Takeaways From the UGC Marketing Campaign
A user-generated content marketing strategy is an excellent way to gather information about consumer behavior. Mainly because user posts could contain potential ideas for a new social media marketing strategy. This can be deciphered by paying attention to how people talk about your brand. For instance, some users may come up with new ways to use your product that you may not have thought about.
Similarly, effective UGC can point towards product improvements. Look closely at the tone people use to talk about your products. Are they happy, or do they expect something more? To explore feedback, you can even get in touch with users for detailed reviews. While user-generated content is a powerful tool for a marketing campaign, it is much more than just that.
UGC is a learning tool that can help reshape the brand image according to the user's preference. With the right tools and strategy, you can utilize valuable user content for the company’s meaningful marketing experience.