Using User-Generated Content in Social Media: Benefits and Best Practices | Guide to Authentic and Trustworthy Campaigns

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There was a time when Apple phones had a  mediocre camera. But when they realized that users were unsatisfied, they created a campaign called “Shot on iPhone” to redeem its image. The campaign had users taking images using their iPhones in low-light conditions and posting them on social media.

 It captured amazing visuals that helped change the poor camera narrative. This is an example of how brands can use user-generated content in social media. This article will guide you on how you can also use user-generated content in social media.

What is User-Generated Content?

User-generated content(UGC) is original content created freely by consumers for a particular brand to be posted on social media. The content can be in the form of videos, images, reviews, or stories.  Brands can then use the content in their campaigns after obtaining the creator’s permission.

It’s important to note that branded content is different from user-generated content. A sponsorship indicates that a brand pays for content creation, which should be indicated in a post. You may have noticed such content on Instagram or Facebook as it’s usually labeled in words like paid partnership”.

Benefits of User-generated Content

The main reason why people trust UGC is because it’s authentic. Here are the other benefits of UGC:

Trusted and Authentic

Both marketers and customers agree that customers trust fellow customers more than brands. A 2021 study showed that 93% of marketers believe that users trust UGC more than content produced by brands. Another study showed that 79% of respondents agreed that UGC affected their buying decisions. Therefore, using  UGC in your campaigns can help you gain the trust of your audience.

Positive Review

When a customer posts content on your brand, they will consider it a review. But when you post content about your brand, it’s called advertisement. Therefore, User-generated content is based on the belief that people trust others to provide a balanced review of a product. 

More Traffic And Conversion

Traffic is an essential metric for marketers as it also helps with conversion. When customers create content for your brand, their friends will see it, giving you more exposure. This will result in more traffic and a higher conversion rate.

Increase Brand Loyalty

UGC helps customers feel that they are part of a brand growth journey. This can breed brand loyalty.

How to Use User-Generated Content

Here are essential tips to remember when using user-generated content:

Always Seek for Permission

Before republishing someone else content, always ask for permission. If you do not do so, you can easily kill the goodwill and annoy your brand ambassadors. When you ask for permission, you show the creator that you appreciate their creativity and inspire them to share your content.

Give Credit to the Creator

When using user-generated content, always give credit to the creator. You can tag them in your posts and clearly state their contribution in the video, audio, or both.  In fact, tagging will also increase your brand’s exposure, especially on Instagram, where image or video tagging appears on both profiles. Many will share your posts when you attribute the work to them, giving your brand more exposure.

Use Unique Hashtags

A great way of promoting your brand on social media is by using a unique hashtag. This will help you and other people find posts that customers created under your hashtag. Ultimately, it will provide your brand with more exposure.

Run a Contest

One of the best ways of getting more people to participate in your campaign is by running contests. This will provide more exposure to your brand while rewarding your customers for their creativity. Ensure that the rules of the content are well stipulated. 

Be Keen on the User’s Conversation

It’s essential to listen to what customers are saying about your brand. You can use the best social media management tools to understand customer’s sentiments about your brand.

Engage Your Employees

Your employees are among your best brand ambassadors. You can leverage this relationship to have them as your business spokespeople. For instance, you can have a social media account where employees can create behind-the-scenes videos of the production process.

Create a Compelling Challenge

Another great way that you can have a more exciting UGC is by creating a challenge. If the campaigns are interesting enough, there are chances of your campaigns going viral, leading to more brand growth.  For instance, if you sell gym equipment, you can have a challenge where customers can participate for several days and share their progress.

Wrapping Up

User-generated content can achieve more in a day than what you can accomplish in a year. This is because you will have multiple social media users creating content on behalf of your brand. By using the tips in this article, you can have UGC that will help increase engagement and, ultimately, growth levels of your brand.

Benjamin is a writer with over ten years of experience in the content writing field. He holds a Bachelor's degree in  Journalism from Strathmore University. He writes on various niches such as product reviews, self-improvement, and making mone online. You can find him curled on his couch with a self-improvement book when he is not blogging.