Whether you are a product-based or service-based company, you understand the value of promoting your business online, especially on social media. Creating content, whether it’s images or videos, can be time-consuming and costly for brands. While influencer marketing has been popular for the last several years and helps generate content, many companies are not finding the campaigns beneficial.
Instead, more and more brands are turning to user-generated content (UGC). If you’ve heard about UGC content and are interested in learning more about how your company can benefit, read on for everything you need to know.
What is User-Generated Content?
UGC content is original pieces of content, such as images or videos, that are specifically created for a brand. This type of content is created by individuals who are loyal to brands, such as customers or employees. Whether they post reviews, testimonials, or unboxing videos, they are generating valuable content that has a more relatable quality to it.
Brands can see this type of content as people post it and can ask permission from the original poster to share it with their audience. However, that’s not the only way to gather UGC content. Similar to how brands launch influencer campaigns, they can do a UGC campaign where they reach out to interested people and hire them to create content. These individuals don’t need to post on their own social media pages, as is the case with influencers, instead, they prepare the content to share with the brand for the brand to post at their disposal.
The Benefits of UGC
The age of overly curated content that is typically created by influencers or through brand photoshoots is not having the same effect on customers as it once was. Consumers are looking for a real connection with brands that more accurately reflect the world they live in. The style of UGC content feels more authentic so customers have an easier time relating to the brand and builds a trust factor.
UGC campaigns are much more cost-effective compared to influencer campaigns or brand photoshoots. Your brand can garner content organically from current customers posting content online, which can be low or zero cost, or your brand can launch a campaign where the cost per UGC creator is much less compared to an influencer.
Work with an Agency or Marketplace
If you are interested in hiring UGC content creators, how can you go about it? Similar to influencer campaigns, there are agencies or marketplaces where you can find quality content creators to collaborate with. These companies vet creators so you can find individuals who have a history of creating high-quality content for brands so you know that you’re finding exceptional people to work with. In most cases, you would have to pay a fee or service charge to utilize their services, which is true for influencer agencies and marketplaces as well.
Reach out to Existing Customers Organically
For newer brands with a limited budget, you can choose to reach out to interested content creators organically to begin a partnership. This does not require any upfront cost, except for the cost of having a member of your team do the legwork. This task can be time-intensive, especially in the beginning, but it can give your company an idea of who you want to work with.
The first thing you want to do is find any existing customers posting about your product. You can find this in any tags or hashtags or by searching your company name. You will discover anyone mentioning your brand and can look at their content to determine if they might be a good fit. For newer brands or those looking to branch out, you can search for individuals posting content related to your industry.
For example, if you are a skincare brand, you can find creators who post frequently about skincare. You know they have a love for those types of products and can work with them to create content for your skincare brand.
When performing this task, you want to pay more attention to the style of content they are producing and look less at the numbers (followers, likes, comments, etc). At the end of the day, you want to work with someone who can create quality content you can share with your own audience.
User-generated content is becoming a huge part of social media marketing and if you want to get involved, there is no time like the present. With these tips, you are on your way to getting started and enjoying the wonderful benefits.
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