10 Ways to Boost Your Marketing Performance With UGC
While brands are continually adapting to an ever-evolving marketing paradigm, social media has established itself as a key channel in the bid to win over today’s digital consumers.
Businesses have realized that their customers and prospects are heavily influenced by other consumers through their social channels and are increasingly looking to incorporate user-generated content (UGC) into their social media campaigns, as well as overall marketing strategies, to better engage their audiences.
At Ignite, with our leading UGC martech platform Chute, we work with customers everyday around the world to advance their use of UGC, and from our conversations we developed our top 10 tips for marketers to drive optimal success with your next UGC campaign.
1. Set clear and specific goals
When you embark on your search for great user content, set clear goals for what you expect to achieve with the content. Are you looking to increase conversions for a specific product or service? Maybe you’re hoping to grow your brand awareness or influence your reputation?
Ultimately, knowing exactly what you want to achieve will help you craft a strategy that is focused on success from day one.
2. Plan for every touch point
Once you have set your goals it’s time to decide how to plan a campaign that ensures you reach them. Think about how UGC could be used to influence customers at each touchpoint whether that is social media, website galleries, adverts or even live displays.
Decide exactly what type of images and videos you want to use and then think about all of the different possibilities to use it to get the most from that content.
3. Start simple and then scale
When you plan your perfect campaign often times it includes an ambitious strategy. Yet sometimes looking at that big strategy is overwhelming because there is so much work to be done. The best way to make sure you follow through on your plan is to start simple. Become fluent in a first, simple UGC campaign or pilot before scaling it up once you’re more confident.
4. Engage your dream team
The quickest way to grind a campaign to a halt is not having key players engaged early in the campaign.. That doesn’t just include your social media and marketing teams, but anyone involved in each content display you plan on using. Who could this include?
- Web developer – Bring them into discussions about possibilities for web page galleries
- Ecommerce team – Excite them about using product tagging or use images on product pages
- Employees and HR – Use your best asset to capture images that show your brand culture
- Management – Engage them in the process to champion the campaign
Sometimes your brand hashtag is straightforward and easy for people to use, making their content extremely easy to explore. If your hashtag is a little outside the box, remember that you will have to work a little harder to get people using it.
Find content you like and leave a comment asking them to use your hashtag, promote it on your social channels or even find ways to spread the word face to face.
6. Make the effort to authentically engage
Once you’re starting to source the UGC that highlights the best of your brand, make sure you’re engaging with the creators in an authentic way. It’s easy to to forget that it’s not just about finding and using the content, it’s about building a relationship with your audience.
Reward people for creating content for your brand by commenting, liking and interacting with them. Today’s social media users are very attuned to how a brand communicates and can see when a real effort is being made to get to know them..
7. Push your online agenda offline
Again and again we see the biggest successes for UGC campaigns come from brands who have aligned all of their marketing channels to encourage UGC. As we mentioned earlier, there are ways to incentivise hashtag use in offline touchpoints with customers:
– Hotels do this in welcome notes, in public areas, and F&B
– Restaurants use menus, or napkins, or receipts
– Shops display it on changing room mirrors
These are just a few examples, but think about how your business can reach customers to inspire them to post.
8. Think outside the box
So if you’re a retailer or a hotel, it’s easy to see how UGC can be created to help your marketing campaign. How about an industry that isn’t immediately UGC friendly? Then you need to be creative about what you encourage people to do. For example, we’ve had a bank work with our platform to launch a UGC campaign that focused on humanising the brand in the eyes of the audience.
You don’t necessarily have to be selling something to make UGC work for you, and some of the most creative campaigns come from interesting use cases. And we love to hear from our customers about all the great ways they are using UGC!
9. Get more mileage from your content
UGC can help turn your social media channels into revenue generating powerhouses, but why stop there? Once your planning and promotional campaigns get the content rolling in, make sure you’re getting the most from the content. Use images for social, websites, adverts, blogs, emails, billboards, live displays, competitions and any other way that you think would be influential to a customer.
The key to making this work for you is to align these formats with your original goals. (Recall Tip 1 – Set clear specific goals.)That way, you’re staying focused on driving real business results, instead of just creating extra work (albeit lots of fun work) for the sake of it.
10. Only use the best content
We cannot stress enough the importance of only using the very best of what comes in. Quality trumps quantity, and if you’re not seeing enough content come in, go back to the drawing board with your plans on how to encourage customers to share their photos and videos.
It can really help to make sure your search parameters for UGC are set up to make the process of finding good quality, relevant content in Chute much easier.
As you can see, we’ve learned that the proper planning can make UGC amplify your brand. It’s all about knowing what you want to achieve and creating a campaign that never loses sight of the goal.
Ready to leverage User Generated Content? We’re here to help. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org