Creating a content calendar from scratch every month can be quite a challenging task. Especially if you don't have that many images and videos that you can use on your social media platforms. Besides, the very process of creating visual content can be rather expensive. It requires truly talented professionals who will be able to capture the right moments and the right emotions you'd like to transfer on your social media channels.
Picture 1. Consumer-generated marketing should be an important part of every marketing strategy
This is where user-generated content, i.e. consumer-generated marketing comes into the picture. And besides the flashy images and videos you can get, there’s another great reason.
According to research, a whopping 79% of consumers say that UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions.
What is Consumer Generated Marketing?
Though it may sound incredibly sophisticated and complicated, consumer-generated marketing is nothing more than a strategy revolving around the content created by your followers and/or consumers.
Types of consumer-generated content you can use:
Images/videos made and published by your consumers
Competitions organized by you
Comments posted on social media and forums
The success that these posts usually have on your social media can be justified by a very common reason proven by many studies. People tend to believe more in an actual person’s experience than in a business bragging about how cool their product or service is. Makes sense, right?
Benefits of Consumer-Generated Marketing
Apart from saving you and your content writer time and increasing your conversion rate as mentioned before, there are many other benefits of using user-generated content in your marketing strategy.
Checking out what your customers are saying about you can give you a lot of info about what you’re doing right, and most importantly what you could do better. You can assess the entire customer experience you’re providing and decide whether you like it or not. It allows you to rethink if the impression you're making is what you were aiming for.
With competition emerging every day, it’s important to stay in the spotlight. And this is where UGC does the trick. If people are talking about you on online platforms and posting images and videos tagging you in their posts, you will surely remain trendy and relevant.
Picture 2. UGC stats
As mentioned, genuine reviews from real people have a lot bigger impact on your brand image than what you’re saying about yourself on your website. Take it as online word-of-mouth marketing – and there’s no better marketing than getting recommended by somebody.
Examples of Inspirational UGC Campaigns
Many big brands have recognized the power of UGC – and they’re using it to the fullest. Here are 2 very simple campaigns that did wonders for the companies’ marketing (and revenues).
Coca-Cola “Share a Coke” Campaign
Remember Coca-Cola bottles with people’s names on their labels? Launched in 2011 in Australia, the campaign’s objective was to increase the company’s exposure on Twitter. The task was really simple – they gave out Coke bottles with customers’ names and they asked them to share the photos of these bottles on Twitter. Soon the campaign spread to other countries and other social media platforms and it resulted in a 2% increase in US sales.
Dorritos “Crash the Super Bowl” Campaign
If you’re dreaming that one day your idea will be shown on a big screen at the most popular sports events in the States – this one’s for you. Dorritos launched their “Crash the Super Bowl” campaign in 2006. And it is basically a contest – consumers have to submit their craziest commercial ideas for a chance to get featured during the Super Bowl commercial break. Thousands of people participate every year, creating a huge buzz before and after the event.
Getting UGC and being able to use consumer-generated marketing is a two-way street. You can’t sit around and expect amazing content coming your way for nothing. It’s important to invest your time into putting out ideas that your followers will relate to and find interesting, whether it’s your own content or organizing giveaways, public calls or setting trends and challenges. You are the main creator of your brand image, and if your voice is loud and creative enough, your followers and customers will be a great add-on to the whole picture.