Your One-Stop Guide to User-Generated Content
by Game Marketing Genie, on 16-Jun-2021 11:07:17
Content is one of the most important building blocks of your marketing strategy. Creating content should be one of the most important priorities for any business, but not all of it needs to be created by you.
User-generated content (UGC) is one of the most sought after content types. More than 86 percent of businesses incorporate UGC in their content marketing strategies, and claim that this approach helped them increase user engagement and conversions.
What is user-generated content?
User-generated content is any type of content that consumers create that is used by brands for marketing purposes. Reviews, testimonials, video content, images, blog posts and case studies are all different types of UGC that brands can use on their websites, social accounts, and other marketing channels to engage their audiences.
This content strategy is a two way approach as it helps customers share content with their own audiences, while simultaneously boosting brand credibility. In fact, 92 percent of customers trust user-generated content compared to conventional ads. So, let’s take a look at some successful UGC campaigns.
Calvin Klein's #MyCalvins campaign in 2014 was a huge success. The American fashion house released a video featuring Justin Bieber for the campaign that received 1.6 million in engagement within the first 48 hours of its release, which then skyrocketed to 9.8 million views during the life of the campaign.
The campaign encouraged various celebrities to fill out the phrase “I ______ in #mycalvins” which received various answers including''flaunt”, ”dream”, and more. This move encouraged consumers to join the conversation by posting their own pictures and answers. The best pictures from their consumers were then featured on the brand’s microsite.
Figure 1: #MyCalvins UGC Campaign. Source: Calvin Klein
Another brand that constantly generates incredible content from its users is GoPro. This camera brand has numerous loyal customers that share their experiences online. By hosting themed contests from time to time, GoPro attracts millions of entries by offering rewards to their contestants.
The “Million Dollar Challenge” is one of GoPro’s UGC contests that captured attention from many around the world. Content creators that submitted the best entries received - you guessed it - one million dollars.
Figure 2: Million Dollar Challenge. Source: GoPro
Why does UGC work so well?
User-generated content often created with little to no input from brands. Unlike other content marketing approaches that require businesses to invest in time, money, and resources, creating UGC is way more cost-effective as you just let your audience do its own thing!
All that you need to do is come up with excellent ideas that create interest in your audience and are highly engaging. Once you nail your UGC concept, your audience will pick up the pace and you can take it from there.
79 percent of consumers find that UGC has a major impact on their purchase decisions. This is because they find it more authentic than purely sales-driven marketing.
Additionally, when compared to other types of ad forms, UGC advertisements receive four times more clicks. As every business wants to increase its conversion rates, you don’t want to ignore this approach. This is why working with a content marketing specialist can help you create the best UGC strategy to scale up your business.
Shows your customers that you value them
Consumers are inundated with ads and loads of information from brands every day. However, UGC can help you differentiate yourself from your competition in the most genuine way possible.
60 percent of consumers and 75 percent of marketers find the UGC marketing approach more authentic compared to other types of content. After all, everyone likes to be recognized for the efforts they put in, and your customers are no different. When you feature content created by your consumers on your platforms, it shows customers that you value their experience, love their social posts about your products, and care about their opinions.
Working a campaign around “customer of the week or month” is one great way to kickstart your UGC campaign. Displaying that your customers are important to you is one of the key triggers that encourages brand loyalty, customer retention, and revenue generation.
User-generated content is heavily driven by your consumers' thoughts and personal experiences. 48 percent of marketers claim that UGC helps them humanize their marketing efforts. This means that UGC not only grabs the attention of other prospects but also gives you unique content that is exclusive to your brand.
Additionally, it showcases massive brand advocacy as your consumers become your brand representatives, giving you organic and positive word of mouth marketing to foster brand awareness and build your brand credibility as well.
Shows that people actually enjoy your products/services
Unlike other forms of marketing, UGC is an offbeat approach that easily captures attention. Among the various types of content your users may produce, videos are the most effective.
UGC videos are viewed ten times more than regular brand videos on YouTube. Additionally, UGC content has more potential for getting shared on social media platforms. It shows that your target audience likes your brand and purchases your products.
Content created by consumers gives you insights into your audience’s preferences better, shows prospective customers that your products are genuine, and boosts your image in a way other approaches can’t.
Create a community
With users being instrumental in creating content for the brands they love, UGC plays a key role in creating an online community exclusively for your brand.
Sharing pictures, videos, blog posts, testimonials, comments, and more! Content created by your consumers is a great way to spark conversations about your brand, and build a robust online community.
Fostering a community encourages your audience to develop and share more content, creates an atmosphere where users can share ideas, collaborate with each other, find new people to follow, improves your SEO, gives personality to your brand, gain deeper insights into your target audience, and builds a robust brand reputation.
All you have to do is concentrate on catering to your existing customers better and engage with them innovatively. This helps you increase brand advocacy, build trust, and improve customer loyalty.
How to get your audience to create UGC
Create incredible experiences that are beautiful and worth sharing
While creating high quality content is one aspect, making it engaging and creating the spark for your audience to share your content is another. Asking your consumers to share their experiences as they use your product is an excellent way to create shareable content.
The Starbucks “White Cup” initiative is one such challenge that encouraged customers to feature their favorite doodle designs on their coffee cups and post it on social media with #WhiteCupContest. This UGC campaign was a massive success as it received 4000 entries within 3 weeks and boosted Starbucks’ social media organic reach dramatically.
Figure 3: Starbucks “White Cup” contest. Source: Consumer Value Creation
The “Share A Coke” campaign by Coca Cola initiated in Australia in 2011 is another interesting and smart UGC idea. The brand printed 150 famous names on their bottles and asked its customers to share pictures online. Customers were quick enough to respond to this campaign and posted bottles that featured their names on Coke bottles online. This campaign was then replicated in 80 different countries and received a similar response.
Figure 4: Share A Coke campaign. Source: Coca-Cola
Ask them to share their experience
With social media taking over the world, people are eager to share their experiences, and favorite brands. To understand what type of content your customers can produce for your brand, it is important to study their preferences, and interests.
Knowing what your target market is passionate about, and the type of content they share most will help you design the perfect UGC campaign strategy.
Additionally, asking your target audience to share their experiences makes them feel valued, and shows that you are interested in receiving ideas from them. This helps you understand human dynamics better, build your brand message around their concerns, and make your message relevant to them.
Monitoring various hashtags and keywords on social media platforms will help you gain insights into the content that your audience shares the most. Facebook Insights is also an amazing tool that can help you get audience information easily.
Working with a content marketing manager that understands the gaming industry, your video game, and your target market is a great way to nail this inbound content marketing approach (UGC), and win over your competitors.
An excellent way to encourage your target market to create and share content on behalf of your business is to incentivize them. Hosting competitions is a great video game marketing strategy that creates the buzz that you desire among your audience and inspires them to create content for you.
Brands that have been successful in promoting their business through UGC offer something of high value to their customers. Strategize product rewards or in-game giveaways that attract your customers.
While contests like tagging a friend or photo are most used by different brands to gain exposure, you need to come up with innovative ways to get players engaged with your products and services. Doing this not only instills confidence in your customers and prospects but also strengthens customer relationships in the long run.
TikTok is one of the leading short form video platforms in the world today and an incredible place to generate UGC. Read our blog, Everything You Need To Know About User-Generated Content on TikTok, to leverage this platform to grow your audience.
User-generated content needs to be one of the fundamental pillars of your content strategy. However, UGC content strategy is easier said than done. Working with a content marketing agency will help you create compelling and engaging content ideas for your UGC campaign.
Game Marketing Genie has a team of seasoned professionals that can assist you in creating UGC campaigns that can help your brand reach your marketing goals effectively. To know more about how we can help you, talk to our team today!