Social media and user-generated content

By The Héméra Agency
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User-generated content is desired by any brand that understands what it is and why it is such a powerful marketing tool. UGC is how you make brand advocates. Consumers need to buy things but dislike being sold to which is why it is so effective. Have you ever run a UGC campaign? We have some info and tips to help you navigate UGC.


What is User Generated Content?

User-generated content or UGC is online content that customers have produced on their own using a brand’s products and services. A brand can request that users create content, or users may decide to create content on their own. UGC can come in many forms, usually, comments, social media posts, images, and videos, but also as blogs or reviews. The best brands use this kind of content to increase engagement with their customers. UGC is the best kind of review you can get!

Why do you need to take advantage of UGC?

There are a whole host of reasons to take advantage of user-generated content. 

  1. UGC is a great way to build credibility for your brand. It helps potential customers feel more comfortable about purchasing your products for the first time. Credibility means continued, sustainable revenue for your business. 

  2. UGC is almost like free independent publicity, which is why it is rated higher than most forms of paid promotions. Paid for posts are not viewed as objective or trustworthy, and UGC is the equivalent of a recommendation from a friend. UGC is a great indicator of a brand or product’s quality.

  3. While on the topic of instilling trust and building credibility, UGC can do miracles for your brand’s authenticity. It helps establish a brand tribe, consumers who are strong supporters of your brand.

  4. UGC requires less money, time, and resources than content generated by a brand. Instead of spending time creating new content, you can spend it engaging with your customers.

  5. UGC helps brands attract new followers and potential customers that are avoiding traditional advertising. Every user creates content that their followers and their followers’ followers will see. Brand exposure is huge.


Potential complications from User Generated Content

Like with anything related to social media, everything doesn’t always go according to plan. There are two particular possible complications and risks from UGC.

  • One of the main concerns brands have with UGC is that they have very little control over the content that is created. During a UGC campaign, it is important to use a social listening tool like Hootsuite to find and deal with inappropriate and negative content the minute it is published.  

  • Another key concern has to do with copywriting. Because of the nature of social media, there are plenty of potential copyright issues. Brands should have a copywriting checklist to ensure that permission is always obtained from the original creator of the content and that it is in writing. Always credit the original creator of the piece.


Steps to running a successful UGC campaign

  1. Set specific objectives for your campaign. What do you want to achieve with your campaign? Are you launching a new product, trying to increase interest in products not doing so well, or just trying to increase engagement with followers?

  2. Brainstorm your concept and design a hashtag strategy. If you need more guidance on how to develop a successful hashtag strategy click on this link (add link to social media kit) for our free downloadable social media kit.

  3. Create an incentive or collaborate with influencers to start getting submissions. Influencers can be a valuable asset in a UGC campaign, but you need to make sure that clear conditions are outlined upfront. Incentives can include different types of competitions. 

  4. Always ask for permission before reposting the user’s content. Although the content may have been created using a brand’s assets it is still essential to get written consent from the creator.

  5. Interact with the creator by liking and commenting on their post. Show your creators some love! Liking a user’s posts, commenting, and engaging with them will encourage new content.

  6. Re-use the user-generated content in new ad campaigns. UGC doesn’t have to be used only once when it is produced. Once permission has been obtained from the creator it can be used multiple times for other promotions.


Hopefully you have a better idea of how user-generated content can benefit your brand and how to go about creating UGC campaigns. If you could do with a little social media help, download our free social media kit. It contains plenty of tips and tricks to help you.


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