29 Jul 2015
by Kelsey Taber

How To Fuel Brand Advocates With User Generated Content

Social Platforms have a growing impact on how people buy. Consumers are turning to their peers more frequently to gain insights on anything from style to vacation spots to where they’ll go for dinner. Consumers love to get inspired by their peers and also have a higher probability to show off what makes them unique on social media. With a society that is fueled by social proof comes a growing number of brand advocates.

User Generated Content

Brand advocates are the cheerleaders of a brand that dictate the conversation and habits of that brand’s customers without incentive. Studies show that Brand Advocates have unusual habits compared to your general consumer. They are 2.5x more likely to use social media to expand their social circles, and 2x more likely to share their opinions about brands online. They are viewed by their peers and perceive themselves as thought leaders and are 3x more likely to share product information online to relax. Clearly, this group of social consumers is not shy when it comes to talking about what they use, do, and love.

How can brands use user generated content to fuel brand advocates?

It’s all about creating and maintaining a positive conversation. First brands should listen to what’s being said about them by collecting feedback from their customers using testimonials, monitoring reviews, and just simply searching through social sites to gain some insight. Then once they know what makes their customers tick they should capitalize on that. Creating a user generated content campaign allows brands to dictate the conversation surrounding their brand, and gives brand advocates something to talk about.

User generated content:

What is it?

User generated content campaigns can be extremely effective marketing tactics. What better way to appeal to your target audience than to use your target audience in your campaign. A UGC marketing campaign is the idea of using your content collected from your customers to promote or advertise your brand. This can be achieved through a contest, sweepstakes, or by simply asking for feedback. However your brand decides to use a UGC campaign, the golden rule is that it needs to have a specific focus. This focussed end goal will help you get content from your customers that you can use again and again to help shine a positive and personable light on your brand.

Who uses it?

User generated content has gained traction in the last couple of years. There’s something about relatable video footage, or photos that gets consumers talking. There are a few noteworthy brands that have had successful UGC campaigns. For example, Target launched a college acceptance letter campaign that featured raw videos of Highschool students finding out they had been accepted into college. This UGC campaign was to announce Target’s pledge to donate $1 Billion toward education. This UGC campaign worked well to get people talking and created a viral conversation around the topic.

Target Acceptance Campaign:

How to create a UGC Campaign

There are numerous ways to curate user-generated content. A brand could create a contest or sweepstakes that increases consumer participation and ends with a grand prize to incentivize submissions. They could either create or find a hashtag that aligns with their brand and use the content they find there. Brands could also simply ask their customer base to participate. Regardless of how your brand compiles UGC, the main focus is to get people and brand advocates talking. UGC allows brands to use one of their greatest tools, their brand advocates and helps to curate that conversation in a fun and dynamic way.

User generated content campaigns allow you to humanize your brand and create a conversation. Have you ever collected UGC for your brand? Comment below!


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