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User Generated Content - The Customer As Brand Ambassador
April 22, 2021
STOCKHOLM


I love the idea of ​​win-win situations! They are one of my biggest guiding stars in life and something I really try to apply as often as I can. No matter what you sell, you can create a situation where satisfied customers become your best brand ambassadors. Just make sure they are proud of their investment and the rest will follow (with the right UGC strategy).

Does that sound like lots of karma mumbo-jumbo? Maybe, but you will miss an incredible opportunity if you do not let the buyer get an outlet for their positive thoughts about your product, your brand or even your own team that they work with.

In short: Let your customers brag about their successful purchase, it will make you both happy!

What is UGC?

User Generated Content, is content that is created by users and is available on product's platform. Everything from written reviews and testimonials, to audio and video productions are included in the UGC strategy. The major goal with this approach is that the content needs to be created by the users themselves and it has to be consumed by other users. Happy customers tweeting, snapchatting, and instagramming about your products is one of the most effective and completely free forms of advertising. In fact, a reported 37 percent consumers look to their social networks to learn more about specific brands and products before making a purchase. Using UGC also is a proven way to boost your social media engagement and increase followers by up to 400 percent.

What does UGC mean to you as an entrepreneur?

Of course, it depends on who you will ask, but for most customers, the answer would be that it is very crucial. The statistics speak for themselves:

- 70% of all customers put recommendations from others before professional reviews according to reevo.com

With those numbers that we have in front of us, it is unreasonable for you as an entrepreneur not to set up, or try to improve, your UGC strategy.

Create a successful UGC strategy

It starts with ambition, imagination and lots of creativity. The easiest way is for your website to have some sort of a feature where users can submit written testimonials and ratings, for public viewing. In the most advanced cases, users could upload and present self-produced media, linked back to your product.

Saying that one way is better than another is difficult, but the current trends are showing that the the consumers tend to prefer video content, over text. Just imagine yourself a text where a customer describes how he is happy with his new skateboard. Now take that thought and place it next to a video that is created with a GoPro and that shows a wild ride down the street, with an amazing sunset behind. A video that ends with the filmmaker holding up his skateboard and roaring how good it felt. Which content do you think will create most engagement?

At the moment, Instagram is the largest and most popular platform for brands to build their UGC strategy on. Start by creating a hashtag around your product and an incentive for your customers to publish photos for you to repost on your account and let the magic begin.

What does a successful UGC campaign look like?

A very successful, recurring Christmas campaign that I really like is Starbucks' #RedCupContest. Customers need a red Starbucks cup (released just in time for the winter season), wild imagination and an Instagram account. The customer can brag about their coffee, which most people still do, as well as the chance to win an expensive gift card. Starbucks sells a lot of red cups and gets a great branding. Last year's competition generated a total of 40,399 posts that were shared on Instagram. In this way UGC turns a loyal enthusiastic consumer into an automatic campaigner of brand in order to build engagements among various communities for their products or services. This gives an incredible ability for the passionate customers or partners of the brand to provide a more authentic recommendation to other communities and customers in helping them make a buying decision.


Takeaway for Marketers: Try to give your customers and users a platform from which they can brag about their successful purchase. You don't need to sell luxury items there are plenty of everyday brands with cult followings who love to get engaged on social media about why they love shopping, buying or using certain platforms over others. Create a hashtag that lets customers share why they love you, and they'll for sure love you back.

Judy Shalom is CEO of Advedro, Author, Entrepreneur and most of all she is a strong business woman of shared learning, transparent communication and visionary leadership. She lectures and attends various types of digital marketing panels where she excels at explaining online marketing concepts.