This is not some weird Utopia that doesn’t exist. Many brands are leveraging the power of their followers to do the hard work for them and getting their users to create their content.
We call this – User-generated content and it is a great way of showing authenticity in your brand, that people love what you do and that they’re so engaged with your product of service, they want to be part of your story, and they start creating content for you.
Now there are a number of ways that we can encourage our followers and our audiences to create content for us.
The first thing we can do is ask!!!!
It’s as simple as that, are you asking your audience to share their experience, pictures or stories of them using your product? So how do we ask? Here are a few ideas:
- You could add a tag line to your Instagram “Make sure you show us your amazing new outfit. Send a photo to us with you wearing this great product and snap it with this hashtag.” You’re encouraging the users then to get involved with the product and share their own experience, share their look with you on Instagram.
- Run a competition on Facebook or Instagram where the entry is via content – show us your us your best summer outfit, best recipe, cutest pet etc… for your chance to win a …..
- Use your brand hashtag and encourage people to use it – display your tag in your stores, on your menus, in your newsletters and encourage people to tag themselves with this tag.
Make sure you use the great content!
Repurpose and share the content you get tagged in. Remember this is a social industry and people want to feel included. Repost and share great content your tagged in, credit the original person and thank them for the content. Check out the brand Frank Body – they used almost exclusive user generated content to launch their coffee scrub and encouraged people to share their coffee scrubbed moments – might sound odd but it worked!
Create an Army (of social influencers )
It’s not always the big, high-powered social influences with a lot of followers that can be really great advocates for your brand. Sometimes it’s just your day-to-day customers taking snaps, sharing pictures and tagging you in it. Make your best customers feel like VIPs and ask them to be advocates for you – give them a discount or VIP rate in return for reviews, content or just sharing pics. Your current customers are your best social influencers!
Start a Debate or ask for Advice
User-generated content can also be encouraging debate or discussion around a contentious subject. You could simply post an article or post an issue or a question and invite users to talk and to discuss their own experiences or their own opinions on this. This will need a little bit of monitoring because as we know, people love to get on social media and let loose. So ensure that you’ve got a good community management project or a process in place to avoid any unwanted commentary on your page. Setting up as posts or a comment or a question is a great way to encourage debate, and remember social media is social. We want that type of interaction on our platforms.
Check out these brands that use User Generated Content really really well
Power to the people and less work for you – win win.