User-generated content (UGC) is in many ways a successful and influential tool on how to create content. One beneficial aspect of UGC is that it supports your brand image and it’s an easy way to take care of your brand image.
Each brand is associated with a certain image – this specific brand image results from several different factors, one of them is a particular target group. Your target group with their specific characteristics stands in direct connection with the image that you deliver as a brand. There are many brands which would like to address customers that are successful and who are in their mid- twenties, in the end, however, they actually target middle-classed mid- thirties.
That is why researching your target group is so important when defining the image you want to deliver and especially the way you want to be seen. Furthermore UGC is a useful source of knowledge if you wish to find out how the corporate identity of your brand is being perceived. Pictures from real customers that show your products will give you an idea on how your products are being used, combined, liked and valued. You should use this source of information to learn more about your customers and how they use your products. Three prime advantages result from the analysis of UGC.
Gaining insights about your customers
With each picture that customers share, you will learn new things about them. You will be able see, how and where they use you product, what they read, eat and drink, what destinations they travel to and what activities they participated in. In short, with each photo shared you will receive further insights into the daily lives of your target group/customers. Subsequently, this will allow you to draw conclusions regarding their needs while planning your marketing strategies. Use the collected information for further proceedings and develop a prototype customer by connecting different UGC photos. This way you will be able to ensure that your marketing campaign will not only create awareness but also engagement.
Receiving feedback about your product
At a certain point during the buying process you will ask customers for feedback. Whether this is done via email or directly on your website is up to you. However you will want to know how satisfied your customers were with the product they purchased. This aspect should not be neglected as it will give you relevant information on how they valued the overall shopping experience and what needs to be improved to make things even better e.g. concerning shipping or simply the quality of the product. By using UGC you will receive fast and direct feedback from customers that have bought your product.
Captions of shared content will reveal what people really think about your product. Often customers even write long and lavish product reviews which are considered to be far more convincing than ordinary product reviews. Be wise and take time to read through this material written by your customers – you might find useful comments that should be taken into consideration for product development. Besides, shared content might also offer relevant information about wishes and suggestions directly from your customers. Use these opinions to learn from them, to make the most of your product. But most importantly, clearly show your visual UGC, this way you can promote, how, when, where and why people are using your product. Remember that you won’t get any feedback that is as direct and honest as UGC.
Engagement and brand loyalty
Consumers share their content and you present it – e.g. on your website or on your social media channels. Other users will see the content created by other customers. They will feel inspired to share their own content with you as a brand. In short; UGC creates and increases interaction with potential customers. By acknowledging the fact that you are interacting with former customers, users are more likely to feel tempted to share their own insights with you. It is safe to say that integrating and presenting UGC will always have a positive effect on how customers value your brand. This way you will appear to be more approachable and it is a good way to prove that you value your customers’ content and their opinions.
UGC is considered to be authentic and realistic – for that reason presentations that contain UGC appear to be more authentic and truthful than those that include brand-generated content. UGC helps to bind customers to your brand and to improve brand loyalty. They will have a better feeling when it comes to purchasing your products because they know that you value their opinion and they have real proof that others have been satisfied with your products.
Use UGC for your brand appearance and emphasise user opinions in order to develop a true bond between you as a brand and your customers. Construct your brand image around customer opinions and continue to update your product to meet their needs. Remember to stay loyal, truthful and authentic.
Photo by Pablo Garcia Saldana via unsplash.com
This post is also available in: German