If you’ve ever written a review or posted about a product you’ve purchased, you’re already privy to user generated content. Now it’s time to take a look from the angle of your own business, and use it to your advantage.
User generated content includes any content posted online, (video, company review, social media post, etc.) by any user. From a business perspective, user generated content is most applicable when the user is not affiliated with your company. This would compromise the integrity of user generated content as a form of earned media, (coverage that you didn’t pay for). So…
People who have experience with your business have the ability to create content about you. They could be a customer, client or fan. While your “target audience” is where you focus your marketing efforts, your broader audience is just as important. Anyone viewing your business can create user generated content, which is great for promotional purposes.
Put simply, user generated content is free publicity. First-hand experiences with your business are being circulated without your communications team even lifting a finger. That’s new-age! Authentic reactions to your business provide credibility, in addition to your regularly-scheduled promotion. Advertisements can seem ingenuine to some, but potential customers trust the opinions of other consumers.
If you’re accumulating user generated content, don’t let it go to waste! Share a testimonial or respond to being mentioned, interacting with this content creates conversation. While your content calendar planning won’t cease to exist, as your reputation builds you can begin to rely on having content from your audience.
It’s on-trend to interact as a brand, and user generated content provides a great opportunity to do so! Remember, you can’t control the media. So, capitalize on positive user generated content to manage perception of your business when possible. Engage with your audience, so that they’ll engage with your business.