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Marketing has gone a long way since the time of print media. And in this age of digital marketing, the power to influence consumers and the market no longer belong to brand managers and brand makers — it now belongs to the consumers themselves.
Before social media and the internet, consumers are only able to get their information about a brand or product from ads and commercials. Now, user reviews, Facebook groups, and blog posts are highly sought by audiences to help them decide whether they will buy into a product or not.
Because of this shift, having your followers engage with your brand’s marketing efforts will help boost your brand’s likeability and publicity in the market. And even counter an anti-branding or smear campaign.
User-Generated Content and Branding
If you examine big brands and their marketing campaigns recently, you will notice that most of them are encouraging their followers and customers to share their experiences with others. These campaigns are called “user-generated campaigns” and is heavily driven by brand followers and their content. Coke’s tagline ”Share a Coke” campaign, Netflix’s hashtag campaign for their original series and Under Armour’s “unlike any” campaign on Instagram are just some example of a user-driven brand campaign.
How To Use UGC For Your Brand Campaigns
While using a user-driven brand campaign strategy is effective in getting publicity and brand followers on social media, it requires thorough planning and proper execution to create a successful UGC campaign. Below, we list some tips on how you could increase your chances of having a successful user-driven campaign:
Create a meaningful background for your campaign – Like all marketing campaigns, your user-driven marketing strategy must be grounded in your company’s principles and ideals. Your campaign must be relevant to your target audience and must promote your company’s values.
A good example of this is Adobe’s #adobeperspective campaign, where they show the power of their software by asking artists and content creators to share their work using the hashtag. Since Adobe’s software is created with artists and creators in mind, creating a campaign that empowers these audiences is a good move.
Use Hashtags – Hashtags are a product of social media. Before the rise of hashtags in 2007, aggregating content on the internet was hard. But thanks to the creation of hashtags, it’s easy to collect content by simply using a specific hashtag on posts.
By creating a unique hashtag for your campaign and promoting it to your target audience, it would be easy for you to gather user content online. Having a unique hashtag will also help other users find your promotional content faster and easier.
Share User Content on Official Social Media Platforms- Everyone enjoys being recognised, especially by big brands. By curating and sharing user content on your official platforms, you empower followers to take part in the campaign, and your followers will appreciate the recognition and “bragging rights” they will get when you promote their work.
Give Incentives For Sharing – Prizes and freebies are also something that can encourage your followers to take part in your brand campaign. This is also a good strategy in increasing your following and online presence as you can get likes and shares from people outside your following that could be potential customers.
Your prizes and freebies don’t need to be big or expensive, but it should be tempting enough to get people to share with friends and family. Some good examples could be a simple gift check or a free 7-day subscription to your services.
Make It Fun – Social media users enjoy fun activities since it helps them relieve stress from the daily grind. Completing small puzzles or sharing a selfie are some good ideas you can use to make your user-generated brand campaign fun and interesting for everyone.
Start Your Own UGC Brand Campaign
Starting a UGC campaign is perhaps the most effective marketing strategy in this age of social media. With users being big influencers on social media, employing their help in marketing your brand can result in better brand engagement and a large increase of brand following over time.
But starting a UGC campaign is not a walk in the park. It requires a lot of creative thinking and must be properly executed to work. If you want to launch a successful user-driven marketing campaign but don’t know how, it would be best to ask help from a competent SEO Specialist.