User-Generated Content… A Highly Successful Marketing Strategy
What could be a better recommendation than when a consumer, not related to your business in any way, comments within social media platforms, makes a video, writes a review or testimonial, speaks on a podcast, etc. relating positively to the content of your business, brand, products and services?
This is known as “user- generated content” (aka UGC), and is in fact, a highly effective marketing strategy, used by 86% of businesses today, as a means in which to boost their sales figures.
The fact is, websites showcasing UGC are rewarded with a 20% increase in return browsers:
- An Updated Concept. In the old days, when internet was not an option, the closest we came to the concept of user-generated content, was “word of mouth” advertising, whereby one consumer told another about a company, product or service and that person told another, etc. Word of mouth advertising was then considered to be an invaluable marketing tool and it certainly was for its time. Truth be told, it still is to some degree. However, word of mouth advertising doesn’t even begin to come close to connecting with the number of consumers UGC reaches in today’s internet-based market.
- Statistics Paint The True Picture. Essentially, 60% of consumers believe that user-generated content is the best way to receive legitimate information regarding products and services and is the most influential factor for them when making purchases. In fact, UGC is responsible for close to a 75% hike in email click throughs, in addition to promoting 4 times more click throughs for UGC based ads. Current research shows that nearly 50% of consumers rely on user-generated content to introduce them to new products, companies and service providers. Additionally, due to UGC, approximately 25% of online searches performed, lead consumers to many of the world’s most well-known and successful companies, brands, products and services. The statistics positively demonstrate that user-generated content is an extremely advantageous and highly profitable marketing strategy that all merchants, companies and service providers should consider employing as a means for significantly building their businesses.
- Creating Additional UGC. The good news is that much of your business’ user-generated content will happen naturally without your involvement. Given their love of sharing information, our millennial population is extremely likely to express their opinions and recommendations of your company, brand, products and services somewhere online and they absolutely love to be invited to do so. This is the general way of the world these days. It appears that millennials like to influence others. To take advantage of this phenomenon, don’t hesitate to ask your customers for feedback. Follow-up with them after a purchase and let them know you are interested in hearing all about what they’ve experienced with your firm and their purchase. Be honest and inform them you are looking to build your brand and might possibly publish their feedback on your website as well as posting it on various social media platforms. Be specific about the type of information you’re looking for and encourage them to tell their stories and to include photos and videos if it applies.
- Choosing Appropriate Social Media Platforms. Research various social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter for example, to determine where your particular audience is. Observe what methods work best on each platform. For some it will be pictures and videos. For others it may be testimonials or comments. For instance Facebook is a great place for videos and stories while Twitter might be more conducive to posting visuals only. Do your research, figure it out what would work best for your business and proceed accordingly.
It goes without saying that you’ll need to carefully track your results in order to see what is and isn’t working for you. User-generated content is only helpful if your audience is actually seeing it.
You’ll want to ask all of your customers exactly how they found you and keep that information in an organized fashion. Be sure to monitor and analyze the data you’re receiving.
You may find that some platforms are more successful for you than others. You’ll also need to determine what specifically is or isn’t working on each particular platform.
Then make the appropriate adjustments. As long as you continue to encourage your customers to speak up, stay on top of the social media platforms you’re using and make changes as needed, you will more than likely find that user-generated content is the way to go in creating a much more profitable business.
Important Notice to all High-Risk Merchants
We know just how difficult it is for all start-up and experienced high-risk businesses to obtain and keep their high-risk merchant accounts. If you’re in need of assistance, you’ll definitely want to talk with us.
We’re First Card Payments and we can and will end your struggles today. Our extremely high success rate comes from the fact that we’ve been in the high-risk merchant account business for twenty years. We have the experience, know-how and contacts necessary to get the job done for you quickly and easily and at a very fair rate.
First Card Payments is consistently 25% less than our competitors when it comes to fees, guaranteed! We walk the talk! Once we help you obtain your merchant account, we’ll remain with you for the long haul and do all that’s necessary to support you in keeping it. We’re always there when and if you need us. That’s our promise to you and we won’t let you down.
Find us at: FirstCardPayments.com
Joyce Hope is a writer who specializes in merchant accounts. She has worked for First Card Payments since 2017.