User Generated Content
Content creation continues to be at the heart of many website issues for small businesses. Without quality content, a website is going to struggle to compete in the online marketplace. Considering the resources involved in either outsourcing or hiring in house content creation, many small businesses feel they are at a disadvantage.  Utilizing user generated content (UGC) is one tactic to make up for that disadvantage.
Wondering what is user generated content in relation to marketing? UGC can come in the form of blog posts, photos, product reviews and really any tangible response to your brand from a customer. Here is a list of 10 of the best examples. A user generated content campaign you come up with will inherently be different to that of some of the national and international brands on the list, but you should still get a good idea of what makes them successful.
One of my favorite reasons for using UGC is that it’s naturally more trustworthy content. One of the more difficult hurdles in creating content is to get the reader to trust what you are producing. If the source of the content is naturally more trusted by users from the start, you are already ahead of the game, regardless of content itself (to an extent).
Travis Wright from says “smart brands are creating stories and moments to engage in versus products to push. UGC creates opportunities for brands to authentically connect with their customers…invasive advertising just doesn’t work anymore.”

Tips for Your Own UGC Campaign

Wondering how you could possibly take advantage of some user generated content to jumpstart your content marketing game?
If so, keep the following tips in mind when trying to strengthen your brand-consumer relationships:
1. Provide incentives – Ideally, your customers would love your business so much that there would be no hesitation to be a part of your content strategy, but realistically, some type of incentive is required.
2. Speak the language of your customers – be appropriately casual or formal, based on how you understand your customers tend to communicate with you.
3. Flexible content – Make sure the content your customers are providing is something that can be used in more than just one way.
If your UGC campaign doesn’t work and you don’t get much of a response, think about why that might be, and what you can do to create a better product or provide a better service that inspires your customers. An effective UGC campaign can help increase sales and strengthen customer communities. Talk to your Internet Marketing Consultant to see if your brand could utilize user generated content.