You go into your favorite pizza shop and on the counter next to the cash register is a small sign that says “Like us on Facebook!” At your eye doctor, right next to display of business cards, there’s a laminated flyer that says “Give us a good rating on Facebook!” Even at your child’s school, they’re doing a fundraiser and encouraging parents to share the info on social media.
Yes, social media has indeed integrated itself into nearly every aspect of our lives. But have you noticed something in the above examples? All of these organizations are asking customers / patients / patrons, to interact with their social media channels.
When your customers engage with your brand on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and the other platforms, they are solidifying its identity and legitimacy as credible company. The beauty of social media marketing is that when you have an engaging online presence, your customers essentially do the work for you by tagging your accounts, commenting, rating, and much more.
This is the “social” part of social media — your customers are sharing their story and perception of your brand. We call this User Generated Content (UGC).
Why is UGC so important? It allows customers to share their story and build a relationship with your business. By creating this content, they’re participating in one of the most responsive and innovative forms of customer service ever conceived. The best part of this is that your customer’s friends will see their review, like, or comment and as a result, your brand’s visibility will increase. The term “word-of-mouth” just received an upgrade, and it’s amazing for business.
So, you may be wondering, how do I get my followers talking? This is a valid question. After all, it doesn’t benefit your company to have, say, 5,000 followers if none of them are engaging with your brand. Here are just a few tips that could help you get people talking online and increase UGC.
1. Host a contest requiring participants to comment, follow, or leave a review.
2. Directly ask customers to engage with your company on social media (as the pizza shop, eye doctor, and school did.)
3. Share polls with your followers.
4. Offer social-media-exclusive discounts on social media.
5. Start asking your customers questions. The pizza shop could ask “What topping combo should be Flavor of the Month?”
6. Create content that your customer will find useful and that they will want to share, such as blogs and podcasts.
These are just a few ways to increase UGC. However, one thing that is important to keep in mind is that all this is meant to start a conversation. You need to respond, thank them for their comment, and encourage them to continue this customer-brand relationship.
At The Go! Agency, we take pride in generating UGC for our clients through our content and target advertising. If your brand isn’t getting any love online, contact us! We can get the ball rolling for you!
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