How Do I Get User-Generated Content?

Trustworthiness is one of the leading indicators of how well brands connect to their audiences. A way around this issue is to create a space for user-generated content. How do I get user-generated content, you ask?

The first step in every user-generated campaign is creating your goal. Do you want to increase product or brand awareness, or are you looking to sell as many products as you can? Are you looking for a long-term influencer, or would you prefer a random viewer to win sweepstakes and contests?

All answers to those questions come with a positive impact on your company’s trustworthiness. Here are four ways to turn your existing fans into your best marketers.

Hashtag Championing

Advertisements and marketing campaigns dictate how customers use or interact with products or services. A User-Generated campaign leaves this aspect up to the customers themselves, free from the creative control of advertising agencies or in-house staff. By introducing a targeted yet straightforward hashtag to social media, a brand can let imaginations run wild with their artistic engagement. The best part about championing a hashtag is the ability to document its success in real time.

Safe (Brand) Spaces

Choosing the right social media platform is a hot topic for us at Valorous Circle. Not only is attaching your brand to a social or professional network a low-cost investment, but it could also yield enormous returns for different types of content. While hashtags work across all systems, media works in varying degrees. Find the best platform/content pairings below.

  • Video – Facebook, YouTube
  • Photography – Instagram
  • Blog Features – Twitter
  • News Articles – Twitter, LinkedIn
  • Wild Card – Pinterest

Our list doesn’t tell you which social media you should choose to market your products or services. You can find that more information on that topic below.

Choosing the right social media network for your business

When users have the chance to generate their content, they still need detailed direction on what and where to submit their works. Video is best on the most accessible platforms – Facebook and YouTube. While it has video ability, Instagram is still the best resource to produce and share stunning imagery.

Written content, whether in blog or news form, has a friend in Twitter and LinkedIn after Facebook’s crackdowns on ‘fake’ news. Younger users have less trust in ads on social networks than any generation and would prefer to get their news directly from the source material.

LinkedIn is also emerging as a source of valuable content because it has to be more stringent with your brand’s message. The capabilities to attract user content may be less important than the final broadcast. By showcasing the best user content on LinkedIn, you can legitimize specific messages and individual professionals.

Pinterest is the wild card of User-Generate Content because it’s already User-Generated Content. Very little of what people on share on Pinterest is doctored or disingenuous. The site exists to share crafts, thoughts, and ideas feasible to other users.

Star Searching For an Influencer

Seeing what your customer base is creating and how the outside world receives those creations is fun. Going one layer deeper, you can utilize user campaigns to understand who is the best at relaying your brand’s information to the people. Creating and sharing content may be a knack for a particular user across the country. This person could become your chosen influencer – a valuable source in future marketing plans.

Contest Time

The last big way to reel in users is by having a contest. This method will also be the lightest use of creative content, but the heaviest in general brand awareness. People love to get free stuff. If all a user has to do is share a hashtag and tag their friend in a comment, all the more reason to offer up a low-cost contest.

Contests can also be intricate. However, prize value must be worth creation time and cost. You cannot expect someone to create the best video on Topic X if the prize is hardly worth its weight in social engagement – for you and your creators.

How Do I Get User-Generated Content? The answer will be different for every business.


If you need help on where to start, please schedule a call with the marketing professionals at Valorous Circle.

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