Do I Want User-Generated Content or Influencer Marketing?

by Influencers, Social Media Marketing

User-Generated Content

User-Generated Content is content from customers, users, and people. These people interact with your brand. The content can include video, images, social media posts, and reviews. Today’s marketing is not limited to social posts either. Therefore, user-generated content is any time a person makes content related to your brand.

Influencer Marketing Content

Influencer Content is a more specific segment of user content. It is still a person providing content and the content still relates to your brand. However, an influencer is different because they have an identifiable audience that they are sharing with. It is this audience that sets influencer content apart from the rest of the user-generated content on the internet.

User-generated content or influencer marketing comparison chart

As you can see, there are some differences between user-generated content and influencer marketing content. Influencer content has a similar level of trust and authority. The difference is that they require more communication with the brand to create their content. User content, on the other hand, can be a loose canon because users aren’t affiliated with the brand in any way. They can be as brutally honest as they want. 

Ways to Encourage UGC

There are many on-site optimizations you can use to help user-generated content

  • Display Instagram and social images on your product page to encourage customers to contribute their own images.
  • Send follow up emails after a purchase requesting a review. 
  • Post photo contests on social media, offering a prize for the best pictures contributed.
  • Create an “actionable” hashtag. Create a hashtag that implies the required action by the consumer, such as #MarriedinModcloth or #ShareYourEars. Both hashtags clearly direct the consumer when to post. You post when you are married in a Modcloth dress or when you are wearing your Mickey ears. 
  • Strategically place CTAs. If you are using a hashtag, drop it into your Instagram bio, print it on flyers to insert into physical orders, or list it on the product page. Your customers should be able to easily find the information needed to post and share.
  • Incentivize sharing. Customers who use the hashtag, share a review, or post about the brand can get a coupon code, discount on next purchase, or even free samples.
  • Use influencer-generated content to help set the precedent for user-generated content. Ask influencers to help encourage other users to post similar stories or to participate in a particular campaign.

Marketing with User-Generated Content and Influencer Marketing Content

So which method should you be using? That depends entirely on your goals, but the best answer is both! Building the infrastructure to encourage user-generated content will help to automate the process. This will give you some time to actively develop your influencer-generated content strategy. 

Both pieces of content creation are necessary to a successful brand’s marketing plan. Your customers will find this content more trustworthy and authentic than typical brand posts.

A good system for brands to follow would have a consistent flood of user and influencer content. Therefore, this consistent buzz will drive traffic to your website and increase your brand awareness with each new post.

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