Best practices for using user-generated video content

User-generated content (UGC) is any form of content that is created by users or customers of a brand, product, or service. UGC can include text, images, audio, and video content. UGC is a powerful marketing tool because it can increase brand awareness, engagement, trust, loyalty, and conversions.

Video content is one of the most popular and effective forms of UGC. According to a report by Wyzowl, 86% of video marketers say that video has increased traffic to their website, 83% say that video has helped them generate leads, and 80% say that video has increased sales.

User-generated video content can be used for various purposes in marketing, such as showcasing product features, providing customer reviews, sharing tutorials and how-to guides, telling stories, and creating viral campaigns.

However, using user-generated video content in marketing is not as simple as collecting and posting videos from your customers. You need to follow some best practices and tips to ensure that your UGC videos are effective and engaging.

Here are some best practices for using user-generated video content in marketing:

1. Encourage User Creativity

One of the benefits of user-generated video content is that it showcases the creativity and unique perspectives of your customers. This not only brings diversity and variety to your content but also fosters a deeper connection with your brand.

To encourage user creativity, you need to provide clear and simple guidelines for creating UGC videos, but also give enough room for users to express themselves. You can also use incentives, such as contests, rewards, or recognition, to motivate users to create videos for your brand.

For example, GoPro, a leading brand of action cameras, encourages user creativity by running the GoPro Awards, a program that rewards users for submitting their best videos captured with GoPro cameras. The program offers cash prizes, gear, and exposure for the best videos in various categories, such as adventure, animals, family, music, sports, and travel.

2. Establish Trust and Credibility

User-generated video content is considered more reliable and honest by customers than branded or sponsored content. According to a survey by Stackla, 79% of consumers say that UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions, while only 13% say that branded content does.

User-generated video content can help you establish trust and credibility with your audience by showing real and authentic experiences of your customers with your brand, product, or service. UGC videos can also help you showcase your social proof, such as ratings, reviews, testimonials, or endorsements from your customers.

For example, Airbnb, a leading online platform for booking accommodation and experiences, uses user-generated video content to establish trust and credibility with its audience. Airbnb features UGC videos from its hosts and guests on its website and social media channels, showing how they use Airbnb to travel, explore, and connect with different cultures and communities.

3. Engage and Convert Better

User-generated video content has a high shareability potential and can increase conversions for your eCommerce store. User-generated video content can help you engage and convert your audience better by providing them with valuable information, entertainment, or inspiration. UGC videos can also help you create a sense of urgency or scarcity by showing how popular or in-demand your products or services are among your customers.

For example, Sephora, a leading beauty retailer, uses user-generated video content to engage and convert its audience better. Sephora features UGC videos from its customers on its website and social media channels, showing how they use Sephora products to create different looks, styles, and trends. Sephora also uses UGC videos to promote its loyalty program, which offers exclusive benefits and rewards for its members.

4. Provide Value

User-generated tutorials and how-to videos are valuable resources for consumers seeking guidance on how to use or benefit from your products or services. According to a report by Google, 86% of viewers say they often use YouTube to learn new things.

User-generated video content can help you provide value to your audience by offering them useful tips, tricks, hacks, or solutions related to your products or services. UGC videos can also help you establish your brand as an authority in your industry by showcasing your expertise and knowledge.

For example, Home Depot, a leading home improvement retailer, uses user-generated video content to provide value to its audience. Home Depot features UGC videos from its customers on its website and social media channels, showing how they use Home Depot products to complete various DIY projects, such as building a fire pit, installing a ceiling fan, or painting a room.

5. Feature of authentic and relatable Content

User-generated video reviews and testimonials are persuasive because they are relatable, unscripted, and undeniably authentic. According to a report by Bazaarvoice, 51% of consumers trust UGC more than other information on a company website.

User-generated video content can help you feature authentic and relatable content that resonates with your audience by showing real and honest feedback from your customers. UGC videos can also help you showcase your brand personality and values by featuring customers who share your brand’s vision and mission.

For example, Patagonia, a leading outdoor clothing and gear brand, uses user-generated video content to feature authentic and relatable content that resonates with its audience. Patagonia features UGC videos from its customers on its website and social media channels, showing how they use Patagonia products to enjoy nature, adventure, and activism. Patagonia also uses UGC videos to support its environmental and social causes, such as protecting public lands, fighting climate change, and empowering women.

6. Moderate Content

While user-generated video content can bring many benefits to your marketing strategy, it can also pose some risks and challenges. You need to ensure that UGC videos are of the highest quality and do not contain any malicious, inappropriate, or offensive content that can harm your brand reputation or violate any laws or regulations.

To moderate user-generated video content, you need to implement some policies and procedures for reviewing, approving, rejecting, or removing UGC videos. You can also use tools or platforms that offer automated or manual moderation features, such as filters, flags, ratings, or reports.

For example, YouTube, the largest online video platform, uses user-generated video content moderation to ensure that UGC videos comply with its community guidelines and terms of service. YouTube uses a combination of automated systems, human reviewers, and user reports to moderate UGC videos. YouTube also offers tools for users to control their own UGC videos, such as age restrictions, privacy settings, or comments.

7. Optimize for Viewing Experience

User-generated video content can only be effective and engaging if it is optimized for the viewing experience of your audience. You need to ensure that UGC videos load fast on all devices and browsers and are of the highest quality possible.

To optimize user-generated video content for the viewing experience, you need to use tools or platforms that offer features such as compression, transcoding, adaptive streaming, or CDN delivery. You can also use tools or platforms that offer features such as thumbnails, captions, annotations, or playlists.

For example, Vimeo, a leading online video platform for professionals and businesses, uses user-generated video content optimization to ensure that UGC videos are of the highest quality and performance possible. Vimeo uses features such as advanced compression, adaptive streaming, or CDN delivery to optimize UGC videos for the viewing experience. Vimeo also offers features such as custom thumbnails, captions, annotations, or playlists to enhance UGC videos for the viewing experience.

8. Give Credit to Creators

User-generated video content is a form of co-creation between your brand and your customers. You need to give credit to the creators of UGC videos and showcase their contributions. This not only acknowledges their efforts but also fosters a sense of community and loyalty towards your brand.

To give credit to the creators of user-generated video content, you need to use features such as tags, mentions, shoutouts, or credits. You can also use features such as badges, rankings, or leaderboards to recognize the creators of UGC videos.

For example, TikTok, a leading short-form video platform, uses user-generated video content credit to acknowledge the creators of UGC videos and showcase their contributions. TikTok uses features such as tags, mentions, shoutouts, or credits to give credit to the creators of UGC videos. TikTok also uses features such as badges, rankings, or leaderboards to recognize the creators of UGC videos.

By following these best practices for using user-generated video content in marketing, you can effectively leverage UGC videos in your marketing strategy and engage with your audience in a more authentic and meaningful way. User-generated video content can help you increase brand awareness, engagement, trust, loyalty, and conversions.

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