The Science Behind the Benefits of User Generated Content

The path to winning new customers starts by creating trust, while simultaneously standing out apart from the crowd. Navigating the gray area between familiarity and individuality can be difficult for brands, especially ones just starting out. One of the best resources available for helping retailers work their way through some of the challenges that come with building an identity that shoppers can trust is user generated content. We know content created by customers resonates better with customers than content created by brands, but why?   

Why UGC Resonates Better With Customers than Brand Content

The fact that user generated content helps to humanize brands makes it one of the most effective ways to build trust with new shoppers. The factors that go into making brands feel more like people can include providing content that invites engagement, fostering a sense of community among shoppers and by providing a sense of authenticity by entrusting the voice of the brand to other fellow shoppers. This approach also helps retailers differentiate themselves from the crowd of other retailers who rely solely on brand messaging.  
 
One near-universal truth is that people generally don’t like to feel like they’re being sold. Have you ever gone shopping and felt like a store associate was pushing a certain brand or product on you? The feeling that comes with transactions like that, and ones that stem from an authentic conversation with an associate that went out of their way to earn your trust by learning about your needs and expectations are completely different. User generated content that places the experience of customers at the forefront of the conversations help break down barriers that traditional marketing can’t. Why is that? To get a better understanding of why UGC is such a key to building trust, retailers should try to think like their customers. 

Customer Psychology and UGC

Having a good idea on why customers share user generated content, what they hope to learn from it, and how it influences buying decisions is key for maximizing the impact of UGC. By developing an accurate understanding of customer motivation when it comes to user generated content, retailers can position themselves to gear their engagements with customer content around whatever the customer’s goals are. For example, an interaction a retailer has with a customer who provides content regarding a post-purchase problem or question would be completely different from an interaction where a customer is simply expressing how excited they are to have received a product, and wanting to show it off to shoppers who may be on the fence about a similar purchase. Aside from the motivation behind the use of user generated content, retailers also gain from developing an understanding of who it attracts and why.  

Let’s say your goal as a retailer is to attract more shoppers who fall into the Millennial demographic. Since Millennials contribute over 70% of all UGC, constructing a campaign inviting consumers to provide reviews, or to share a photo of content with a specific hashtag could be the ideal way to capture that audience. Additionally, this approach can help provide a sense of community to consumers who actively engage with UGC regularly. Suppose you’ve made a visit into your favorite restaurant and were greeted by a vibrant, catchy tag encouraging you to share a picture of your meal on Twitter or Instagram. You upload the picture onto your timeline and suddenly you realize the brand reshares your content. That leads to several new likes, mentions and even a few new followers. Keeping this in mind for the next time you decide to go out for dinner, that experience sends you going back to the same restaurant over and over again to try some of the menu items other you’ve seen other users post. The benefits that come with providing customers with the content they want to see are immense. A good UGC campaign can lead to more time being spent on a retailer’s website, a higher likelihood of repeat purchases and ultimately a more personalized shopping experience overall.  

The Long-Lasting Impacts of Consistent UGC

The impact of user generated content goes far beyond increased sales for retailers. Although customer loyalty is a major factor behind why user generated content is so vital for retailers, lowered customer acquisition costs, and a steady supply of digital content all supplied from customers, for customers also serves as motivation for retailers to emphasize UGC collection, too. Since its clear what retailers have to gain from developing an understanding of why UGC is such a necessity, retailers should consider a solution that makes UGC collection as streamlined as possible. That’s exactly where ResellerRatings comes in. 

By providing retailers with assets like visual marketing, leveraging ratings and reviews into eye-catching, social posts is easier than ever, even for those of us that aren’t very social media savvy. One of our representatives would be happy to provide more insight on the numerous resources retailers have at their disposal to generate UGC that influences buying decisions with our ratings and reviews suite. Schedule a demo today to learn how you can start collecting the UGC your customers your customers have been looking for. 

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