5 Ways to Benefit from User Generated ContentCollecting feedback from users can provide fresh unique content for your website while increasing user participation and breeding loyalty across your brand. Getting loyal customers to post their opinions makes useful and unique content for your website and helps feeds the engagement of like minded individuals while countering any negative reviews that might arise. There are many ways to work with an online community to help customers find you, engage, and purchase.

5 Ways to Benefit from User Generated Content

  1. Reviews

    Online reviews have become the new gold standard for measuring audience feedback of a product, especially media-oriented items such as movies, music and books. Just ask Amazon, who helped revolutionize online marketing by aggressively posting customer reviews of products that went well beyond its original core of pop culture merchandise. Reviews are heavily read by people who want to learn about what others think before they make purchases. Now that there are millions of products available to choose from, reviews help narrow down shopping lists for like-minded consumers. Reviews can be very helpful to websites that sell any online products.

  2. Social Media

    Social networks such as Facebook and Twitter can be used in conjunction with your website to engage with users. Instead of you paying a programmer thousands of dollars to bring all your customers together on one platform, you can do it for free with social media. It’s an excellent way to get instant feedback from your supporters and and to showcase new products and services in a more informative than persuasive approach. Social media can also be used to start campaigns such as consumer movements, petitions or even fundraising through a crowd funding site such as KickStarter.

  3. Surveys

    Inviting people to participate in online surveys through social media or an interactive website can generate a wide range of reports that users might find interesting. The internet has increased awareness and excitement about data, rankings and statistics collected through web experiences. If you publish regular surveys, such as music of film popularity polls, you can gain a following that keeps up with your website as a resource and barometer for the latest trends. It could help your articles go viral when people share your stats on Facebook.

  4. Contests

    Allowing your users to participate in online contests can generate compelling content that cannot be found anywhere else. A songwriting competition, for example, may attract attention regardless of the type of business that is promoting the contest. Perhaps the contest is to create a certain theme song about an industry or business and the prize is a year of free online promotion for that songwriter. Contests can bring many creative people together and even form a collective talent pool. The more random the contest is, the more likely the prize needs to be cash-oriented or tied in with sponsors.

  5. Suggestions

    Use customer suggestions as a way of letting your market know that you listen to your community. Post constructive suggestions on a special page, whether you plan to follow the suggestions or not. Consider suggestions to be part of a research archive of possible future ideas. Sometimes ideas are ahead of their time and can be used at a later date. Offering any kind of  “suggestion box” gives people a sense of participating with your company’s development.

As you build your online presence it will be essential to stay in close content with your audience and make sure that you are both offering them a means to maintain engagement with you online and hopefully contribute.  As your audience participation increases users will build a loyalty to your brand and start following the direction of like minded individuals endorsing your product or services.

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Co-Founder & COO at PageLadder, Inc.
Entrepreneur, inbound marketing professional & outdoors enthusiast who finds joy in overcoming obstacles.
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