Building a strong brand is a marketers’ ultimate goal. Creating a personal-like connexion with their customers is the key to reach impactful brand awareness. Consumers aren’t fools, and simply buying products they need is not enough anymore. They want to engage with brands, connect with them and to get customized messages.
User-generated content (literally the content created by users on social media about a brand or a product) has been playing a crucial role in helping brands to connect with their consumers. It’s cost-effective, it can get viral, and it generates authentic visibility and engagement. A common take on user-generated content is that only brands with an existing huge fan base can use it. But when influencer marketing jumps in, the cards are reshuffled.
Influencers are personalities on social media with a large and engaged audience who create top-performing content. Their content has been proven to boost visibility and generate sales for brands of all sizes and industries. They are super-consumers elected by users for their ability to entertain, review, and showcase products.
User-generated content is spontaneous content created by engaged consumers around a brand they like. It encourages organic online conversations and further organic content from other users. The good side? It’s free, authentic and trustworthy. Consumers don’t get paid for showcasing the brand. It comes from a genuine love for the product or service. Downsides may be content quality and clarity of message, over which the brand has no control.
This post is a good example of user-generated content. On Instagram, @macro.girl is an artist who gave her own interpretation of Nespresso on her feed. This content is of high quality but the brand didn’t ask for it.
On the other hand, influencer generated content is a professional source of high-quality content directed to a targeted audience. The message is clear and aligned with the brand’s global communication. It often generates conversion as influencers have been established as a reliable source of recommendations by their audience.
This post by @ateaspoonofstyle is in line with Nespresso’s brand image. The caption mentions a limited edition of their Tribute to Milano coffee, in a highly-stylized photo. Quality content like this can be reused by the brand on its website or social media channels.
Influencer generated content performs better than branded content. Why? Because influencers have won over their audience by publishing high-quality content. They know what their audience is interested in and create posts according to their expectations.
Influencer-generate content requires investment: you can choose whether to offer influencers free products or pay them a fee. But the results are there. As influencer-generated content is fresh and up-to-date, brands have seen an increase in engagement, social media channels, web traffic and even on sales. Furthermore, they can easily reuse high-quality, on-brand content from their collaborations with influencers.
Influencer-generated content is a new way to create branded content that is authentic and engaging. We encourage brands to partner with relevant influencers for their audience, in terms of interests, content, and performance in past collaborations. With the Branded-content Ads feature on Instagram, brands can now re-use user and influencer-generated content to promote themselves on consumers’ feed.