The best form of marketing is getting a recommendation from a real person. As human beings, we trust each other’s opinions and give those opinions from those we know, like and trust more validity as being unbiased and truthful. A recommendation from a fellow neighbor feels much less like a sales pitch and more in tune with what’s best for you. How can your financial institution take this same idea and apply it to your marketing department? The best way to get marketing content that feels like it’s Word of Mouth rather than curated and salesy is to create a process around obtaining user-generated content (UGC).
What is User Generated Content (UGC)
UGC is content that talks about your financial institution, but that is not written by your financial institution. You’ll see this in a number of different ways, such as online reviews, social media posts, video shoutouts, and so on. There’s several categories for UGC, but the two main ones for financial institutions are member content and employee content. Member content comes in the form of online reviews such as Google , or shout outs to your financial institution on your member’s favorite social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Employee content comes in the form of social posts on LinkedIn announcing they’ve just joined your team, or sharing information about a special project or initiative. Additionally, it could be a review on Glassdoor about your team and company culture. Both of these forms of UGC are incredibly important to utilize in terms of building trust and brand image for your financial institution.
These forms of positive content aren’t coming specifically from your financial institution. They come across as more authentic because they’re being written with a presumably unbiased opinion. When a consumer goes out of their way to leave your financial institution a positive review, the natural assumption is that they genuinely enjoy your financial institution, and that consumer’s voice feels unbiased and trustworthy.
Your marketing team may think that they’re developing unbiased and trustworthy content, but the numbers say otherwise. According to a report, 92% of marketers believe most content they create comes off as authentic. In reality, over half of consumers say less than half of brands create content that feels authentic.
UGC spotlights your members and your employees, not the business itself. This makes the content come across as far more authentic, and it feels less forced, building brand trust with your members and prospective members. Use your members to gain reviews and positive feedback on your own social channels and marketing materials. Brand trust and brand loyalty will lead to more engaged members and more engaged employees, building a healthier ecosystem around your financial institution via your marketing department.
How to Generate UGC
Two ways in which your marketing department can start to generate and utilize UGC quickly is through gaining more online reviews and creating a dedicated company hashtag.
Positive online reviews are the easiest and best way to start building a UGC pipeline for your marketing department. It’s incredibly easy to take a batch of 4-5 positive reviews that (presumably) already exist, and make them into graphics cards, slideshows, dedicated testimonial web pages, and so on. Generating more online reviews poses challenges, but with the addition of an omnichannel digital communications platform, your team can establish a pipeline of sending out review requests at the right time. Not only will your team be maintaining your online presence, but will also be generating positive reviews.
Creating a dedicated company hashtag is a great way for your marketing team to go onto popular social media outlets, such as Instagram and Facebook, and search for mentions of your financial institution.By establishing this dedicated hashtag, along with marketing it across your communications, members and employees can start to use this hashtag to create a community beyond the branch. Once this hashtag has been developed, your marketing team can easily search and highlight pieces of content that would work the best to help you meet your marketing goals. The best part is these posts are already pre-made, in a sense. All your marketing team is doing is highlighting your members and employees.
Getting started with generating UGC is much easier than you think; if people have shouted out your business on social media before, or left you positive online reviews, there’s content out there for you to utilize right now. To learn how Eltropy is helping financial institutions generate more online reviews for a better online reputation and more user-generated content, request a demo today.