Using User Generated Content For Your Business

Written by Melanie Revins on 22nd February 2017

Planning a social media strategy for your business can often look like a battle that’s too big to take on. Over the past 10 years, social media marketing has come out of student dorm rooms, and into the multi-million euro boardrooms of some of the biggest brands on the planet. The solution may well be using user generated content for your business.

User generated content is great for for three key reasons:

  • It’s FREE
  • The content is effective
  • Other users find it relevant

There are countless examples, dotted all around the web, of hugely successful user generated content campaigns. A good example of this type of campaign in Ireland, would be the Lyons #SelfTea campaign, which really broke new ground in 2015.

This easy to enter and highly engaging campaign encouraged users to submit selfies of themselves having their morning tea break for a chance to win a €100 One4All voucher.

Two key elements made this campaign work. The first was ease of entry. The second was that it was relate-able. The target market were used to having tea around the time the campaign ran, in the mid-morning. The act of supplementing that act with a simple selfie was not a big ask.

If you think that integrating user generated content could help your business achieve cut-through in what is a busy marketplace, here are some simple tips to keep in mind.


A very polished, studio based picture will be right for some platforms. Keep in mind that users will want to feel your product is accessible, has a personality and is for ‘people like me’.

Seeing others engage freely with your brand will open the flood gates. It builds loyalty and trust in your brand.


Your rewards don’t have to break the bank. In my experience, people don’t always react as well as you would think to big prizes. I have genuinely been involved in research where the public said that if they won a car, the first thing they would think about is the hassle of tax and insurance. Similarly with a holiday…”how am I going to get the time off work”.

Sometimes the best prize is the one that no-one else can get. A behind the scene experience at your business? The only branded iPad your company will ever make? The possibilities are endless.


People who do submit content are the people you can rely on to promote your brand. Engage with them. If their content is particularly strong, why not use them on an on-going basis? Why not ask for the rights to use their content on other platforms.

The person who makes your social media blow up, could well be that customer who only shows up once a month. They love your brand. You just don’t know it yet.

For help with strategies that will engage your users and help you build a strong digital presence, contact FCDM here.

User Generated Content

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