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Leveraging User-Generated Content to Build Your Brand

Did you know that 84% of people insist that they trust what a friend or loved one says about a brand before trusting the brand itself? 

In the fast-paced world of marketing, staying ahead of the competition requires more than just fancy visuals and catchy taglines. To truly take your brand to new heights, it’s time to tap into the goldmine of user-generated content (UGC). You can utilize UGC to build your brand while keeping it relevant in the process.

UGC: What’s the Buzz?

We’ve all seen them – the sponsored GRWM (Get Ready With Me) videos featuring a woman spilling the tea about her weekend run-in with her ex-fiance’s new girlfriend while she walks through her skin care routine right before rushing out the door to grab the latest Starbucks fall drink. 

User-generated content enhances modern marketing. This type of content is created by your own audience including photos, videos, reviews and stories that your customers share about your brand voluntarily. 

In the aviation world, this can range from thrilling cockpit shots to heartfelt passenger testimonials.

Why UGC for Aviation?

  1. Authenticity at its Best: In an industry where safety and trust are paramount, UGC adds a genuine touch to your brand. Real stories and experiences resonate far more than any carefully scripted advertisement. Which one is more believable to you:
    • a brand touting how amazing it is – OR –
    • watching your peer’s video demonstration of a brand with their honest opinions explained in the most relatable way 
  1. An Engagement Boost: User-generated content is social media’s best friend. It encourages interaction, comments, shares, and likes, to help amplify your brand’s reach. All of this allows your brand to see what people are truly curious about, and what they’re saying about your brand outside of the conversations that you create. 
  1. Cost-Effective: This type of content works for you. Instead of producing costly in-house content, you can let your customers create it for you, often at no cost.
  1. Humanizing Your Brand: Aviation might be considered a more high-tech industry, but it’s also about people. UGC puts faces and stories behind the machines, making your brand more relatable.

Get Started:

  1. Create a Hashtag Strategy: Encourage users to share their aviation experiences under a unique and catchy hashtag. Think #FlyWithUs or #WingsOfAdventure. This helps you easily track and share their already-created content.
  1. Showcase Their Work on Your Website: By featuring user-generated content prominently on your website, you add social proof and portray how real people are loving your brand. Also, your creators will appreciate the extra visibility. 
  1. Engage and Reward: Engage with users who share content related to your brand. People love it when their favorite brand acknowledges their content. It shows that you actually care about the experience your audience is having with your product. A simple “Thank you” or open-ended question can go a long way. Another idea might be to run contests or giveaways to incentivize content creation.
  1. Monitor and Moderate: Keep an eye on what’s being shared. While most UGC is positive, it’s essential to moderate content to ensure it aligns with your brand’s values and guidelines.
  1. Tell Stories: Don’t just repost these pieces randomly. Use the posts to tell stories about your brand. Share the journey of a satisfied customer or the behind-the-scenes adventures of your crew.

A Cleared-For-Takeoff Brand

User-generated content can be the fuel that sends your brand flying. By harnessing the power of your customers’ voices, you can build trust, authenticity, and engagement in a way that traditional marketing methods just can’t match.

Need help coming up with ideas? Our team is here to help. Contact us today to get started.

Take 5 With Chaney

What would a marketing agency be without the creative juices flowing from the minds of brilliant designers? We are incredibly lucky to have Senior Digital Art Director Chaney Kimball on our team at Greteman Group. Here is a little background behind the man responsible for so many of the incredible designs that have come from our agency:

What initially drew you to a career in digital art and design?

Funny thing, I wanted to be a sports physical therapist, but being awful at Algebra and Chemistry forced me out of that major. I always loved album covers, magazines, sports logos and uniforms. My cousin was a graphic designer and after talking to him, I decided on graphic design.

Who has inspired you along your professional journey?

My cousin Chris Deschaine, who started his own design business in Chicago, was a major influence. He taught me about the real-world part of graphic design, things you don’t learn in school. In my early twenties, I was his web guy. I’d fly to Chicago, have meetings with clients, work on projects and explore the city. I was very lucky to have that experience.

Another is one of my all-time favorite designers, former business partner and best man at my wedding, Chris Parks. I think confidence is often overlooked, but has tremendous power. He was always there, inflating my ego and giving me the confidence to do things I never thought I could.

Last but not least, Sonia. Having a creative powerhouse at the top of a company is such a blessing. She gives designers the opportunity to present ideas and concepts that would never see the light of day in other agencies. She really listens and wants to know the thinking behind your designs. Sonia also has one of the best eyes for design I’ve ever been around.

What is your favorite thing about your role at Greteman Group, so far?

Creative freedom and the variety of work makes it interesting and very rewarding. I also enjoy sharing my knowledge with young professionals and listening to them. It helps me keep a pulse on today’s designs and platforms. And of course, I appreciate working with people who work hard.

What has been the most surprising thing that you’ve learned in your career?

Probably the same for a lot of people my age – how fast things change, but also stay the same. We’re still using GIFs, who would have guessed that?!

For those considering a career in digital art and design, what piece of wisdom would you like to share?

Do what you love, take risks when you can. Work with people you like and respect. Try to push the envelope and inject your personality into concepts and designs. Have fun and don’t take yourself too seriously.