User-generated Content: The Best Event Marketing Strategy
Events are incomplete without audience engagement. You want your audience to actively participate throughout the event, as that’s the indicator of how successful your event is. Especially in virtual and hybrid events when there are lesser one-on-one interactions.
Another indicator of event success is the amount of user generated content it manages to produce. When people like you, they talk about you on social media. Similarly, if they have a great time at your event, they will make sure to capture and share with their social contacts.
And that’s how the story of the best event marketing strategy, UGC, begins! Continue reading to know all that it takes to amplify your event’s performance with UGC.
What Is User-generated Content?
User-generated content is customer-centric, cost-effective, and the most authentic content you can find on the internet today. That’s because it comes from a transparent source, the consumers.
It offers event organizers the opportunity to promote their event and its social presence through their customers. It can be videos, photos, reviews, or anything; if your event attendees create it, you can collect and use it for various marketing purposes.
UGC is the best event marketing strategy because it evokes emotions, inspires consumers, and instils social proof.
Well, aren’t you feeling intrigued to know more? Keep reading and find out.
How Can User-Generated Content Elevate Your Events?
1. Shoot Up Ticket Sales & Conversions
User-generated content can play a huge role in your pre-event promotions. In fact, it can help you boost your ticket sales more than any other event marketing strategy. You can collect the content created by audience members eager to attend the event and reshare it on various marketing touchpoints.
Let your current audience tell your potential audience why they must attend your event. The prospects would find it more relatable and attractive than the flashy branded promotions, shooting up your ticket sales and improving the conversion rate like never before!
2. Social Media Campaigns Powered By UGC
92% of consumers trust organic, user-generated content (UGC) more than they trust traditional advertising.Nielsen Consumer Trust Index
When a user comes across a social media ad, they often ignore it or skip it thinking it is just another flashy branded ad. If you want to capture the attention of your target audience and create effective & result-driven social media campaigns, then user-generated content is your go-to.
When your target audience member is scrolling through social media, skipping the ads, your event’s social media campaign equipped with UGC will make them stop by and engage with the ad. The raw UGC will generate interest in them, and it will improve the social ad click-through rate to a great extent.
3. Instill Social Proof & Attract Audience
UGC is created by different people who have their way of expressing themselves, so it assures that you always have something unique to share with your audience. It can play a huge role in attracting social traffic because its authenticity will help your brand and event stand out.
Besides, when you use the content created by your audience members in your event campaigns, it will instill a sense of social proof in other audience members, encouraging them to create UGC for you. More UGC would mean a better social media presence for your event, attracting more social traffic towards your event.
How To Generate UGC In Events?
Before The Event
Create A Branded Hashtag For Your Event
If you want to collect UGC for your event, creating a branded, unique and memorable hashtag is the foremost thing to do. Start by promoting your event hashtag. Make sure to use it while doing any social media activity around your event. Your goal is to make your event hashtag visible enough for everyone to use while posting for your event.
You can even ask your event speakers or guests to do the same whenever they interact with their social contacts around your event. Better visibility of your branded hashtag would encourage more attendees to use it and create UGC around your event.
Create A Social Media Presence
Before the event begins, you can encourage the audience members who buy your event tickets to tell their social contacts about attending your event and why they should do the same. You can offer them free event goodies like t-shirts or mugs signed by the speaker or the artists at your event. It can be an Instagram story, a Facebook post, or a tweet; make sure they tag you while they do it.
Reshare this user-generated content on your social media handles and tag the audience members. It will instill social proof, encourage more posts, and become a great way to create free-of-cost promotions for your event.
Bring The Influencers On Board
90% of social media users follow influencers, and somehow their lifestyle decisions are also influenced by them. Why not leverage this power into generating UGC for your event? Influencers are trendsetters. Make sure to collaborate with the ones that would create maximum impact on your audience. They can create content around your event.
It can be a dance hook step or any other trend-worthy content like we see on TikTok or Instagram reels. You can post these user generated videos on your event’s social media pages and challenge your audience members to do the same. You will be surprised to see the amount of UGC you will manage to collect with this strategy.
During The Event
Organize Fun Hashtag Contests
Creating hashtag contests is the ultimate strategy to collect UGC for your event. Run a hashtag contest while your event is on the go. You can use your event’s unique hashtag and set certain guidelines on the kind of content you want from your audience. These guidelines can also become the deciding factor of choosing the winner of your hashtag contest.
To take things to the next level and ensure maximum audience participation, you can run the hashtag contest on the social wall at your event. It will instill social proof in your event attendees, leading to maximum UGC.
Run A Social Media Wall
A social media wall can be the best integration for your event if collecting maximum UGC is your ultimate goal. A social wall helps you to bring social media to your event in the form of a wall. Many social walls are auto-synced. It makes sure the latest social media posts reach your event audience, and they remain hooked and engaged throughout the event.
You can encourage your event attendees to use your event hashtag when they post on social media, and their posts will appear on the social wall. When your event attendees see their posts appear on the social wall, they will get impressed. It will encourage other event attendees to post, helping you generate a good amount of UGC throughout the event.
Create Capture-worthy Moments
The opportunities of generating UGC during the event are endless. You can install a photo booth at your event. If yours is a virtual event, then there are many virtual photo booth software available. You can even add filters and your brand logos to the pictures. The photo booth would act as a great prompter for your event audience to create UGC for you.
You can even offer a fan meet and greet, where the audience members can meet the speaker or the artist, click pictures with them and share them on their social media handles. Make sure to add elements in your event that would mesmerize the audience members, and they would surely want to share it with their friends and followers, creating more UGC for you.
After The Event
All your event efforts would mean nothing until you send a follow-up email to all your event attendees once the event has come to an end. You can add an e-swag bag to the email with discounts and vouchers.
Further, you can also add a link to the email that redirects them to a feedback page, Facebook review page, your website, or any other social media platform where they can share their experience at your event. Not just that, you can keep your audience members connected by reposting the UGC created by them, keeping their event memories fresh.
Types Of UGC Collected In Events
1. Employee-generated Content In Corporate Events
33% of employees will post messages, pictures, or videos about their employer without any encouragement from their company. That number increased to 50% with direct company encouragement.Weber Shandwick, in partnership with KRC Research
Organize ravishing corporate events and encourage employees to create content for you. It is a great strategy to enhance your company’s reach, attract prospects and improve your social media presence.
When you use employee-generated content as your corporate event marketing strategy, your employees feel like an important part of your company. It enhances their loyalty towards your company, and they are always ready to create content for you.
2. Visitor-generated Content in Trade Shows
Trade shows are an effective form of marketing for businesses looking for opportunities to exhibit their new products or services. Attendees have access to the latest technologies, features, exclusive prices, and much more. All your trade show visitors become your brand advocates as they capture your trade show from their eyes and share valuable insights with their social contacts.
Publish this visitor-generated content to give exposure to the companies exhibiting their newly introduced product or service. Not just that, it will allow you to build relationships, engage with the common users, create brand awareness, and generate leads.
3. Student-generated Content In Educational Events
Enhance knowledge-sharing, engagement, and student ideas by utilizing student-generated content at your educational events. When you use their content in your event marketing strategies, the students feel important. It instills social proof among your students to create more content for the educational event.
It improves your educational institute’s social media presence, reaches prospects, attracts more student enrollments, and much more.
4. Fans-generated Content In Sports League/Music Events/Festivals
Be it a sports event, a music event, or any other festival. It’s the fans that make an ordinary event an extraordinary one. That’s because they are always ready to share their love for their favorite icons. Repurpose this fan-generated content to share the fandom emotions among your audience.
It is a great strategy to evoke the emotions of potential attendees, boost ticket sales, and maximize audience engagement throughout the event.
More than 86% of companies today use user-generated content as part of their marketing strategy.Forbes
That’s because it is powerful and holds the capacity to single-handedly captivate, engage and convert the audience.
Talking about event marketing, the real driving source of any event is its attendees, and with UGC as your armor, you can be assured of the ultimate success.