When we think about Consumer-Generated Content (CGC), also known as User-Generated Content (UGC), we tend to think of examples that really work for B2C marketing efforts. As we've discussed before, CGC is any kind of unpaid content created by your customers in promotion of your brand, rather than by your own marketing team. This is the type of content that can be shared widely across social media, such as photos and videos, or can just as easily be review site or product testimonials. Essentially, CGC turns your brand's valued customers into content creators and brand ambassadors.
It's a marketing strategy that is seen as trustworthy due to the authenticity of the content, but how can this translate to a B2B audience? Below we offer some tips to bring CGC to B2B companies.
1. Success Stories
Your happiest customers should be happy to share their success stories with your audience. Reach out to your most valued customers and ask if they'd be willing to talk about their journey with your company. This can be through a variety of methods, but popular strategies include:
- Testimonials - this is the easiest way to show what your customers are saying about you. You can amass a large number of brief testimonials from a wide variety of customers to share across social media channels and promote on your website's homepage.
- Case studies - write an in-depth case study about a specific customer journey. You can post these on your website or share them with potential new customers for lead generation.
- Podcast or Video - record a podcast session or video with your customers where they can vocalise their real-life experience of working with your brand. You can promote your podcast on your social media platforms and on your website.
2. Review Sites
While B2B companies probably don't have a product to take a cool photo of for Instagram or a product to review on Amazon, it can be easy to forget that online review sites such as Yelp, Trustpilot and Google Reviews aren't just for B2C customers to voice their opinions on. While they may gain a higher number of reviews due to their wider breadth of customers, having a high score on these sights can be just as important for B2B businesses. Research from Harvard Business School has shown that every one-star increase on a review site leads to a 5-9% increase in revenue, and this applies to all companies, regardless of their audience. If you have a review page or people are Googling your company, it's important not to neglect your rating. Your review score matters, so leverage your happy customers to make sure that they are advocating for your brand where it counts. And when a customer leaves a great review, share it in a tweet or LinkedIn post as another company testimonial!
3. Poll or Survey
Taking a pulse of your customers' experiences not only gives you wide insights into how you're performing but also gives you ample content to share across your content marketing channels. Imagine the influence of being able to say "95% of our customers rate us as their most valued service provider" in your sales brochures, on your social media channels, and on your website. With a survey, you can also record testimonials from your customers in open-ended questions that can then be shared across channels apart from the analysis. B2B marketers and sales teams should be able to have a field day with the positive results of this kind of customer survey!
Whether you are hosting an event or attending a trade show or conference, this is a great way to interact with your target audience. There are a lot of opportunities to get creative with your engagement. You can create a hashtag for the event and get people engaged via Twitter or other social media platforms and re-share any posts engaging with it from your brand's account. Having cool and different takeaways from your stand or booth can also be a great way to get people talking about your brand.
5. Thought Leadership & Customer Guest Bloggers
Reach out to customers with interesting backstories or experiences to generate a piece of content on your behalf. Employ them as guest bloggers to write on a topic of their own expertise that is directly or tangentially related to their work with your brand. This may be a slight divergence from the content you traditionally share but introduces you to an entirely new audience. Especially if they are influencers in their industry, getting them to speak on your behalf could be really fruitful. This will be particularly valuable when shared across their LinkedIn page as well as your company's own.
CX Index Social Advocate™
Our Social Advocate tool automates the process of turning your most satisfied customers into online brand advocates. The tool enables you to better engage with your customers to drive authentic positive content from customer feedback onto popular review and social media platforms. It has an incredibly strong track record of enhancing online reputation in both the quality and quantity of reviews. You can download a brochure to learn more HERE.