Proof user-generated content works for finance brands

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Hand over the reins
By Rachel Lobley, contributor. 20 September, 2018
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User-generated content is a powerful thing. Having proven to be ultra-effective and super-cheap, it has long been the tactic of choice for retailers, travel brands and the fashion industry. But for finance brands with tight compliance regulations, handing over the reins to customers can be problematic.

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As social media becomes increasingly important in purchase decisions (74% of shoppers make buying decisions based on social media) user-generated content is too good to ignore.

Uploaded by genuine fans of the brand, rather than paid partners or influencers, user-generated content creates a genuine personal connection between a brand and its customers.

This personal connection is key as it encourages brand trust. The stats don’t lie – 68% of millennials say that user-generated content is generally a good indicator of the quality of a brand or service. 88% of consumers trust online reviews written by other consumers as much as they trust recommendations from their personal contacts.

68% of millennials say that user-generated content is generally a good indicator of the quality of a brand or service.

The finance brands doing it well

Santander curated user-generated videos for its Prosperity campaign. Leveraging the emotions and humour of real-life, the bank compiled short clips demonstrating what ‘prosperity’ means for its customers. The result is a heart-warming and impactful campaign that raised brand image and communications awareness.

Santander - Prosperity from The Engine Group on Vimeo.

Santrander user-generated content

 

My Mint Moment

Financial planning app, Mint made user-generated content the basis of a competition. They asked their social media followers to post a moment they saved up for featuring the hashtag #mymintmoment - the brand received thousands of applications with beautiful pictures and heartfelt stories. The winner received a $1,000 gift card to fund their dream, and Mint received some fantastic free coverage on social media.

Mint user-generated content

Limiting your risk

For risk-averse finance brands there are plenty of tips to help you test the water with user-generated content:

  1. Find yourself a great social media management platform that will allow you to monitor any posted content that mentions your brand. Make sure your social media team is equipped with your brand guidelines and can assess content in real time.
  2. Be specific in your requirements for user-generated content. If it’s a competition, make sure the terms and conditions are tight. Provide clear examples of the types of submissions you are expecting to see – you may choose to engage with influencers to create these.
  3. Make sure you are clear about your brand values and social media guidelines – if content doesn’t align with your business’ values, reserve the right to remove it.
  4. Finally, if you’re going to make user-generated content part of a campaign, make sure you know exactly who is featured in it – do background checks on everyone in the content to avoid any nasty surprises.

Which channels suit user-generated content best?

User-generated content often takes the form of photos, videos or reviews. This makes social media channels like Instagram and Facebook the perfect home. These channels also play to your biggest creators of user-generated content – millennials. Those aged 25 and above are the biggest content drivers — contributing over 70% of all user-generated content.

Related articles

- Finance brands act now or say bye bye bye to millennials
- Reddit: How finance brands can get closer to customers

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A specialist in marketing strategy, Rachel has worked on consultancy, content and PR projects for a number of international finance and insurance brands out of London. Now in Australia, Rachel enjoys producing strategic content for the Aussie market and getting to know her new surroundings. When not at work, she's out enjoying restaurants and attempting to do some exercise.