Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) are closing in quickly. In recent years in the USA, online spending over the course of the two days has entered the billions and shows no signs of slowing down. 2019’s BFCM digital sales are expected to be the biggest money makers yet.
However, if you’re going to take advantage of this incredible spending period, you have to be sufficiently prepared. And, as we’ve discussed at length, user-generated content (UGC) is the best way to get consumers interested in buying your products – and to convert them once they are on a product page. With this crucial marketing component in mind, this is your Black Friday Cyber Monday guide to User Generated Content.
1. Plan Ahead For The Sale Period
This one might seem obvious, but it’s nonetheless crucial and often left too late. You have to plan ahead. That means having everything in place in regards to your UGC. When BFCM arrives, all your potential customers should see a plethora of UGC and be more likely to buy as a result.
Just getting started a month before the big day? We’ve got you covered. Our suite of UGC eCommerce tools can be set up in no time, and offer everything you need to get started: shoppable Instagram pages, product page UGC galleries, and a Digital Rights Management solution.
You want as much visual UGC as possible. Don’t feel like you have enough to go on right now? Run a pre-holiday season Instagram contest to gather as much visual UGC as possible. Simply have your customers share pictures of your merchandise with a unique hashtag and offer prizes for the best pictures.
Reviews should also be on your roadmap to a successful BFCM. According to our friends at Okendo, 95% of shoppers read reviews before purchasing. Encourage reviews via email, social media, and loyalty programs. Incentivize through discounts, coupons, shared reviews on social media, or the opportunity to win prizes. Make your customers want to leave reviews. Moreover, make reviewing easy. An automated email sequence will take the work out of review collection. One less thing to think about for BFMC!
2. Inspire and Keep Engaged
We’ve covered how to get started. Already rely on UGC? User-generated content is something that requires continual maintenance. In the case of BFCM will need to be especially finely tuned. As such, you have to continue the hard work you’ve been doing with your UGC and keep your users inspired and engaged with your brand and products.
As mentioned above, reviews and visual content are crucial. To encourage customers to engage with both, ensure visual content posting is rewarded. Leaving a review should be easy and intuitive for your shoppers. Don’t forget contesting and don’t be afraid to ask for your community to take action.
In addition, be sure to keep up with your community. Regularly review @tagged social posts from your customers. Continue using hashtags. You may even come up with new hashtags that are holiday/sales themed if necessary. If you do use a new hashtag, consider something that can live on past the holiday season like #yourbrandwishlist.
Lastly, don’t forget the basics. That means sharing, liking, commenting on, and displaying UGC in your social feed and online so that your many users feel valued and motivated to continue generating content for you.
3. Don’t Forget Gifting
Since we are on the topic of appreciating your community – don’t forget gifting! While BFCM have traditionally been about customers buying for themselves, the sale period is increasingly becoming a time for gift purchase. As such, be sure emphasize the gifting options on your website and ensure they are easily accessible. Don’t hide your gifting category three layers in your navigation but include it prominently in your header navigation.
In turn, ensure your gift guide has several guided options for easy buying. We like to see items at different price points (Under $20, Under $50, etc.) along with gender at a minimum. WooCommerce has a complete guide summarizing how to make your store holiday shopper ready.
Social proof and reviews are also crucial for gift givers. How is Uncle Joe supposed to know the latest trends without UGC photos? How can Mom know which of the bedding sets will last without reviews?