Published on 6th of July, 2022

Common Instagram User-generated Content Mistakes – And How to Avoid Them

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User-generated content (UGC) is a great way to turn your Instagram followers into brand advocates while also providing social proof. With the right strategy, you can use this content to build awareness, increase engagement, and drive conversions. However, if you use the wrong approach, you could actually harm your brand. Go over common user-generated content mistakes and find out how to avoid them. Then, you’ll be ready to develop a strategy to share this content with your audience. 


Failing to Ask Permission

red and grey Ask signage

Failing to ask permission before posting UGC is the No. 1 mistake that brands make. There is a myth that content uploaded to Instagram is public and free to use. That’s not true, though, so you need to ask permission before sharing user-generated content. 

Fortunately, it’s easy to avoid this mistake. Simply send the creator a DM asking if you can use the content. Most people are more than happy to let brands share their content. They just want to be asked first. 


Failing to Credit the Creator

Instagram users often think that once they get permission to post UGC, their work is done. They can post and benefit from it without any worries. However, failing to credit the original creator is a huge mistake that could turn off your followers. The original creator will likely be upset if you don’t give credit. Then, that person might mention it to others, creating a snowball effect that could harm your brand.

This is also simple to avoid. Tag the original creator on the post and link to his or her profile in the caption. Giving credit where credit is due will show your followers that you aren’t a content vulture. You won’t steal content to use for your own purposes. Instead, you always credit original creators when sharing content.  


Only Going With Perfect Photos

User-generated content is so powerful because it’s authentic. It showcases real customers instead of the brand. However, some brands have missed this memo and only share perfect content. The content has been edited to the point that it doesn’t look natural at all. While slick photos look great in advertisements, stick with natural-looking images for your user-generated content campaign. 


Only Showing UGC From a Specific Subset of Your Market

Some brands only show user-generated content that features a specific subset of their market. The content will resonate with that subset, but over time, others can become alienated. They wonder why the brand doesn’t feature UGC representing them, and they might end up unfollowing the account. 

Understanding your followers’ demographics can help you avoid this problem. Find out who you serve, and then share UGC equally. This will help you engage your entire audience instead of a select few. 


Failing to Repurpose the Content

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User-generated content is marketing gold. Unfortunately, lots of brands are guilty of using it once and then forgetting about it. They post it on Instagram and then move onto the next post without giving it any extra thought.

Avoid this problem by posting it on other networks as well. Show it off on Facebook, Twitter, and other networks, so you can get the most out of each piece of UGC. This will cause your engagement rates to spike and help you build brand awareness. Getting extra traction out of each piece of UGC will help your brand excel. 


Failing to Get Engagement

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User-generated content should create lots of engagement on your Instagram page. However, sometimes, people don’t notice the content and fail to engage. Then, brands miss an important opportunity to highlight their accounts. 

You can avoid this problem by ensuring that your UGC receives high levels of engagement. Buying Instagram likes can help you generate engagement immediately. As the likes increase, others will notice your content and engage with it as well. Then, the UGC can serve the intended purpose instead of disappearing on people’s feeds. 


Not Moderating the Comments

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When you increase engagement, you will notice that your content starts getting more comments. Don’t let trolls harass users in the comment section. This could cause your user-generated marketing campaign to derail and could also hurt your relationship with your followers. Pin a positive comment to the top of the section. Then, keep an eye out for new comments. If someone posts a harassing comment, delete it. Your comment section should be clean and free of harassment. Otherwise, people won’t want to submit user-generated content to your page. 


Posting the Same Content Over and Over

Some marketers post the same type of user-generated content over and over. They figure that as long as it works, they should continue to post it. However, the most successful brands think outside of the box and post different types of content. Come up with ways to become more creative when sharing user-generated content. By thinking outside of the box, you can boost your engagement levels quite a bit.   


Not Looking at Analytics

You should analyze analytics each time you run a campaign. That includes a campaign that focuses on user-generated content. Analytics will help you determine what works and what doesn’t. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean you should then focus on one type of user-generated content. You need to continue to mix it up to reach all demographics. However, the analytics will help you stop doing what doesn’t work, so you can focus on what does work. 


Create a User-generated Content Marketing Plan

Now that you know what to avoid, you’re ready to dive in and benefit from user-generated content. Come up with a plan to find the content. Once you find content, ask for permission to share it, and post it on your timeline. Buy Instagram likes to increase engagement, so your user-generated content will reach the masses. Keep an eye on your analytics to see how each piece of UGC performs. Then, adjust your strategy accordingly as you continue to share UGC.


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