3 Attributes of Consumer-Generated Content to be Impactful
First, we need to define what consumer-generated content is. Consumer-generated content, commonly abbreviated as CGC, refers to materials that are created and uploaded to any Internet sites by nonprofessionals. CGC can be represented in the form of online testimonials, testimonials, product reviews and even consumer-generated ads such as commercials.
In this consumer-driven market, of the available consumer-generated content on the Internet, online reviews have become consumers’ “go-to” source for product quality and reliability confirmation. These consumer reviews can either have a direct or indirect effect on consumers’ purchasing decisions on a product or service. As consumers grow to become more critical and skeptical about the products and/or services they purchase, consumers tend to seek out different sources of consumer reviews or comments.
There are several reasons why consumer-generated content can impact on an individual’s decision-making process. In this blog, we are going to highlight the top 3 attributes that CGC should have to be impactful:
This type of review would have a complete evaluation of the details of a product. Sometimes, usefulness and helpfulness may overlap in its meaning. The main difference here is between a person and a review. Online reviews, which is content generated by users or consumers, are deemed useful when the “story” narrated in the review is relatable and it discusses details that often are missed out. For example, if someone were to rate a product with not so favorable ratings due to external factors such as shipping, consumers who are in the decision-making process may not find this information useful. However, if a consumer is more particular about services such as shipping, then he/she may find this piece of information useful. Describing one’s experience in using the product or service would be perceived as useful since it allows prospective users to understand how it is like if they were to purchase the product/service and use it.
This adjective “helpful” is something that you may see in review sites. Amazon.com and Yelp.com have an option for users to evaluate whether a reviewer is helpful or not. Look at the last statement in the screenshot below “Was this review helpful to you?”. It has been a discussion that the Vine program has rewarded top rated reviewers who have been evaluated as being “helpful” for their contributed comments. An example of an Amazon.com review:
What is credibility? This is very similar to the notion of being a thought leader. Being a thought leader means that an individual has established him/herself with are trustworthy comments/feedbacks. An individual’s credibility is built on a long stretch of trustworthy content. The content (e.g. feedback, comments), needs to be backed up with evidence when he/she claims or provide an opinion. It is assumable that content that is very descriptive and detailed are perceived as more helpful, therefore establishing credibility.
Now you have it, three important attributes a piece of CGC should do to help improve your company’s content marketing. What have your experience been when you contribute content for a company as a consumer/user? Share your thoughts by tweeting or in the comment box below!