User Generated Content is the King of Mobile Engagement Goals

Why does social media have so much power and have such impact when it comes to content sharing? For the same reason why people heavily trust peer reviews of products on Amazon and feedback ratings on eBay, people value and trust, recommendations from their peers, over the words of companies and media.

People look to others for a sense of reassurance and validation from people like themselves. In fact, this sense of connection has been a driving force in the success of crowdsourcing and the harnessing of user generated content (UGC) in driving consideration and product sales. The growth of crowdsourcing and UGC has created a new channel allowing audiences to change their role from onlookers to participants. It’s about multi-channel dialogue now, and to succeed, companies and media outlets need to empower their fans to be a part of the experience.

Content sharing has evolved in recent years as well. As newer smartphones showcase better camera technology, consumers are responding by creating and sharing better content with friends and family. Instagram, Viddy, YouTube, Pinterest represent just a handful of companies who have skyrocketed to success based on sharing user generated content.

With content sharing tools and drive at an all time high, of course, smart marketers are taking another look at UCG programs.  The problem with most of them is that they either require too much work on the participant’s part, or the program drives awareness but doesn’t convert into sales.  Text message marketing is changing this.

Many companies have realized the high response and conversion rates from text message marketing, but did you know that this medium is also perfect for supporting user generated content programming.  Text marketing allows your audience to receive your branded messages and content, but they can also text in images and messages to create a multi-channel level of engagement.

These text message campaigns are also known as “MO” campaigns, meaning “mobile-originated” messages. And they are so easy!  The mobile user can text an image and/or message to a short code.  The image/text populates a dashboard that a brand can moderate, or it can automatically be public by posting to a web gallery or scrolling text feed. MO text message programs are the easiest way to receive content from a user; they do not need Internet, require a data plan or even a mobile app. The participant just needs a mobile phone that can take pictures and the ability to text message.

How news media can use MO programming: 

A perfect example of how news media outlets can deepen relationships with their audiences through MO was launched last week to coincide with Superstorm Sandy. The purpose of this program was to enable people to share their perspective of what was going on their local area. And it worked well. Hundreds of thousands of those affected only had connectivity through basic mobile phone functions, since many areas were without power, Wi-Fi, and computers. To give those people a way to stay connected with their friends and family as well as tell their story to the world at large, Mogreet created a user generated online gallery called SandyUpdate.com. This generated was a live feed of images created by people texting in the photos of the storm unfolding around them.

The results were fantastic.  Within 12 hours, more than 200 images were texted in (with no promotion of the site other than social channels).  These images were used by local and national press to round out stories of the destruction of Superstorm Sandy with imagery.  For those on the ground, Sandyupdate.com allowed their voices to be heard and their pain to be seen.

sandy text storm mobile

Prefer user generated text instead of images? MO campaigns can be used for receiving simple text messages too. Instead of having people log into their twitter app or mobile website to tweet using a specific hashtag, using a MO campaign, you can simply ask the audience to text-in their comments to a shortcode. . This can be viewed in a feed and also moderated too. Fox’s hit talent show, X Factor, used MO text messaging to let fans submit questions to their favorite contestants.

x factor fox mobile text

There are endless possibilities for how broadcasters can use MO campaigns to drive awareness, encourage engagement or deepen loyalty.  Imagine creating deeper engagement around high school sports coverage with MO campaigns featuring Friday night football games, sponsored by a local car dealership? Or drive interactions through polls on topics and issues relevant to your local community?  By providing ways for viewers to engage with stations, broadcasters build loyalty and repeat tune-ins driving higher revenues and generating buzz unlike any other medium!

In upcoming articles, we will cover how brands, and developers can use mobile originated text message campaigns.

Can you think of a way to use this text message communication channel?

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About Mogreet
With all of the clutter and confusion about mobile marketing and MMS message marketing on the internet, this blog is to help you with news and tips in mobile marketing. About Mogreet We help brands & agencies communicate via mobile messaging - in vibrant video, images, & audio MMS. Text MMS to 21534 for a live MMS demo. Msg&Data rates may apply.

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