By Louise Donkor, Welocalize Research and Content Marketer
The force of user-generated content (UGC) has arrived and shows no signs of slowing down. Users everywhere have an opinion and want the whole world to know it. Sometimes the whole world listens, thanks to “going viral”. For a company, localizing UGC is the chance to get your brand out there on a global scale and the rewards can be staggering in terms of brand awareness.
Here are five of the most tempting reasons why organizations should localize UGC:
- Let people around the world know what is being said about you. Good reviews of your brand are a huge benefit. The truth is that potential customers are more likely to listen to what other people have to say about your brand than what you have to say. Allowing potential customers from all over the world to see the excellent things said about your brand from other customers will reinforce your brand’s association with a positive feeling. When reviews and opinions about your brand are good, then your reputation will sky rocket and hopefully this will translate into profitable returns.
- Attract the global community. When your UGC is localized, it means that more people all over the world can read it. Your market is expanding and so will your customers. With the help of the Internet, it is very easy and cost-effective to project your brand to the world. Localizing UGC helps to get yourself noticed in other countries, in a voice they understand, expanding your client network. Attracting the global community will also create a community within your brand. As your customers are able to interact with each other despite different languages and cultures, your brand as the thing that unites them will come out on top. Having your own “global” community for your brand creates the best type of publicity.
- Increase your profits. Having a wider pool of people who will want to purchase your product or service can increase your profits. Expanding geographies and opening market share are key initiatives for most growing companies. Globalization is the key. Customers will feel more comfortable when they can understand what other users are saying about your brand and will therefore feel more comfortable engaging with you overall. Do not underestimate the power of customers interacting together. As Christian Zeh mentioned in his blog, Challenges of Localizing UGC and Social Media, consumer reviews are the second most trusted form of advertising after word-of-mouth. Reviews are essentially the digital version of word-of-mouth. Although potential customers may not personally know the reviewer, they will engage and relate them as another customer, perhaps as someone impartial. When your reviews are good and users can read this in their native language, revenue should demonstrate a positive return on your UGC localization efforts.
- One-up the competition. Your competitors may have not jumped onto the UGC localization bandwagon yet. There is time to act NOW. The sooner you localize UGC, the sooner you can attract the global community and instill your brand influence upon them. You are more likely to receive brand loyalty and trust as you have been around for longer. Also, the sooner you start localizing UGC, the better you will manage it over time. Your competitor may start and have some teething problems and by that time you will be a seasoned pro.
- Get with times. As globalization fast takes over the world, it is becoming a necessity to have UGC localized and if you don’t, you could lose out! It is not enough to just cater to the home crowd. It won’t keep you afloat when other companies have customers in tens of different countries all flocking to their website. Localizing UGC takes your website out of the dark ages and into a time where users can share thoughts and ideas regardless of culture or language. It’s what is happening now and it is to be expected. Several companies are using user-generated content to their advantages, growing the number of customers and increasing their profits with localized content. What is stopping you?
Based in the UK, Louise Donkor is a member of Welocalize’s Global Marketing and Sales Support Team.
Welocalize Director of Business Development, Christian Zeh, is presenting on the subject of UGC and localization at tekom and tcworld 2014, taking place in Stuttgart, Germany, November 11-13.