Why user-generated content can be bad for your business and how to handle it

Why user-generated content can be bad for your business and how to handle it

User-generated content (UGC) is any content created by consumers or customers that is shared on social media or other digital platforms.

This type of content can include photos, videos, reviews, blog posts, and more.

It’s one of the most powerful marketing tools for brands looking to increase their reach and engagement with potential customers.

User-generated content (UGC) can be an invaluable source of content for businesses.

It can help build brand awareness, attract new customers, and engage existing customers.

But what happens when user-generated content is negative?

Let’s discuss everything in this article:

What Is User-Generated Content?

User-generated content (UGC) is any type of content that’s created by people who are not professional creators but are part of your target audience. They could be current customers or potential customers.

This type of content could include photos, videos, reviews, blog posts, or any other form of digital media that people share online.

The key difference between UGC and traditional marketing content is that it’s created by real people — not professional marketers or advertisers — which makes it seem more authentic and relatable to consumers.

There are a few different types of user-generated content:

• Social media posts: 

This type of UGC includes posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms. It could be in the form of a tweet about how much someone loves your product or a photo on Instagram of someone using your product in their everyday life.

• Reviews: 

Reviews are a great way to get honest feedback from customers and build trust with potential customers. A positive review can go a long way in building brand loyalty and credibility with your target audience.

• Blog posts: 

Many brands use influencers to create blog posts about their products or services. This type of UGC can help reach new audiences as well as build relationships with potential customers who may be interested in learning more about your brand.

• Videos: 

Video content is one of the most popular types of user-generated content because it allows consumers to show off their creativity and engagement with your product or service in an entertaining way. 

Whether it’s a product review video on YouTube or an Instagram story featuring your product, videos can be a great way to engage with potential customers and build brand awareness.

Why Is User-Generated Content Important?

User-generated content is becoming increasingly important for businesses due to its ability to drive engagement and reach new audiences online.

Here are some key benefits of using user-generated content:

• Authenticity: 

User-generated content has been proven to be more authentic than traditional marketing messages because it comes from real people who have actually used the product or service being promoted. 

This helps build trust with potential customers because they feel like they are getting an honest review from someone like them instead of a message from the company itself.

• Reach New Audiences: 

By leveraging user-generated content in your marketing strategy, you can reach new audiences who may be interested in learning more about your brand but don’t yet know about you. 

This type of content has been found to be more effective at driving engagement than traditional ads because it feels more authentic and relatable to viewers who can see themselves using the product or service being promoted.

• Cost Savings: 

Creating traditional advertising campaigns can be expensive for businesses due to costs such as hiring actors for commercials or creating visuals for print ads. 

User-generated content requires little investment from businesses since consumers are creating the content themselves without pay! 

This saves businesses time and money while still helping them reach new audiences online through engaging stories shared by real people who have used their products or services before.

Is user-generated content always a good idea? Nope!

User-generated content (UGC) is any type of content created by users, such as reviews, ratings, comments, and videos.

It’s commonly used by brands to promote products or services and engage with customers.

UGC can also be used to create a sense of community around a brand by allowing customers to interact with each other in a social media setting.

User-generated content is considered valuable because it’s more authentic than branded content.

However, not all user-generated content is positive or helpful for businesses.

Reasons why user-generated content can be bad for your business

1. It Can Be Negative

Negative user-generated content can be damaging to a business’s reputation.

If users post negative reviews or comments about your product or service, it can hurt customer trust and loyalty in your brand.

It’s important that businesses monitor user-generated content on their own pages as well as on other websites and social media platforms in order to respond quickly to any negative feedback.

2. It Can Be Misleading

User-generated content can sometimes be misleading if the users posting it don’t provide accurate information about the product or service they are commenting on.

For example, if a user posts an unfavorable review without providing any context or explanation of why they had a negative experience with the product or service, their review could mislead other users into thinking the product or service isn’t good when that may not be the case at all.

3. It Can Lack Context

User-generated content can also lack context when it comes to the product or service being discussed.

This can lead to confusion among readers if they don’t have enough information about the product or service being reviewed in order to make an informed decision about whether it’s right for them or not.

4. It Can Be Manipulated by Competitors

If a competitor of yours posts false reviews about your product or service on your page or on other websites and social media platforms, this could lead to potential customers becoming less interested in buying from you due to their perceptions of your company being affected by this false information which was manipulated by your competitor.

5. It Can Spread Misinformation Quickly

Lastly, user-generated content can spread misinformation quickly due to its viral nature on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook where messages are shared with thousands of people within seconds.

This means that if one person spreads false information about your company through UGC it could potentially reach hundreds of thousands of people before you even have time to respond and correct any misinformation that was shared about your business.

How do you protect yourself from bad UGC?

User generated content (UGC) is an important part of any marketing strategy.

It provides a way to engage with your audience and encourage them to become more invested in your brand.

But there’s one major problem: UGC can be bad.

It can be negative, offensive, or just plain wrong. And when it is, it can have a major impact on your brand’s reputation.

So how do you protect yourself from bad UGC? Let’s take a look at some best practices that you can use to reduce the risk of bad UGC and keep your brand safe.

1. Understand what kind of UGC is acceptable

The first step to protecting yourself from bad UGC is to understand what kind of UGC is acceptable for your brand.

Do you want people to post reviews? Photos? Videos? All of the above?

Decide what types of UGC you’re comfortable with, and set clear guidelines for what’s acceptable and what’s not.

For example, if you don’t want people posting videos containing profanity, make sure that’s made clear in your guidelines.

Once you understand what kinds of content are acceptable for your brand, you can start developing rules to ensure that all posts meet those standards and protect your brand’s image.

2. Monitor Your Social Media Accounts

Monitoring your social media accounts regularly is essential for catching and removing bad UGC quickly.

You should review all posts on a regular basis – ideally daily – to ensure that no inappropriate content slips through the cracks.

When monitoring posts, make sure to check not only the comments section but also other areas where UGC might be posted such as reviews or photos/videos shared by followers on Instagram or Twitter.

If possible, set up notifications so that you can be alerted whenever a new post appears on any of your social media accounts. This will help you respond quickly if any offensive or inappropriate content appears on one of your accounts.

3. Respond Quickly

Once you’ve identified a piece of bad UGC, it’s important to respond quickly and take action as soon as possible.

Depending on the severity of the post, this could mean deleting it immediately or sending a polite message asking the poster to remove it themselves if they feel it violates the guidelines set out by your brand (or any other platform they posted it on).

Make sure that anyone responding to such posts is familiar with the company’s policies so they can handle each situation appropriately and professionally.

That way, potential customers don’t think you’re not paying attention to their worries. Be sure to handle the situation well, or else it could become even more unpleasant.

4. Educate Your Followers

Education is key when it comes to protecting yourself from bad UGC. The more informed people are about your company’s standards for user-generated content, the less likely they are to post something inappropriate or offensive online.

Consider creating educational materials such as blog posts or videos outlining the types of content you’re looking for from followers and how they should go about submitting their own posts in order to be approved by moderators/brand representatives etc… 

This will help ensure everyone understands what kind of content is acceptable for submission and could prevent any unwanted posts from appearing in the future

5. Create Moderation Guidelines

The last thing you should do when protecting yourself from bad UGC is to create moderation guidelines for moderating user-generated content before it goes live on any platform associated with your brand (including social media accounts). 

These guidelines should include criteria such as the language used (no profanity), subject matter (no political topics), and tone (post must be positive). 

They should also include information about how long it will take for submitted content to be reviewed before being approved for posting online.

6. Avoid Engaging with Trolls & Spammers

Another way you can protect yourself from bad UGC is by avoiding engaging with trolls & spammers who are purposely trying to spread false information about your company online for personal gain. 

The best way to do this is by simply ignoring these types of people altogether as engaging with them only gives them more attention which will only encourage them more.

7. Create Your Own Content

Creating your own high-quality & relevant content related to the product/service you offer through blogs, videos, webinars, etc., will also help protect you from bad UGC as potential customers will have access to accurate & helpful information directly from you which should help them make better decisions when considering making a purchase from you.

These guidelines will help ensure that everyone involved in moderating user-generated content understands exactly what needs to happen before something goes live online – whether that’s through social media channels, website comments sections, etc. This will help reduce the chances of anything inappropriate making its way onto any platform associated with your brand.


User-generated content can be an invaluable asset when used correctly but if not managed properly it can have serious consequences for brands that aren’t prepared for dealing with negative feedback or offensive material posted online. 

To protect yourself from these kinds of issues make sure you understand what kinds of user-generated content are appropriate for your brand and monitor all platforms associated with it regularly. 

Respond quickly to educate users about accepted standards create moderation guidelines and take action whenever something inappropriate appears online. Following these steps will help keep your brand safe from potential damage caused by bad user-generated content.