I recently read an email from Cat Johnson that caught my attention. It mentioned a study that found that 74% of people prefer to see previous customers’ photos and videos on brand and retailer websites rather than professionally-shot images. It also said that people were more likely to buy if they were able to view photo and video content from previous customers.
[TL;DR]: people really like user-generated content, and it’s influential in their purchase decisions.
As a coworking space operator, this means you should be focusing on sharing content either created by your members or featuring your members.
It builds trust, spotlights your community in a deeper way (for more on why that’s important, click here), and offers authentic social proof. It also helps make members feel like even more a part of your community.
And this is incredibly good news for you as a coworking space operator.
Because you have access to an abundance of this type of user-generated/member-centric content (henceforth referred to as member-generated content or MGC, for our purposes).
It’s actually kinda beautiful.
So, the big question becomes how to get MGC that you can share on your social channels.
6 ways for coworking spaces to get more MGC
Here’s a good thought to get us started: you’ve got way easier and more direct access to your members than most companies do to their customers. Also, the fact that you have an engaged community working next to you every day is going to make MGC a lot easier to acquire.
Here are six ideas for how to do it.
(Disclaimer: this list is in no way comprehensive so don’t be afraid to get creative with your approach!)
1. Just ask
Realistically, the easiest and most direct way for you to get MGC is to simply ask for it. Ask your members to send you photos or videos of them in your space or to tag you when they share content in your workspace. You can also ask for content related to their business that you can share, such as wins that you can profile on your social media to support and promote your members.
2. Hire a photographer
Bring in a photographer to shoot your space and the people in it. Let members know you’re doing this and ask their permission to share photos of them on social media and tag them.
3. Create a brand hashtag
Start utilizing a hashtag for your brand. Ideally, this would be the name of your space. Then, you would use it on every piece of social content you share and encourage your members to use the same hashtag when posting about their time in your space or when it comes to things to do with their business.
4. Run a contest
Incentivize your members to post MGC by running a contest where they stand to win something like a free lunch for their team or a discount on a future month’s membership fees.
To enter the contest, all they need to do is post a photo at your space and tag you. Then, draw a winner at random at the end of the month.
Rinse and repeat as necessary.
5. Make your space photo-worthy
If you want people to take and share photos and videos in your space, it needs to be photo and video-worthy.
This could be a staple piece of artwork or a seating area that’s visually appealing or even a designated photo booth.
It should also be unique to your space.
Whatever it is, make sure you give people something to post about.
6. Collect reviews from members
MGC isn’t limited to photos and videos. Member reviews count too. In fact, 91% of people aged 18 to 34 trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. So, collect reviews and share them on your social media. For Instagram, consider turning them into an image you can share.
Pro tip: Being tagged doesn’t necessarily give you permission to repost MGC. Always ask for permission first.
The opportunities to get MGC are endless. It can be something as simple as having a “bring your dog to work” day and taking photos of members with their pups, or something as involved as offering a value-add service like doing professional headshots and then featuring members on your social media on an ongoing basis.
But one thing’s for sure: with a little creativity, you can use Member-Generated Content to help supercharge your chances of converting prospects into members.
I work with coworking operators from across North America to craft social media content that helps achieve their goals. If you’d like to learn more about how I can help you, or if you’re interested in bringing on some help with your social media, get in touch with me today.
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