What is User-Generated Content and Why is it Winning?
Have you ever posted a picture of a product you bought on social media? It could be a pair of new shoes or an unboxing video of a new makeup product. Whatever the product, if you post about it, you are creating user-generated content.
User-generated content (UGC) or consumer-generated content is original, brand-specific content. These include pictures, videos, reviews, or even a podcast. Consumers create and publish these on social media. Let's explore what UGC is, where it comes from, and why it's important for brands.
What is UGC?
UGC is content created about a product or service from a person rather than the brand itself. It can come in many forms. These include images, videos, blog posts, reviews, testimonials, live streams, or podcasts. UGC comes from customers, brand loyalists, employees, and content creators on social media.
You've most likely seen a UGC social post or video while scrolling through your social feed. A friend of yours may have posted a picture of the new clothes they got. Or a content creator published a new YouTube video reviewing a product you like. Whatever the content type, if it comes from an individual rather than the brand, it is UGC.
Why is user-generated content important to brands?
Relevancy. UGC is important for brands. It is relevant throughout every phase of a consumer's purchasing journey. Whether an individual encounters the product for the first time or is on the verge of making a purchase decision, UGC wields a powerful influence on consumers. The content they view and engage with leaves a lasting impression, compelling them to act.
Authenticity. UGC comes from real customers. This lends an authentic and genuine voice to the brand's products or services. Consumers who are skeptical of advertising that is too pushy or salesy value this.
Trust and Credibility. UGC builds trust and credibility. When potential customers see others sharing positive experiences, it reinforces their confidence in the brand and its products. Consumers trust other consumers. Think of UGC as the modern-day word of mouth. Potential customers are more likely to trust peers or influencers who create UGC. This can lead to higher conversion rates.
Engagement. This type of content often sparks conversations and engagement among consumers. Sharing, commenting on, or liking UGC creates a sense of community around the brand. Plus, encouraging customers to develop content empowers them. It makes them feel like active participants in the brand's story. This sense of community and involvement can foster brand loyalty and advocacy.
Cost-Effective Marketing. Generating UGC is often more cost-effective than producing polished, professional content. Brands can repurpose and leverage the content for various marketing channels and formats. You can use UGC in social media posts, website testimonials, blogs, or email campaigns. You can leverage UGC across several touchpoints in the customer journey. It can also help with a brand's discoverability. The creator's content can lead to increased online visibility.
Diverse Perspectives. UGC showcases a wide range of perspectives and use cases for a product or service. This helps potential customers see how the product or service fits into their needs. They can see how another customer benefitted from the product or service. Their experience may even persuade them to invest in your business as well.
Feedback and Improvement. This form of content provides a valuable source of feedback for brands. By watching what customers say, companies can learn what works well and where to improve. This information can inform product development, customer service enhancements, and marketing strategies.
Viral Potential. UGC has the potential to go viral. When something resonates with a broad audience, it can go viral across social media. This can increase brand visibility and reach. There have been many cases where a TikTok video blows up, causing the product to sell out.
Start Embracing User-Generated Content
User-generated content is a powerful tool for brands. It taps into their customer base's authenticity, trust, and engagement. It drives marketing effectiveness and provides valuable insights. It also fosters a sense of community and partnership between brands and customers.
If you have user-generated content questions, reach out to the experts at Darwill. We are happy to chat and learn more about your marketing needs.