What is User-Generated Content (UGC)?
User-generated content is any type of content, such as images, videos, text, and audio, created by users themselves and published online.
Instead of brands promoting themselves, this content is a genuine review of the products or services by the users.
So, this is authentic content that helps the audience make decisions.
At the same time, UGC helps with the organic promotion of brands through content created by their consumers.
Brands can encourage their audiences to create content using various techniques and repurpose UGC to distribute it on digital channels.
With the definition out of the way, let's look at some real-world examples of how companies have introduced UGC to their content marketing strategies.
The key to producing UGC is encouraging consumers to create content, and there are several ways to source UGC.
The video equipment company GoPro has executed many UGC campaigns through branded hashtags and contests on its social media accounts.
GoPro encouraged users through a monetary prize to participate in its contest by creating and distributing UGC video content.
The winner will be paid $1,000,000… If that's not reason enough to create content, then what is?
Another excellent example of leveraging UGC comes from the British online fashion and cosmetic retailer ASOS.
ASOS launched a section on their website called As Seen on Me which links images of their customers that upload images using the hashtag #AsSeenOnMe on Instagram.
This campaign was amazing in creating a feed of UGC for the ASOS brand.
Finally, we have the fashion lifestyle brand, Calvin Klein.
Calvin Klein invited customers to upload photos of themselves wearing their products using the hashtag #MyCalvins.
The concept was that selected photos would be featured on the website’s product pages.
That way, Calvin Klein showed appreciation for its customers’ content.
If you still need proof that UGC is an effective part of social media campaigns, we've got some really convincing stats up next.
37 User-Generated Content Statistics
Looking for convincing insights?
Then look no further.
We've gathered some impactful stats, showing how UGC has a positive effect on social media engagement and sales.
Let’s get into them!
- 92% of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family above all other advertising.
- 70% of Gen Z and 78% of millennials find UGC helpful with purchasing decisions.
- 48% of marketers believe that customer content can help humanize their marketing.
- 42% of marketing professionals say UGC is a vital component of their strategy.
- 50% of marketers have used UGC content in email marketing.
- 41% of marketers ranked engagement as their top KPI for tracking UGC.
- 75% of marketers believe that UGC is a more authentic type of content than others.
- 84% of Gen Z tend to trust brands that have real customers in their ads.
- 93% of customers find UGC very helpful in their purchasing decisions.
- User-generated product videos are more successful in producing emotional intensity—84% for UGC compared to 77% for branded content.
- UGC content on social networks has a 28% higher engagement rate than branded content.
- 45% of people would unfollow a brand on social media that has too much self-promotion.
- 82% of people have purchased or considered buying a product or service after seeing friends, family, or influencers post about it.
- 58% of consumers are noticing more sponsored posts from content creators.
- 35% of users have reshared posts by other internet users on social media platforms.
- 90% of customers say authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like.
- Consumers are 2.4x more likely to perceive UGC as more authentic than branded content.
- 79% of people say UGC impacts their buying decisions.
- Consumers find user-generated content 9.8x more impactful than influencer content.
- 67% of people say it’s important for brands to share more personalized experiences with them.
- 56% of consumers say they’re anticipating more user-generated content from brands.
- 30% of millennials have unfollowed a brand on social media channels because their content was inauthentic.
- UGC content featuring brands drove 6.9x higher engagement than content that brands made themselves.
- Millennials find UGC 35% more memorable than other media.
- UGC is trusted 50% more than other types of media.
- UGC is 20% more influential in affecting purchasing decisions than all other media types.
- 84% of people are more likely to trust brands if they use UGC in their digital marketing efforts.
- 80% of all online content is consumer-generated.
- 90% of consumers have posted an experience with a brand or product on social media.
- 86% of people consider the customer reviews an essential resource for making purchasing decisions.
- Ads featuring UGC garner 73% more positive comments on social media than traditional ads.
- 31% of consumers say UGC ads are more memorable than traditional ads.
- 28% of consumers say advertisements with UGC are more unique than ads without this form of content.
- 98% of people read online reviews for local businesses.
- Content shared by employees has 2x higher engagement.
- Almost half of customers claim that UGC is an excellent method for discovering new products.
- TikTok user-generated videos scored 22% higher than TikTok brand videos.
Exciting data, right?
These statistics demonstrate the importance of UGC and how it affects a business's digital presence.
UGC is a very effective form of content that can be applied by all businesses, such as eCommerce stores or retailers, and helps them grow through word-of-mouth marketing.
Word-of-mouth marketing is when customers’ interest in a brand is reflected in their daily communications with other people.
Through this, UGC content becomes the ideal choice for business growth.
In the next section, we’ll take a look at the benefits that come from UGC, according to the UGC stats we just saw.
What Makes UGC so Popular Among Brands?
As you’ve seen in the previous section, user-generated content has many benefits for brands.
The impact of such content on your brand can be substantial.
You can tap into a powerful tool to promote your brand and enhance your marketing efforts by encouraging your consumers to create and post UGC.
Let’s examine some of the main benefits of user-generated content.
- Increasing brand awareness and reach: When users create content that they distribute on social media, the appeal of brands increases.
- Boosting engagement rates: Consumers and brands interact through the creation of content that is distributed on digital channels. It’s an exceptional way for brands to build trust with their customers.
- Converting customers into brand advocates: UGC allows consumers to become ambassadors for the brand they support.
- Creating a community: Consumers connect as they share a common experience.
- Generating revenue and sales: UGC increases conversion rates while helping consumers make consumer decisions.
- Understanding customer preferences: You learn their needs and desires through the feedback your consumers share.
The positive effects of UGC are undeniable, and it’s an opportunity you shouldn’t miss.
So, how to create a good UGC strategy?
We’ll cover that in more detail in the following section.
4 Tips to Kickstart Your UGC Campaign
Are you ready to create a successful UGC campaign?
We’ll guide you through creating a compelling campaign with four tips you need to remember.
Tip #1: Build buzz and anticipation
Building buzz and anticipation is the key to a successful UGC campaign launch.
Picture a community eagerly awaiting the release of your latest products and services—your consumers just can't wait to share their thoughts and experiences.
To make this happen, create hype by teasing your upcoming campaigns and sharing sneak peeks on social media.
By generating buzz and anticipation, you'll set the stage for a memorable UGC campaign that generates organic engagement and conversions for your brand.
Tip #2: Reflect the brand’s values
An effective UGC campaign starts with understanding your brand's values and allowing them to inform all of the content you create.
When communicating with your followers and customers, ensure your messaging aligns with what your brand stands for.
Make sure to communicate brand values in a way that resonates with the audience so initiatives have the maximum impact while being respectful and appropriate at every step.
Invite users to join by creating content or participating in activities that reflect the desired brand image.
This will help amplify any message and ensure a successful UGC campaign.
Tip #3: Collaborate with influencers
Partnering with influencers is a game-changer when launching a UGC campaign.
Seek influencers who align with your brand values and have a loyal following.
Collaborate with them to showcase your brand authentically.
Working with influencers will expand your reach, generate organic engagement, and create a buzz around your brand.
Lastly, collaborate with the right influencers, and you'll be well on your way to a successful UGC campaign that drives conversions and engagement for your brand.
Tip #4: Engage with users
A great way to jumpstart any campaign is through engagement with users, as it helps create an active and dynamic community around your brand.
This could mean reaching out to fans who already share content about your product or service and rewarding their efforts, commenting on posts related to your brand, or even joining relevant communities in your niche.
By doing these things, you can incentivize fans to contribute content and build an authentic connection between them and your brand.
Having said all that, it's time to close this guide with a recap.
Start Scaling Your UGC Strategy Today
Now you’re ready to scale through UGC.
You’ve learned about the efficiency of UGC and how to implement it in your content strategy.
All that's left to do is create your own UGC marketing campaigns.
If you need any help, we’re by your side.
Book a demo with Insense, and we’ll create your UGC strategy together.