Author: Boryana Ivanova
What is UGC?
User Generated Content (UGC) is created by users for distribution to others. It can be in the form of social media posts, reviews, blog posts and much more. This type of content is also starting to be used more and more by advertisers due to its many advantages, which include user engagement, personalisation, uniqueness of content and credibility.
An example of creating and distributing this type of content is Calvin Klein’s campaign, where the brand encourages its fans and followers to post a photo of themselves wearing the brand’s clothing using the hashtag “I ____ in #MyCalvins”. In just a few months, the campaign has gained immense popularity, with over 500,000 photos posted on Instagram with the hashtag.
How does it help brands?
Because this type of content is created by users themselves, it is based on a real experience and is much more credible to people who have not yet tried the product or service. Studies show that around 60% of online consumers trust UGC much more than any other type of content. What’s interesting about it is that it gives brands a ‘human touch’ by evoking emotions and reactions in people. Moreover, UGC does not require much money, is easy and quick to create, engages users and is extremely effective.
Benefits of UGC in ads
1. Offers a personalized approach
Consumers trust significantly more the information they receive by “word of mouth”, the so-called WOM Marketing. When this technique is applied to advertising, it achieves great results. When the ads are presented in a personalized and authentic way, directly addressing consumers’ concerns and doubts, they rely much more on the credibility of the information provided.
2. Strengthens brand credibility
It’s known that 92% of consumers rely much more on acquired than paid content because of its emotional impact. User-generated content is perceived as a recommendation from a trusted source who has already tried the product or service. This strengthens both trust and brand credibility, increasing the chance of an order being placed.
3. Stimulates engagement
Through UGC, people more easily understand and resonate with the brand and its identity. Once consumers have received a relevant recommendation and built some trust in the brand, they feel the need to engage with the information by sharing their concerns, opinions or experiences. On platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok this happens extremely easily and quickly, providing a good opportunity for advertisers to take advantage.
4. Boosts sales
Research shows that between 50% and 70% of active users are much more likely to place an order after engaging with user-generated content. The trust that is built helps the buyer make the final decision, which for online stores leads to a higher Conversion Rate as well as greater Return on Investment as the funds to create UGC are minimal.
The famous brand Starbucks uses this strategy in its #RedCupContest, where customers have to post an interesting photo with the hashtag, having the chance to win a Starbucks Gift Card. The set prize further motivates people to enter the challenge, as they both promote the brand, increase its visibility and, of course, sales for Starbucks, as they must first purchase their “red cup” to be able to participate in the challenge at all.
User-Generated Content is a great way for small and large online stores to create and distribute content that doesn’t require a lot of money, creates consumer trust, improves brand credibility and significantly increases sales.
If you want to learn more about how to use UGC in your ads, how to make your ad creative better and increase engagement with your content, then watch the video “3 ways to create ad creative that gets results” on Markademics BG’s YouTube channel, where you will find examples from our working practice as specialists in Facebook advertising: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6ec_9-Cgi0
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