User-Generated-Content: What Is It? Why Is It Important, exactly?

Any content—text, videos, photographs, reviews, etc.—created by individuals rather than corporations is referred to as user-generated content (UGC).


Have some stylish new clothes that you're eager to flaunt? You'll probably take a photo and upload it to your social media accounts. Alternatively, what if you acquired a nice new item and uploaded an unpacking video to your YouTube channel? Both of these instances are user-generated material, whether you realize it or not (UGC).


Not yet understanding? We've got you covered, so don't worry.


You'll discover what user-generated content is in this article along with some other things.



Coca-Cola: #ShareACoke Campaign



User-generated content: What is it?


User-generated content, commonly referred to as UGC or consumer-generated content, is unique content made by customers specifically for a business and shared on social media or through other channels. UGC can take many different forms, such as pictures, movies, reviews, a recommendation, or even a podcast.


What sources are there for UGC content?


Customers

Think of Instagram praise-filled posts or TikTok unboxing videos. Most often, you'll seek UGC from your consumers, either because you've asked for it or because they've naturally chosen to share information about your business.


Brand loyalists

Supporters, defenders, or supporters. Whatever you choose to name them, your most loyal customers are often the ones who are most enthused about your company. Since brand acolytes are so fervent in their devotion to the brand, this audience group is excellent for approaching and requesting particular UGC content.



Employees

Employee-generated content (EGC) reveals the significance and narrative of your brand. For instance, images of staff members packing or assembling goods, or a video of your team discussing why they enjoy working for your business. This behind-the-scenes content promotes authenticity across social media and advertisements while establishing brand identification.



Lush Cosmetics: #Handmade UGC Campaign


Why is it important?

Why is user-generated content important?

UGC is utilized at every level of the buying process to enhance conversions and affect engagement. Customer-focused content can be utilized on social networking platforms as well as other platforms including email, landing pages, and checkout pages.


Raises the bar for authenticity

Brands now have to compete fiercely for audience attention in order to be visible online. As a result, consumers—especially the notoriously fickle Gen-Z—are more picky about the companies they contact with and buy from.


And genuine content is beloved by more than just customers. 60% of marketers concur that successful content must have both quality and authenticity. UGC from your customers is the only sort of material that is more authentic.


Promotes community growth and brand loyalty

Customers now have a rare chance to actively take part in a brand's expansion through user-generated content (UGC). Because developing UGC enables users to participate in a brand's community and because individuals thrive when they are a part of something bigger than themselves, this has a significant impact on brand loyalty and affinity.


UGC also facilitates dialogue between a brand and its audience, and this degree of brand contact aids in the development and expansion of an active community.


By fostering and strengthening ties between the audience and the brand, sharing audience material also helps to increase brand loyalty.


Serves as an indication of trust

Recall how the Fyre Festival was advertised as a "immersive music festival over two transformative weekends," but the real venue was a field of soggy tents with no food or electricity. People don't trust marketers or advertisements because of this.


Only 9% of Americans actually place a high level of trust in the media, which is not surprising given the surge of fake news since the global pandemic of 2020.


More than ever, brands must put in more effort to become trustworthy. UGC is the ideal format for businesses to raise their trust score, and 93% of marketers concur that consumers trust content created by customers more than content created by brands.


Similar to how they would approach their friends, family, or professional network for advice, audiences look to UGC as a trust indication. This is where user-generated content (UGC) can excel since it is simply that: a personal suggestion. Over 50% of millennials base their choice to buy a product on recommendations from their family and friends.


Boost conversions and have an impact on consumer choices

In the last phases of the buyer's journey, when you're trying to convert your audience and persuade them to buy, user-generated content has a huge impact.


UGC serves as real-world social proof that your product is worthwhile to purchase. For instance, when they see people who resemble them wearing or utilizing your product, your audience may be more likely to make a purchase.


Even non-human customers can be shown using your product, as Casper does in this user-generated image of Dean the Beagle.



Apple: #ShotoniPhone UGC Campaign



Adaptable & Flexible

It is possible to leverage adaptable and flexible UGC outside of social media in other marketing efforts, transforming the strategy into an omnichannel one.


For instance, you could include UGC photographs in an email sent to a customer who has abandoned their shopping cart to encourage them to buy something, or you could incorporate user-generated content into important landing pages to boost conversion rates.


Even a landing page specifically for UGC content was made by Calvin Klein. Customers see other customers supporting the brand and showcasing how the products look on real people instead of overly styled models by seeing real examples of customers styling their Calvins.


Cost effective

a more economical alternative to influencer marketing

Hiring an influencer might cost millions of dollars on average. What does it typically cost for consumers to post about how much they love your product? hardly anything


UGC is an affordable option to expand your business and add a fresh marketing approach to the mix. Additionally, there is no need to spend money hiring an ostentatious creative firm to create brand assets or content for your campaigns.


Connect with your audience, who are the most crucial stakeholders in your company. The majority will be thrilled to be highlighted on your channel.


UGC is less expensive and simpler to manage for smaller brands or those that are just getting started than investing in more extensive brand awareness campaigns.


Works in harmony with social commerce

Social commerce, or shopping directly on your preferred social networks, is the way of the future of internet retail. The fundamental appeal of social commerce is that it enables users to make purchases directly within a social media app rather than leaving the network.


Consider pausing when browsing Instagram to look at a pretty new bathrobe. You tap to get additional information about the item, choose to buy it, and finish the transaction through the app. That is an example of social trade.


Social commerce and UGC complement each other well since UGC influences conversion rates. User-generated content and social commerce are a perfect match because over 80% of users agree that UGC influences their purchasing choice.



If you’re serious about scaling UGC, invest in a good Social Media Ageny to help uncover relevant user-generated content and insights for your campaigns.