UGC is user generated content - content created by everyday individuals like you and me. In the end, we’re all creators and have a natural desire to share in order to gain validation and feedback. Social media (specifically Instagram) is an expansive world of its own founded on the idea of UGC. All of this UGC can be utilized by brands to support their image and ultimately help sell product. User generated content can technically come in the form of photos, videos, tweets, blog posts, etc., but visual content is what proves to be the easiest to repurpose for brands. Below are a few truths of user generated content.
Whether it’s free or relatively affordable, all brands can take advantage of UGC in one way or another. Most people are thrilled by the idea of a big brand repurposing their content while giving credit to them as the creator. Other times, more influential users may be inclined to ask for monetary compensation in return for your brand using their content. As a brand, you must understand that the influencers with bigger followings are making this their full time job and get paid pretty damn good salaries for doing it. Good content takes planning, talent, and time. Pay up when it makes sense to do so.
Everyone is creating content…literally everyone. It’s no longer just a blogger’s world to create and share content to hundreds and millions of followers. One brand that specifically took advantage of the amount of content that people are willing to produce and share on Instagram is Triangl Swimwear. They didn’t choose to gift only the big influencers, but rather reached out to all kinds of girls to help promote their product. All of the sudden, everyone is wearing a Triangl bikini all summer long. Not only was this a smart tactic on their part, but the bikinis look great on pretty much everyone, making it easy to snap, share and tag the photo.
Consumers listen to their peers when it comes to making purchasing decisions. The more user generated content that forms around your brand, the more trusted exposure your brand will gain. When you switch the mentality from selling something in an ad to selling through personal testament, the reliability of the message grows exponentially.
When it comes to UGC created by influencers, there is the opportunity to get your product or brand in front of more eyeballs that your brand could ever accomplish on its own. It’s actually quite shocking and equally impressive that many of these influencers have millions of followers while fashion magazines have only a fraction of a million followers on Instagram. If you’re able to partner with multiple influencers with large numbers, your brand exposure will continually build.
Oftentimes brands don’t know how to create an influencer strategy and therefore it becomes a daunting and seemingly impossible task. The truth is, if you think that an influencer is truly a right fit for your brand, they will more than likely be stoked to have your brand reach out to them with an opportunity to create UGC (read more about choosing the right influencers for your brand here). Keep track of users posting about your brand whether it was a paid effort or it wasn’t and continue to encourage these brand advocates to share about your brand by liking, commented, and reposting their content.