What is UGC and Why are Brands Using it?
In a fast paced, digitally-run world, it is becoming increasingly harder to grab the attention of consumers. If brands want to stand out in this highly competitive market, they must get creative with their messaging and their marketing strategies. Customers are looking for authenticity in a brand and one of the best ways to establish this is with user-generated content (UGC).
UGC is content related to a certain brand that is voluntarily produced by individuals with the potential to drive conversation and build engagement. If a customer has a great experience with your brand, they are inclined to share that experience with their peers. Word-of-mouth referrals are extremely profitable for businesses because it provides authentic information from previous customers, boosting brand credibility and recognition.
The power of user-generated content has proved to be so beneficial that brands are integrating this into their marketing campaigns.
Share a Coke With…
When Coca Cola launched its “Share a Coke” campaign, people went crazy over the personalized bottles. Coca Cola changed its traditional label to “Share a Coke with” followed by a name. This multi-national campaign, which used 250 of the country’s most popular names, aimed to have people find a coke bottle with their name on it and then share it with friends.
To keep the hype going, Coca Cola asked customers to share pictures of themselves enjoying a coke with their personalized bottles on social media. This lead to massive amounts of user generated content, raising awareness and increasing user engagement with the brand. This massively successful campaign resulted in Coca Cola’s customers stepping into the role of advertiser.
The Royal Wedding
We all remember the highly anticipated royal wedding of American TV star Meghan Markle and Prince Harry of England in 2018. The lavish royal weddings of the past have always been real affairs, but this time, things were a little different.
Along with sending traditional reporters, the BBC news channel also sent 50 people from the general public to watch the wedding and share their experiences on social media. This built a connection with the public by providing them with a way to view the wedding through the eyes of every day people.
The individual stories shared from these 50 viewers were a form of user-generated content. The BBC news used this strategy as a way to attract more viewers and engagement from the public.
People trust the opinions of peers which is why it is so important for brands to incorporate UGC. The more trust and transparency a brand can establish with its customers, the stronger the brand will become.