Want to learn how to utilise User-generated content (UGC) in your content strategy?
UGC is a powerful tool that plays an essential role in the growth of your business, however, it comes with a caveat. How do you get customers to create shareable content? And once you have it, how do you make sure it aligns with your overall brand messaging?
We will be discussing all this and more in light of successful examples from brands like Spotify, Lush Cosmetics, LEGO and more!
We are also sharing House of Marketers’ UGC curation checklist to help you understand how to effectively curate UGC and leverage it for your brand’s success.
How to Curate and Leverage UGC for Conversions?
Content created by users has proven to be exceptionally successful, particularly on platforms like TikTok where UGC by customers enables brands to connect with their audience authentically to drive engagement and conversions.
Brands utilising UGC see notable increases in conversion rates. A study revealed a 29% increase in web conversions when UGC is part of the marketing mix. UGC offers a cost-effective content solution. Instead of allocating large budgets for content creation, brands can leverage existing customer content, reducing marketing costs.
Now, all of this is good, but how do you make sure it all ties together perfectly with the overall marketing?
Here’s how you can curate UGC and leverage it effectively in your marketing campaigns:
Develop a UGC-Focused Content Strategy
Plan specifically how UGC will be used in your marketing efforts. This could involve campaigns centred around UGC, featuring UGC in regular posts, or using UGC in targeted ads. Each approach requires a different strategy and planning.
Establishing a clear brand guideline for UGC helps maintain consistency because one of the biggest challenges is ensuring UGC aligns with your brand’s identity and messaging.
Maintain Quality by Pre-defining the ‘Standards’
With an abundance of UGC, filtering out low-quality or irrelevant content is crucial. It’s important to define what ‘quality’ means for your brand.
Does it mean high-resolution images, a certain aesthetic, or authentic storytelling? Setting these parameters helps in curating content that truly represents your brand.
Use UGC to Tell Real Stories
UGC is powerful in storytelling. Use it to showcase real customer experiences, testimonials, or creative uses of your products. This not only adds authenticity to your brand but also creates a deeper connection with your audience.
Building relationships with content creators can lead to more authentic and high-quality UGC. Engage with them, feature their work, and even collaborate on branded content to encourage ongoing UGC creation.
Legal and Ethical Considerations
UGC involves using content created by others, which raises legal issues around copyright and permissions. Understand the legalities of using UGC and always get explicit permission from the original creators before using their content. This not only ensures legal compliance but also respects and values the creator’s work.
Balance UGC with Brand-Created Content
While UGC can be highly effective, relying solely on it can skew your brand’s marketing balance. It’s important to find the right mix between UGC and brand-created content to keep your marketing strategy well-rounded and effective.
Monitor Performance and Gather Insights
Regularly analyse how UGC performs in comparison to other content. Look at engagement metrics, conversion rates, and audience feedback. This data can inform future content strategies and help in refining your approach to UGC.
By effectively addressing these challenges and employing strategic leveraging tactics, UGC can become a cornerstone of your brand’s digital presence.
Check out our guide, “Strategies to Encourage More User-Generated Content”, to learn techniques to boost UGC creation.
Let’s take a look at some brands leveraging UGC to its fullest potential.
Successful UGC Strategies in Action
Exploring real-world examples offers valuable insights into how top brands have effectively used UGC. Here, we look at Spotify, Lush Cosmetics, GoPro, Glossier, and LEGO, analysing their approaches and successes.
@spotify Honestly @molly both dragged me and made me feel so seen for my 2023 listening personality 😭#SpotifyWrapped ♬ original sound – Spotify
“Spotify” Amplifying User Stories
Brands that have mastered the art of personalising user experiences and turning them into powerful marketing tools find a lot of success in curating UGC. Knowing how and when to leverage the user data they have readily available to you helps you create compelling, shareable content that resonates deeply with your audience.
UGC Highlight- Spotify’s “Wrapped” campaign.
Spotify created personalised year-end summaries for users, highlighting their most listened-to songs and artists.
The campaign leverages data personalisation, creating a unique summary for each user. This personal touch encouraged users to share their musical journey, turning each summary into a personalised advertisement.
This campaign resulted in users eagerly sharing these summaries on social media, creating a wave of organic, user-generated promotions for Spotify.
Beyond personalisation, Spotify’s approach taps into the emotional connection users have with music, making the UGC deeply resonant.
For brands, this suggests the power of combining personalization with emotional engagement to foster deeper connections with the audience.
@victoriacanavan The @LUSH Snow fairy lights bath bomb review / demo #lush #LushCommunity #LushCosmetics #lushuk #fyp #fypuk #snowfairy #snowfairylights #bubblegum #cottoncandy #bathbomb #lushbathbomb #christmas #lushchristmas #lushuk #selfcare #skincare #stat #confetti #fairylights #pretty #lushsnowfairy #merrychristmas #xmas #giftidea #newrelease #new #magical ♬ Magical Fantasy – Dmitriy Sevostyanov
“Lush Cosmetics” Community-Driven Branding
Sharing UGC creates a community of loyal followers and customers. It fosters a sense of belonging and connection among users who share similar interests and experiences with your brand, which is exactly what we see Lush Cosmetics do on a daily basis with a lot of success.
UGC Highlight – Featuring customer reviews and experiences.
Lush actively encourages customers to post about their products, often featuring these posts on their official channels. By featuring customer reviews, Lush has created a platform where real user experiences lead the conversation and foster a sense of belonging among its customer base. This approach has humanised the brand and made it more approachable.
Lush’s transparent and authentic strategy resulted in increased customer loyalty and a higher degree of trust in the brand, as evidenced by positive social media engagement and customer feedback.
Lush’s strategy demonstrates the effectiveness of authenticity and transparency in marketing. It highlights the importance of not just selling a product, but also building a community and a brand ethos that customers can relate to and advocate for, thereby helping the brand in creating a loyal customer base and a relatable brand identity.
@gopro @andreas_bergmark has entered orbit 🤯 This POV from his HERO12 Black blew our mind. #gopro #pov #bigair #snowmobile #hangtime ♬ original sound – GoPro
“GoPro” Adventure Through Customers’ Eyes
UGC encourages active participation and engagement. When users see their content featured by a brand, they’re more likely to share and engage, creating a ripple effect of interaction.
Sharing UGC creates a community of loyal followers and customers. It fosters a sense of belonging and connection among users who share similar interests and experiences with your brand.
UGC highlight – Adventure and action video submissions.
GoPro capitalised on its customers’ adventurous spirit by encouraging them to share their experiences. This not only demonstrated the product’s capabilities but also associated GoPro with thrilling, authentic experiences.
These user-shared videos significantly increased brand engagement and provided GoPro with content that showcased real-world durability and versatility, enhancing its appeal to potential customers.
GoPro’s approach highlights the importance of aligning UGC with brand identity. By encouraging content that resonates with the brand’s adventurous image, GoPro strengthened its position as an essential tool for capturing life’s exciting moments.
@glossier A ✨ DewItYourself moment via @First.gloss #glossier #glossierhandcream #handcream #bedazzled ♬ som original – リヴィア ☆
“Glossier” Embracing Transparency
UGC is content created by real users, which resonates more with audiences than traditional, polished advertising. It provides an authentic glimpse into real-life experiences with your products or services.
According to research, 92% of consumers trust organic, user-generated content more than traditional advertising. UGC builds trust by showcasing genuine customer endorsements, something evident in Glossier’s marketing strategy.
UGC Highlight – Showcasing Customer reviews and makeup tutorials.
Glossier’s approach to UGC was to highlight honest customer reviews and authentic tutorials. This strategy not only provided real-life product demonstrations but also fostered an environment of trust.
The brand saw an increase in customer engagement and stronger brand loyalty, as users felt their voices were heard and valued. This approach also provided valuable feedback for product improvement.
Glossier’s success with UGC underscores the importance of valuing customer feedback and creating a platform for genuine user expression. It shows that brands can build stronger relationships with their audience by valuing and highlighting their unfiltered experiences.
@lego When Sunday reset met LEGO Flowers @Helen #sundayreset #flowersareforever #LEGO #LEGObotanical ♬ original sound – LEGO
“LEGO” Celebrating the Customer
Although the primary goal of curating and moderating User-Generated Content (UGC) is to maintain a brand’s consistent narrative, it’s crucial to remember that ultimately, it’s the user who takes centre stage. Finding the right balance in showcasing users effectively highlights the brand as well.
UGC Highlight – Showcasing fan-made LEGO creations.
LEGO’s campaign focused on the creativity of its community, encouraging fans to showcase their unique constructions. This not only highlighted the product’s versatility but also the imaginative possibilities it offers.
By putting customer creativity at the forefront, LEGO reinforced its brand image as a tool for creative expression, leading to increased customer engagement and a stronger community bond.
LEGO’s strategy illustrates the power of celebrating customer creativity to enhance brand appeal. It shows that when brands focus on the imaginative achievements of their users, they not only showcase their product but also build a passionate and engaged community.
These case studies illustrate the diverse and effective ways in which UGC can be curated and leveraged to build brand authenticity, engage audiences, and drive conversions. By adopting similar strategies, you can transform your marketing efforts and create a more dynamic and relatable brand presence on platforms like TikTok.
In this exploration of how leading brands like Spotify, Lush Cosmetics, GoPro, Glossier, and LEGO have harnessed the power of User-Generated Content, we’ve uncovered several key insights. These insights not only demonstrate the effective use of UGC but also offer valuable lessons for any brand looking to leverage this potent marketing tool.
- Personalising UGC can significantly increase engagement. When users see a part of themselves in your content, they are more likely to engage and share.
- Focus on authenticity connection. By fostering a genuine connection with customers and creating a community around shared experiences, brands can build lasting loyalty.
- GoPro’s strategy highlights the effectiveness of showcasing products in action. Real-life demonstrations resonate more with potential customers, offering a glimpse into the product’s practical application.
- Glossier’s focus on transparent customer reviews illustrates the importance of trust in marketing. Honest feedback not only attracts potential customers but also provides valuable insights for product improvement.
- Celebrate your audience. As seen with LEGO, the power of user involvement in brand storytelling leads to brand success.
By understanding and implementing these strategies, you too can unlock the full potential of UGC in your marketing efforts. Remember, the key is not just to use UGC but to curate UGC and leverage it in a way that aligns with your brand’s values and resonates with your audience.
House of Marketers UGC Curation Checklist
Incorporating User-Generated Content (UGC) into your marketing strategy can significantly enhance brand engagement and authenticity. However, curating, posting, and moderating UGC requires careful consideration to ensure it aligns with your brand’s values and marketing goals.
This checklist will guide you through the best practices for managing UGC content effectively.
✔️ Establish Clear Guidelines. Define what type of content is acceptable and aligns with your brand values. Make these guidelines accessible to your community.
✔️ Seek Permission. Always obtain explicit consent from the original creators before using their content in your campaigns.
✔️ Curate for Quality and Relevance. Select UGC that is high-quality and relevant to your brand. Content should resonate with your target audience and reflect your brand identity.
✔️ Use Hashtags Strategically. Create and promote brand-specific hashtags to make it easier to find and curate UGC.
✔️ Engage with Your Community. Show appreciation for user contributions by liking, commenting, and sharing UGC. Engagement encourages more UGC and strengthens community bonds.
✔️ Monitor and Moderate. Regularly review UGC associated with your brand to ensure it remains appropriate and aligns with your guidelines. Track the performance of UGC campaigns to understand their effectiveness in terms of engagement, reach, and conversions.
✔️ Leverage UGC Across Channels. Integrate UGC into your website, social media, email marketing, and other digital platforms for a cohesive brand experience.
✔️ Disclose Partnerships. If a piece of UGC is part of a paid partnership or influencer collaboration, clearly disclose this relationship to maintain transparency and trust.
✔️ Create a UGC + Original Content Mix. While UGC can greatly enhance your content strategy, it should complement, not replace, original brand content.
✔️ Boost reach with Paid Social Ads. Make the most of your ads by amplifying the reach by pinpoint targeting your audience with social media ads. This requires a professional ads specialist, in order to optimise your paid media spend and reduce wastage
By following this UGC Curation Checklist, you can effectively manage and leverage user-generated content to build a more authentic, engaging brand presence. Remember, the goal is to foster a positive, interactive community around your brand, using UGC to enhance trust, loyalty, and ultimately, conversions.
Looking to utilise UGC for your Marketing?
Collaborate with House of Marketers! Our expertise in UGC marketing strategies can help you transform your brand’s narrative, fostering genuine connections and driving conversions.
By partnering with us, you gain access to a team dedicated to curating and leveraging authentic content that resonates with your audience.
Contact us to know more about how we can collaborate with you for your custom tiktok strategy.
House of Marketers (HOM) is a leading TikTok Marketing Agency. Our global agency was built by early TikTok Employees & TikTok Partners, which gives us the insider knowledge to help leading brands, like Redbull, Playtika, Badoo, and HelloFresh win on TikTok. Want us to convert more of Gen Z and Millennials with TikTok? Get in touch with our friendly team, here.