How to Find UGC Creators? Step-by-Step Guide
In the era where people are tired of being bombarded with ads, promotional, and sponsored content, they find solace in User-generated content and definitely find it more persuasive than any other form of promotional activity.
Whenever we see an ad pop-up on our screen, we look for the skip button instead of listening to the message, causing the marketers behind the screen to scream for their ROI.
You don’t want this to happen. Do you? Then, it’s time to switch to UGC and look for UGC creators.
What is a UGC Creator?
UGC creator is an ordinary user, for instance, a client or a follower of a certain brand who has created content by his or her own will. These creators produce content ranging from images, videos, reviews, blog posts, social media posts, testimonials, and more.
The creators of UGC are often not associated with the brand in any professional or financial capacity but choose to share their experiences and create relevant content out of passion for the brand.
They might share their thoughts, experiences, or creativity through various online platforms with the brand’s products or services.
However, these creators are significant in marketing because they produce more genuine, believable, and familiar content.
In many cases, brands use UGC creators’ content in their marketing strategies to develop credibility, engage the target audience, and create a sense of ownership concerning the brand product.
Why is UGC So Valuable?
1. Authenticity and Trustworthiness:
According to Stackla’s survey, 90% of consumers say authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like and support.
UGC is created by actual users, reflecting authentic experiences, opinions, and interactions with a brand or product. This authenticity resonates strongly with other consumers, fostering trust in the brand.
2. Enhanced Engagement and Relatability:
UGC-based ads get 4x higher CTR and a 50% drop in cost-per-click compared to average ads.
UGC tends to be more relatable and engaging than branded content. Consumers often connect better with content created by their peers or fellow consumers, increasing engagement levels.
3. Diverse Perspectives and Creativity:
UGC provides diverse perspectives and creative expressions that might not be achievable through traditional marketing strategies. This diversity adds depth and richness to a brand’s story and offerings.
Leveraging UGC can be more cost-effective for brands than creating high-budget, professionally produced content. Brands can tap into a continuous stream of content generated by their user community.
5. Strengthening Community and Loyalty:
69% of millennials believe that their involvement in creating UGC strengthens a brand’s relationship with them.
Encouraging users to contribute content fosters a sense of community around the brand. It also acknowledges and appreciates the contributions of loyal customers, strengthening their bond with the brand.
6. Social Proof and Influence:
92% of consumers trust recommendations from others—even people they don’t know—over branded content.
UGC serves as powerful social proof. When potential customers see others positively engaging with a brand, it influences their purchasing decisions, serving as an effective form of word-of-mouth marketing.
7. Impact on Purchase Decisions:
Studies consistently show that consumers are more likely to trust UGC when purchasing. It influences their perceptions and can significantly sway their buying choices.
The collective impact of these factors makes UGC an invaluable asset for brands looking to build authenticity, engage with their audience, and create meaningful connections that drive brand loyalty and sales.
Pros and Cons of Working With UGC Creators
Pros of Working With UGC Creators
|Authenticity||UGC creators offer authentic content reflecting real experiences, fostering trust.|
|Diverse Perspectives||Different creators bring diverse viewpoints, appealing to varied audience segments.|
|Cost-Effectiveness||Often more affordable than traditional marketing, reducing production and ad spending.|
|Engaged Audience||UGC creators often have dedicated and engaged followers, enhancing content reach.|
|Creative & Fresh Content||Provides a constant flow of innovative, fresh content, keeping the brand’s image dynamic.|
|Community Building||Encourages community involvement, fostering brand loyalty and a sense of belonging.|
Cons of Working With UGC Creators
|Quality Control||Varied quality standards may challenge maintaining consistent brand messaging and image.|
|Reliability||Some creators might not adhere to deadlines or may not align with brand values consistently.|
|Legal Issues||Copyright, licensing, and usage rights could pose legal challenges if not managed properly.|
|Risk of Negative Content||The content might not always align with brand standards, potentially leading to a negative impact.|
|Limited Control||Brands have limited control over content creation, which could deviate from brand guidelines.|
|Competition with Other Brands||Creators might work with multiple brands simultaneously, diluting exclusivity and impact.|
UGC Creators vs. Influencers: How They’re Different
|Definition||Regular consumers creating content about a brand||Individuals with a dedicated following promoting brands|
|Origin of Content||Self-generated by consumers||Created intentionally by influencers for promotion|
|Motivation||Genuine interest or experience with the brand||Often financially incentivized to promote brands|
|Relationship with Brands||Organic, voluntary content creation||Collaborative partnerships or paid endorsements.|
|Follower Engagement||Varied audience sizes and engagement levels||Typically, larger, engaged followings on platforms.|
|Content Authenticity||Authentic, real-life experiences shared||More polished, stylized content for brand promotion.|
|Control over Content||Brands have limited control over content creation||Brands often have more control over content|
|Diversity of Perspectives||Offers diverse, unbiased perspectives||It might present a narrower, curated brand image|
|Cost-effectiveness||Generally more cost-effective due to the voluntary nature||It may require higher budgets for sponsored content.|
|Long-term Brand Association||May have long-term loyalty but not exclusive to one brand||Often engaged in short-term brand partnerships.|
Tips for Working With UGC Creators
1. Define your Marketing Objectives:
Clearly outline what you aim to achieve with UGC. Whether increasing brand awareness, driving sales, or building community engagement, having well-defined goals helps align content creation efforts.
2. Avoid Being Too Prescriptive:
Allow creators creative freedom within brand guidelines. Providing a framework rather than strict instructions fosters authentic content that resonates with their audience.
3. Stick to Creators with an Existing Audience:
Choose creators whose audience aligns with your target demographic. Leveraging their established audience ensures your brand message reaches those already interested in similar content.
4. Generate a Creative Brief:
Offer a concise yet comprehensive overview of expectations, brand guidelines, goals, and any specific requirements. A detailed brief helps creators understand your vision while maintaining flexibility.
5. Compensate Them Properly:
Fairly compensate creators for their time, effort, and influence. This ensures a positive relationship, motivates quality content creation, and fosters long-term collaborations. Fair compensation validates their contribution and commitment to your brand.
7 Ways to Find UGC Creators for Your Brand
1. Use an Influencer Marketing Platform:
These tools often have databases of influencers and UGC creators. They also provide insights into the creator’s reach, engagement, and content style. This can help you analyze whether or not they are fit for your campaign.
2. Social Media Monitoring
Another way to look for UGC creators is by monitoring hashtags, mentions, and tags related to your brand. Engage with users who are already creating content about your brand or related topics. It can be difficult to keep track of these mentions, so various online tools help you save time and do the tracking for you.
3. Launch user-generated content campaigns
If you have a strong online audience base or a vast reach, the best way to go is by initiating campaigns and encouraging users to create content related to your brand. This could be done through challenges, prompts, or specific themes that resonate with your brand values. You can encourage the participation of your audience by rewarding the best entries as well.
4. Create a Brand Ambassador Program
Another way many big-shot brands have adopted is the “Brand Ambassador Program.” Many successful UGC examples available, like Nike, GoPro, Gymshark, etc., have leveraged this program in their marketing efforts, and we clearly see the results. It’s a great way to hunt for UGC creators in big numbers.
For this, you need to develop a structured program where passionate customers or enthusiasts can become ambassadors for your brand. These individuals can create and share content in exchange for perks, recognition, or exclusive access.
5. Ask Your Customers After a Purchase
Asking for feedback and engaging with customers post-purchase goes a long way. Ask them to share their experiences by creating content, such as a video testimonial, a social media post, etc., and in exchange, you can offer incentives.
This will help your brand generate UGC and get product or service feedback.
6. Partner with Influencers
Collaborate with established influencers who have an engaged audience. They can either create content themselves or encourage their followers to generate content around your brand.
7. Run Contests and Challenges
Organize contests or challenges specifically designed to generate UGC. Set clear guidelines, themes, or objectives, and offer rewards or recognition for the best submissions.
Tips to Maximize the Impact of Your UGC Content
1. Make UGC Videos Shoppable
Incorporate user-generated videos into your e-commerce platform, allowing viewers to purchase featured products or services directly. Add clickable links or buttons within the videos that lead to the product page, making it easier for viewers to transition from inspiration to purchase.
2. Use UGC in Social Ads
Integrate UGC into your paid social ads. Authentic content users create resonates well with audiences, increasing engagement and conversions. Tailor UGC to fit different ad formats and platforms for optimal results.
3. Report on Social Handles
Share UGC on your brand’s official social media accounts. Highlighting user-generated content showcases customer appreciation and encourages others to create and share similar content. Always credit the creator and encourage community engagement around it.
4. Embed on Website
Feature UGC on your website to build trust and authenticity. Create dedicated sections or pages that display customer reviews, testimonials, images, or videos showcasing real-life experiences with your products or services. This builds credibility and aids in the purchasing decisions of potential customers.
5. Display on Instore Screens
For physical retail spaces, leverage UGC on screens or monitors within the store. Showcase customer testimonials, images, or videos that endorse your products or brand, creating a more immersive and persuasive shopping experience for visitors.
By strategically implementing these tactics, brands can leverage the authenticity and benefits of user-generated content across various touchpoints, effectively influencing consumer behavior and enhancing brand perception.
UGC creators, ordinary users who voluntarily produce content related to brands, play a pivotal role in marketing.
These creators, unaffiliated with brands in a professional capacity, share genuine experiences and content resonating authentically with audiences.
The value of UGC lies in its authenticity, driving trust and engagement. Statistics reveal its impact, with UGC-based ads garnering higher engagement and influencing purchase decisions.
Though working with UGC creators presents challenges like quality control, the benefits—enhanced engagement, cost-effectiveness, and community building—make UGC an invaluable asset.
Effective strategies, from defining marketing objectives to compensating creators fairly, empower brands to harness the power of UGC and build meaningful connections that foster brand loyalty and sales.