Is Your Brand Ignoring This Marketing Goldmine? 💰

Greetings, Marketing Mavens!

UGC, or User Generated Content, has seen a meteoric rise in the world of marketing.

Everywhere you look, creators are sliding into dm’s offering to film UGC, brands seeking to use it in their ads, and people on social media platforms passionately discussing its impact.

Strangers on the internet are now UGC gurus with sensational hooks and professional camera equipment.

But what exactly is UGC?
Why did UGC become so popular?
How can you tactically use UGC to acquire customers more efficiently?

We’ve chatted in the past about leveraging customer relationships to grow your business in many ways. This week, let’s dive deep into the world of UGC.

  • Understanding UGC: The Heart of Authentic Marketing 🌟

  • UGC Champions: Brands That Lead by Example 🏆

  • Practical & Tactical: Harnessing the Power of Excited Customers' UGC 🌟

We’ve got loads to talk about.

This newsie is brought to you by Insense.

In this newsletter, we are talking all about UGC and its impact on DTC marketing.

Like me, you’ve probably tried various UGC and influencer marketing platforms, but Insense stands out for the following reasons:

  1. There’s no manual outreach; creators that match your requirements apply directly to your campaigns in minutes.

  2. You can start collaborations immediately and get UGC within 10 days.

  3. Their brief templates make communication smooth and seamless.

  4. With just one click, you can gain access to TikTok Spark Ads codes and Meta whitelisting connections for influencer ads.

  5. You can build a reliable roster of your preferred creators and influencers for long-term collaborations and brand ambassadorships.

Join major eCommerce brands like Clinicalskin, Bearaby, and KOS Naturals who use Insense as their 3-in-1 tool for UGC, influencer posting, and whitelisted ads.

Book a free 1-2-1 strategy call by May 19 and get $200 for your first campaign.

Understanding UGC: The Heart of Authentic Marketing 🌟

User-generated content (UGC) refers to any content created by customers or users of a product or service, rather than by the brand itself.

This can include photos, videos, testimonials, reviews, or social media posts showcasing the product or experience.

UGC is highly valued in marketing because it's seen as more authentic and relatable than traditional advertising, which often comes across as overly polished and less trustworthy.

User-generated content didn't just appear overnight; it has its roots in the early days of the internet.

As people began to explore this new digital landscape, they started creating and sharing content in various forms, like blog posts, forum discussions, and reviews.

The concept of UGC was born out of people's innate desire to connect, share experiences, and express themselves.

As the digital world evolved, brands began to recognize the untapped potential of UGC. They realized that customers trust their peers' opinions more than traditional advertising.

Brands started leveraging UGC to create authentic connections, engage with their audience, and foster loyalty.

The turning point came when brands began to actively encourage and showcase customer-generated content, making it an integral part of their marketing strategies.

UGC Champions: Brands That Lead by Example 🏆

While many brands have experimented with UGC, some have truly mastered integrating it into their marketing strategies.

These success stories provide valuable insights and inspiration for leveraging UGC effectively and creating a solid retention lever.

LEGO: LEGO has been nurturing a passionate fan base for decades, and they've successfully harnessed the power of UGC to keep the enthusiasm alive.

From hosting LEGO building competitions to sharing fan-made stop-motion animations, LEGO consistently celebrates its community's creativity.

They've even launched an Ideas platform, where fans can submit their own LEGO set designs, with the potential for them to become actual products.

LEGO's approach to UGC demonstrates the importance of engaging with your audience and encouraging their creativity.

GoPro: The action camera manufacturer built its entire marketing strategy around UGC.

They invited customers to share their jaw-dropping adventures captured with GoPro cameras.

This brilliant approach turned customers into brand ambassadors, showing the world what GoPro cameras could do while creating a sense of belonging among its user base.

Fun fact: the #GoPro hashtag has close to 50 million results on IG.

IKEA: In 2016, the furniture giant launched the "IKEA At Mine" campaign, which encouraged customers to share photos of their homes with IKEA products in use.

The campaign not only generated massive amounts of UGC, but also allowed potential customers to see IKEA products in real-life settings.

This authentic approach helped build trust and inspire new customers to imagine how they could incorporate IKEA products into their homes.

Starbucks: Starbucks has a history of leveraging UGC to connect with customers and create a sense of community.

Starbucks' annual #RedCupContest invites customers to share their holiday-themed cup designs, and the winners receive Starbucks gift cards.

This simple yet effective campaign generates excitement around the holiday season and gives customers a chance to showcase their artistic talents.

Lululemon: The activewear brand has turned its customers into brand ambassadors by featuring real people wearing their products on social media.

Lululemon encourages customers to share their fitness journeys and tag the brand in their posts.

By reposting these stories and images, Lululemon fosters a sense of community and provides social proof of the quality and versatility of its products.

Apple: Apple's "Shot on iPhone" campaign showcases stunning photographs and videos taken by everyday users on their iPhones.

This powerful UGC campaign not only highlights the impressive capabilities of the iPhone's camera but also connects with the audience by showcasing real-life experiences and moments captured by people just like them.

Dove: Dove's "Real Beauty" campaign challenged traditional beauty standards by featuring real women of all shapes, sizes, and ethnicities in their advertising.

By embracing UGC and showcasing the diverse beauty of their customers, Dove created an inclusive and empowering campaign that resonated with people around the world.

These success stories demonstrate the power of UGC when it is integrated effectively into a brand's marketing strategy.

By embracing UGC, engaging with your audience, and encouraging their creativity, you can create a powerful marketing tool that builds trust, fosters loyalty, and drives growth.

But the real important question to answer is this: How can your brand excel at UGC?

Practical & Tactical: Harnessing the Power of Excited Customers' UGC 🌟

Now that we've seen the success stories of brands who have effectively harnessed UGC, let's explore some tactical steps you can take to make the most of your customers' excitement and create powerful user-generated content.

One of the most important tips I can give you was said better than I ever can by Nik Sharma.

  1. Ensure it feels native and natural: FauxGC can potentially do more harm than good.

  1. Encourage customers to share their stories: Prompt customers to share their experiences with your products through social media, email, and even product packaging.

    The more you encourage customers to share, the more UGC you'll have to work with.

  2. Offer incentives for UGC: Reward customers for sharing their experiences with your brand by offering incentives, such as discounts, exclusive offers, or the chance to be featured on your social media channels.

    Incentives can motivate customers to create and share UGC, helping to spread the word about your products and services.

  3. Leverage customer reviews and testimonials: Turn positive reviews and testimonials into UGC by sharing them on your website, social media channels, and marketing campaigns.

    This not only provides social proof but also demonstrates that you value your customers' opinions and experiences.

    You can always whitelist great posts as well, but remember, you need to get express customer permission before sharing their review or testimonial as an ad.

  4. Collaborate with influencers: Partner with influencers who share your brand values and can create authentic content that resonates with their followers.

    This can help amplify your brand message and encourage more UGC from their audience. Insense makes it ridiculously simple to do this, and I’d encourage you to check them out.

  1. Repurpose UGC across marketing channels: Use the best UGC in your marketing campaigns, such as email newsletters, social media ads, and even print materials.

    This helps to build trust and showcase the real-life experiences of your customers.

  2. Monitor and engage with UGC: Keep an eye on the UGC being shared about your brand and make an effort to engage with customers who are sharing content.

    Respond to comments, questions, and concerns to show that you care about their feedback and appreciate their support.

  3. Showcase UGC on your website: Dedicate a section of your website to showcase the best UGC.

    This not only serves as social proof for your products but also provides inspiration for other customers to create and share their content.

    Some great examples:

Levi’s kicks us off with a campaign right on the top of the homepage!

Fjällräven does a great job pulling UGC that encompasses brand values and vibe.

Madewell highlights UGC that feels natural, yet still “on-brand.”

Fenty both shares UGC and prompts folks to share their own, making great use of the space on their homepage.

Outdoor Voices, the legendary community-led clothing brand, comes in strong with stunning UGC photography that encourages people to “Do Things IRL.”

Fantastically on-brand.

By following these tactics, you can harness the power of excited customers' UGC, creating a powerful marketing tool that builds social proof, fosters customer loyalty, and drives brand growth.

Remember, the key to success with UGC lies in making it easy for customers to share their experiences, engage with your audience, and continually use their feedback to improve your products and services

That’s it for this week!

Any topics you'd like to see me cover in the future?

Just shoot me a DM or an email!


Eli 💛