User-generated content (UGC) is utilised by marketing teams regularly. It helps brands to create a sense of authenticity and social proof. These are vital commodities when you’re delivering marketing that wins customers.
The growth of UGC in marketing
Filmmaker, Orson Welles once said, “the enemy of art is the absence of limitations”. It appears that never have truer words been said. Whilst the world has been forced to adjust to lockdown, it seems as though creativity is flourishing.
This has been particularly true of UGC. Coinciding with the growth of social media, UGC is a positive offshoot of the two-way relationship consumers have with brands. In fact, according to Yotpo, the use of UGC in marketing activity has tripled in the last 10 years.
This seemed to accelerate even more during the pandemic. Brand lovers have taken to letting their favourite brands know just how much they appreciate them. True to reciprocal relationships that brands now have customers, Covid-19 and uncertain budgets, marketing teams have taken UGC and run with it.
Check out 5 of the best user-generated content marketing activity created during lockdown:
We have spent our time reviewing a plethora of creatives built around UGC and we’ve cherry-picked the top 5 for you:
To shine a light on how people are staying connected during the pandemic, Facebook enlisted agency, Dorga5, to help. They curated footage collected from real people to reflect how individuals were coping throughout lockdown.
- Women’s Aid: Lockdown
Working with Engine, Women’s Aid used footage of empty London streets captured by individuals during their exercise sessions. Their objective was to highlight that abusers also “work from home”, bringing attention to the plight of domestic abuse victims.
- McDonalds: Welcome Back
To capitalise on the anticipation of their long-awaited reopening, fast-food chain, McDonald’s spotlighted their customer’s reaction to the news with footage from real-life fans.
- Made.com: Stay Grounded
Furniture upstart Made.com use UGC as the mainstay of their marketing strategy. In April, they launched the “Stay Grounded” campaign to help customers make the most of being at home. Using visuals supplied by their happy shoppers they showcased their products inside their customer’s homes.
- Buffalo Wild Wings: Sports Live On
US restaurant chain, Buffalo Wild Wings, enlisted The Martin Agency to create an uplifting ad. Made entirely from UGC, the ad shows individuals making up their own sports at home in the absence of live sporting TV. Equally impressive, the team created the ad in just 6 days.
What the future holds
As the world moves to a new normal, it’s likely UGC will remain an essential tactic for effective marketing strategies. It is cost-effective, quick and gives brands the ability to authentically engage with consumers.
Managing a growing library of UGC can quickly become challenging. It’s hugely important to put in place systems that can store and organise all your content. It enables marketing teams to access and utilise content remotely and easily. But more than a simple storage solution is required.
Brands need a platform that can manage huge volumes of metadata to make content searchable and reusable. Also, a self-branded system that can ingest UGC submissions directly with a review and approval process inbuilt will become increasingly attractive to marketers. It helps marketers to retain more control over brand reputation and maintain brand consistency which remains a challenge with UGC.
Moreover, almost all brands have a growing library of video content; a system purpose-built for video will help future-proof your martech stack. Platforms that make it easy for you to maintain GDPR standards is also of vital importance.
Digital Asset Management for the long-term
This is where a flexible Digital Asset Management (DAM) solution really starts to add value.
A good DAM enables you to build a branded portal that your teams can use to house and manage your brand content. With granular user-permissions, you can allow external partners like agencies, influencers and your customers to access and download approved assets or upload their own content. Acquiring the right DAM platform for your business can help you overcome the challenges of working with UGC. In conclusion, it is basically a one-stop-shop for all your content needs.
At Imagen, we help brands of all sizes store, organise and share their marketing content effectively. Secure, powerful and unbelievably fast, discover how Imagen can help you get your content in front of your customer with effective media management.