Once you witness the power of user-generated content (UGC), you're pulling out all the stops to get more!
Here's the thing: more isn't necessarily a good thing.
You realise the true value of UGC content when you repurpose it wisely. You want to wring every submission of good quality content dry; because that is what will impact your business and bottom line.
Most brands use UGC to boost brand awareness and build a community. Others embed it as social proof across their website and marketing efforts to influence purchasing decisions. At Kynship, we repurpose UGC created by influencers into full-scale paid social media strategies for Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.
Why? Because creative is the largest lever we can pull.
Let’s run through four examples of user-generated content campaigns we generated for Animalhouse Fitness, M&Ms, Blendtopia, and Native. We’ll dig into each campaign's: UGC strategy, results, and content analysis. Plus, some tips you can follow when setting up your user-generated content campaigns.
4 Successful User-Generated Content Campaigns
There are many ways you can collect quality UGC; giveaways, hashtag campaigns, automated post-purchase emails, and many more.
In the following content examples, we generate UGC from real people with our product seeding strategy.
Technically speaking, we call this type of content creation, influencer-generated content (IGC).
In our experience, there are three types of videos that work.
1. The Tutorial Video
2. The Unboxing Video
3. The Reaction Video
Any of these are perfect for running ads, and will get a huge ROI when it’s from professional content creators.
Although we cover influencer-generated content examples below, influencers are just another type of user. Real customers and employees could also become content creators for your UGC campaigns.
If that’s what you’re trying achieve, read our article on How To Get Quality User-Generated Content (UGC) for strategies and campaign ideas to generate this type of quality content from your existing customers.
Example #1: Animalhouse Fitness UGC Campaign
Animalhouse Fitness is a brand that develops innovative solutions to help fitness enthusiasts achieve their wellness goals.
Their goal was to generate authentic and genuine user-generated content that could be used as part of a broader marketing strategy to promote their new product MonkeyFeet (a device to allow you to lift weights with your feet).
Kynship product seeded MonkeyFeet to over 100 influencers of all different sized followings before ramping up any marketing spend on Facebook and Instagram ads.
- They're not polished enough to feel set-up, scripted, or forced but still good enough quality to be promoted on Animalhouse Fitness' social media platforms and used in marketing campaigns
- Demonstrates in real-time how easy it is to use the product and the effectiveness of it
- These videos are basically the digital version of word-of-mouth — communicating the benefits of Monkey Feet in a genuine and trustworthy way, as if they are showing or talking to a friend
- There is a large variety of target audiences represented across these videos. We were able to target ads to different audiences based on the user in the video. We wouldn't have this ability to target such a wide spectrum of audiences from studio-produced content and if we did, to film this much content would be costly!
- Some influencers used the hashtag #monkeyfeet which was great at generating buzz for the campaign and encouraged other users to post about the Monkey Feet product
Animalhouse Fitness' User-Generated Content Marketing Results
Every week we continued to seed out product for free to our list of influencers. Through our seeding efforts, we generated 3,710 organic posts, without even asking for it.
So instead of making a massive upfront investment in a studio shoot or paying influencers in exchange for content — our team was able to get a ton of influencer-generated content for free, and from people who were authentic, product adopters. As we discuss in What is UGC: authentic content is key!
Our team launched 10-15 new, unique ads every week on behalf of Animalhouse Fitness using the creative from influencers.
Over four months we generated over $1M in revenue off the back of influencer content that was posted organically and then repurposed into Facebook and Instagram Ads.
Not only that ... Animalhouse Fitness was named one of Shopify’s fastest growing companies in 2020 after only launching in October 2020. A credit to a smart and cost-effective UGC campaign.
Example #2: M&M's TikTok UGC Content Campaign
The brand we all know and love that brings us delicious chocolate treats.
With consumers living in quarantine for over a year at the time, due to the COVID-19 crisis, M&M's wanted a campaign to help people connect with others who they may not have been able to see in person.
It was important to find diverse and inclusive influencers and to leverage TikTok as a platform to execute on this vision. Helping people feel included by championing fun.
Again, we used product seeding to bring this campaign to life. We reached out to 600 influencers and seeded custom M&Ms to 258 influencers of a wide variety of followings and audiences. From that audience, 64 influencers posted content and we were able to create 110 creative assets from this.
The content went viral on TikTok, was leveraged within FB, and was the catalyst for their insane DTC growth. Because we wanted to lead with the gifting angle, we sent custom packages that allowed for easier content creation.
The packages that we sent to these influencers were personalized gifts (even down to an actual face on the M&M). When they opened the package up and filmed, it planted the seed in the audience’s head of how they could gift this product for Mother’s and Father’s Day.
Here are some of the great pieces of user-generated content we were able to curate from the Mother's Day and Father's Day campaigns:
- The videos demonstrate the goal of connection that M&Ms facilitated
- They aren't polished or restricted by professional standards. Instead, they capture genuine reactions, which help to gain the trust of an audience
- They show real life examples of the custom M&M's so potential customers can see the quality of what they would get
- All the videos have captions which is important to maximise engagement because 90% of scrollers watch videos without sound
- They show the excitement of the unboxing experience and create a buzz that potential customers will want to be apart of
- They championed fun
M&M's' User-Generated Content Campaigns Results
These campaigns had great organic results from the influencer's social media posts, which directly led to 31 million impressions across social channels.
When comparing their results to 2020 sales across both organic and paid channels, M&M's saw a 67% increase in sales of Mother's Day gifts and 457% increase in Father's Day sales.
When repurposing the user-generated content for advertising it outperformed the traditional creative in A/B testing.
Example #3: Blendtopia
Blendtopia is an organic range of pre-packaged smoothie blends that help make clean nutrition convenient, while tasting amazing.
We worked with Blendtopia to develop an influencer-generated content campaign that would help launch their new product — a range of keto-friendly smoothie blends.
They wanted to move beyond the “standard” paid social campaigns and approach more from a wholistic business perspective.
We product seeded the keto-friendly smoothie blends to 469 influencers. We asked for nothing in return but landed a lot of authentic and FREE content:
- We can't say it enough, the authenticity!
- These clips all show how convenient the product is by demonstrating how quickly they can make a nutritious and most-importantly, keto-friendly meal
- They are all super-engaging and fun as the user watches what is essentially a tutorial of how to turn the product into a meal. It leaves their audience wanting a taste of the product
- Again, we have captions which is great for users viewing without sound
Blendtopia's user-generated content campaign results
We were able to generate lots of engaging, authentic content to use as creative in social media advertising campaigns to launch the new range. We achieved a 44% post rate with 208 influencers posting organic content. From this, we were able to generate 694 different content assets.
I know what you’re thinking, the pieces of Influencer-Generated Content we shared above don’t look like a top-performing asset.
When in fact, the IGC achieved a CPA 42% lower than the brand’s target CPA! That’s why it’s so important to remove personal biases when adding content to an ad account, and it’s the reason why we always test and scale.
Example #4: Native
Native makes daily care products like deodorant, body wash, toothpaste and shampoo that are good, clean, fun and cruelty-free.
Native wanted to generate user content to help build awareness of their deodorant range.
We sent the deodorant, no-strings attached, to carefully selected influencers. We received a tonne of new, great quality assets:
- We sound like a broken record but the point we hope we have made by now is that authenticity sells! These videos are real life accounts from real life users.
- Potential customers can see that these people using the product are just your everyday women. Their need for a reliable deodorant is the same as theirs. It's relatable content.
- These videos show the quality of the product in that it isn't leaving marks, stains or skin irritation.
- Although we don't have smellevision, the user can trust that the product has left these women smelling great as they are giving a genuine review.
Native's user-generated content campaign results
We generated so much new user content that we were able to repurpose it into highly engaging social ads that increased ad account performance by 69%.
The return on ad spend (ROAS) for the influencer-generated content was 44% greater results than the rest of the account.
Setting Up Your Own UGC Campaign: 6 Tips to Follow
From all the UGC campaigns we set-up and run, here are our top 6 tips to help you succeed.
1. Use a platform (we use MightyScout) to organise your content collection
Collect and curate all the content that is being organically posted on behalf of the brand in real-time.
2. Invest your time in finding the right social media influencers for your brand
We make sure to seed product to influencers that create great video content to ensure their assets transition into top performing Facebook and Instagram ads. To learn more, read our article 'How to find the right social media influencers for your brand.'
3. Be sure to ask for usage rights to stay out of any legal trouble when reusing social media content
Even though it's about your brand and you have gifted the product, it's good practice to earn the rights to use the material. Learn more by reading User-Generated Content Rights.
4. Add captions to every video
The majority of people viewing ads never click to listen to the sound. If there are no captions, potential consumers will not be able understand what your ad is trying to communicate. Performance has also reflected that videos with captions always outperform those without.
5. Size your content appropriately to the social channel
The other thing you need to do when leveraging the best user content in your digital marketing, is have your marketing team resize the videos to the appropriate specs for optimization purposes on each social media channel.
6. Use hashtags where possible to help you track and unify users
Encourage your customers and influencers to post your brand's content using a particular hashtag, preferably one that will define that specific campaign. This will help to track and bring users together around a common purpose or in this context, marketing campaign.
Time to Start Wringing (That UGC Bling)
- The best ads don’t look like ads
- What works on social media is the OPPOSITE of what works on traditional media
- Native, raw, shaky, timely, vertical and doesn’t require sound — all great attributes for UGC content
The campaign success we’ve achieved for brands like M&M’s, Native, AnimalHouse, and Blendtopia have all started with product seeding. Gifting a product to an influencer without the requirement to post.
This is what we recommend as the fastest way to build up a library of thumb-stopping, authentic content that you can repurpose, test, and scale across your social ad accounts.
We won't lie, this process takes time and in our case— a whole team! So if you do need some help, hit us up.