UGC on TikTok – Why Your Brand Needs To Try It
If you useTikTok, you may be noticing a new type of content trending lately, and it’s not going anywhere. User generated content, also known as UGC, is here to stay – and for a very good reason.
What is UGC? UGC is any content that can be considered “user-generated,” or created by smaller, more relatable social media users and creators – but not large influencers.
UGC is trending right now, especially on TikTok, while the reign of the influencer might be winding down for a while. This isn’t because influencers are going anywhere, but social media users are growing tired of the obvious promotion, the unattainable lifestyle, and the “salesy” posts.
UGC is on the rise because of its honesty, transparency, and “realness” – something that matters way more on social media in 2022 than it ever has before. When companies use UGC, social media viewers automatically assume that the quality of the products and services are good.
This is because of the concept of social proof- when someone else does something, other people assume it’s a worthy endeavour. It’s the same reason that people read testimonials and reviews before buying something: Because they want to ensure quality.
UGC is worth 100 reviews in one, because you’re getting a live endorsement of something from a creator you know, trust, or who has lots of viral content. This helps build positive associations with a brand, desirability, and market demand for products and services.
Why is user-generated Content so popular on TikTok?
TikTok is a unique platform: TikToks are actually designed for virality, no matter who you are, and it doesn’t necessarily favor influencers. Just an average TikTok user can gain hundreds of thousands of followers with a few viral videos. The platform of TikTok was actually engineered to keep people scrolling, so content is much more likely to be seen by many users.
And did you know there are more users on TikTok than on any other social media platform?
Think about the opportunities there.
TikTok was a platform created for everyday users. It has less of an emphasis on the power of the influencer than Instagram does, which makes it very popular amongst millennials and Gen Z. UGC does particularly well onTikTok because this is what the platform was designed for: Helping normal people share a story, a message, or a product, and helping them be seen by a large audience online.
When it comes to posting UGC on TikTok, the key theme to focus on is trust: If a big influencer with millions of followers is posting about a product or service, it’s highly likely that they’re being paid or endorsed to do so. General viewers have much less trust for paid promotions now than they used to.
However, on TikTok, UGC is helping companies grow and small brands get discovered fast because of trust. A small, real-world user posting about their genuinely great experience with something is far more honest and realistic than a paid promotion, and users tend to respond better to UGC in marketing campaigns.
These days, it feels like everyone is trying to sell something, and users on social media have grown weary and more suspicious. But UGC helps brands build better reputations and gain a following more quickly. TikTok users expect transparency and honesty, and one of the best ways to achieve this is through real-life testimonials from everyday people.
How does User-Generated Content Work on TikTok?
On TikTok, UGC is pretty simple: A creator will make a short video featuring a product, service, or anything that they want to share with their audience.
There are dozens of ways a creator could do this. TikTok videos are usually short and flashy, so they grab the user’s attention and make you want to learn more. Creators on TikTok experiment with music, colors, text, font, and visuals to make their videos stand out.
Creating videos on TikTok is easy, and so is watching them – more, and more, and more. TikTok’s algorithm actually designed TikToks to be “addicting,” so many users can’t stop after watching just one video. This helps UGC continue to work well online – users are bound to stumble upon a UGC video after so much scrolling, and once it has a certain level of visibility, it’s likely to go viral.
UGC works on TikTok because it builds trust and helps tap into the desire that users already have. When social media viewers watch someone they already know and trust enjoying a specific product, they are far more likely to purchase it themselves.
UGC can help your brand build a good reputation online as well, which is a huge part of building trust with your consumers. TikToks can help products and services seem more appealing, more aesthetic, and provide a level of education to potential buyers that pushes them over the edge to complete the sale.
How UGC Puts the Customer First
TikTok is extremely user-friendly, even more so than other social media sites in the past. UGC puts the customer first because it’s actually appealing to the viewer instead of an advertisement they don’t want to see.
UGC often is more about giving something to the viewer, rather than asking them to buy something. For example, many UGC videos are created for entertainment purposes, like “get ready with me” videos or routine videos.
These are very effective examples of UGC, because they are not salesy at all. Instead, the videos typically follow content creators as they do something and show off their lifestyle, which is one of the most effective forms of marketing.
How UGC helps everyone win
UGC is a social media content strategy that truly does help everyone win. How?
Social media users win because they are consuming content that is interesting to them, entertaining, and they aren’t having to deal with overt advertisements or pushy influencers.
Creators benefit, too, when their videos go viral and they get lots of attention. TikTok encourages users to just be themselves and be real, which is what helps videos go viral, so content creators love watching their authentic content go viral.
Companies and small businesses are winning because they’re able to highlight their brands, offerings, and products in a way that seems natural, genuine, and relatable. They’re able to access large groups more easily, and their marketing and advertising seems natural instead of pushy or self-promotional.
And lastly, UGC helps TikTok overall because it contributes to the user base, the content creation stream, and the algorithm that allows companies to continually promote their products or services. TikTok has become a very important platform for social influence and marketing because there are so many users on it, particularly between the ages of 18-35. UGC TikToks could potentially recharge your marketing efforts, if you haven’t tried it before.
Best practices for UGC campaigns on TikTok
The best UGC campaigns on TikTok will form an emotional connection with social media viewers, because this helps build trust and desire for the product or service.
In general, UGC should be short-form, no longer than a minute. It’s helpful for the content creator to be front and center in the UGC video, communicating with their audience in some way, and the content should come off as very natural and not “staged.”
Longtime social media users have little patience for content that seems fake, sponsored, or promoted heavily. They scroll past it quickly, just as someone might mute the advertisements in their Hulu show. Anything with the hashtag #ad is easily ignored.
But this is where UGC can really shine, and why it’s changed the game for marketing on TikTok. It’s real, it’s relatable, and it’s very entertaining. If you want some ideas for new UGC videos, all you have to do is scroll for a few seconds on TikTok – you’ll be overcome with great examples.
First and foremost, remember to keep it fun, keep it light, and put your customer first. Make sure that whatever you’re creating offers the viewer something before it asks them for anything. Take them on a fun journey, an entertaining video, or an educational experience. Make them want to continue watching your content by making it invaluable to them, so they continue to follow your account for more education, entertainment, ideas, or inspiration.
Even if your content is educational, be sure to keep it short and sweet. If need be, provide more information in the caption.
UGC will drive TikTok videos forward, and as time goes on, we expect to see less and less influencer marketing and more UGC – simply because it is more believable, more effective, and more “real.”
How to find influencers on TikTok
Trust us. Influencers on TikTok are not hiding – they want to be found!
You can use industry-specific hashtags to find creators who work in your same niche. For example, if you have a health and wellness brand, you can find health and wellness influencers through that hashtag or others, like #healthyeating #fitness or #running.
Get creative with it!
You can also go to your favorite influencer’s pages and look at who they are following. They probably are following people in the same or a similar industry.
It can be helpful to look for “micro influencers” to work with, or people with a following under 10k.
This is because these creators are seen as more ‘real’ currently, whereas a huge influencer with 5 million followers probably seems to have an unrealistic, unattainable lifestyle to most social media users. Also, smaller influencers and creators will very likely be a more budget-friendly option, since large influencers charge a lot more for endorsement and product placement.
How to implement UGC into your own marketing strategy
It’s becoming more and more common for companies to use UGC videos on TikTok as part of their marketing campaigns and advertisements, since it’s coming across as more genuine. But how can you start doing this yourself?
For the most part, there are two ways to do this: The first way is manually, and you must find influencers or creators and come up with the videos yourself. You could run your own TikTok account and use people from within the company to create the videos, which is less costly, but it would take a lot of time, planning, and strategy.
If you don’t have a full-time social media person or you’re a small business who needs a little outside help, consider a UGC agency to help you meet all your UGC campaign needs. Agencies like dally.co were created specifically to help businesses market on TikTok with UGC, and they have the expertise to back it up.
It’s important to create content that resonates with your target audience, and this can be tricky to figure out. UGC agencies can be really helpful in determining what you need to say, how to say it, and who to target.
Dally.co helps you build your business, with specialised TikTok expertise and knowledge about how to create viral UGC content. Running a small business can be stressful and time-consuming already, and many companies don’t feel they have the time to manage their own social media accounts. Working with a UGC agency can help you not only create one-off UGC, but also to help you to create an effective overall strategy for how UGC is going to propel your marketing forward.