Don’t Underestimate the Power of User-Generated Content

April 3, 2019 - 3 minutes read

More than ever, consumers are looking to social media to discover products, make purchase decisions and interact with brands. But what kind of content do they actually want to see, and more importantly, trust?

According to a recent survey conducted by Stackla, it’s not the content most brands are creating that people trust, but the content created by customers—otherwise known as User-Generated Content (UGC).

What this shows is that in this content-saturated space, consumers are looking for authenticity. In fact, according to Stackla, “90% of consumers say authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like and support.”

Marketers feel the same. Of the marketers surveyed, 83% agreed that authenticity is very important to their brands (Stackla, 2019).

The real question is, just how authentic is the content that brands are producing? The answer differs depending on who is asked.

While 92% of marketers believe that most of their content is seen as authentic by consumers (of course they do), the reality is that 51% of consumers surveyed said that less than half of brands create content that resonates as authentic (Stackla, 2019). This disconnect comes from the fact that marketers and consumers don’t see eye-to-eye on UGC.

UGC is seen as the most authentic form of content around the world and includes photos, videos, reviews, ratings, etc., that have been posted to social media by consumers. People state that they are 2.4x more likely to say user-generated content is authentic compared to brand-created content. However, marketers are 2.1x more likely to say brand-created content is more authentic compared to UGC (Stackla, 2019).

Q: What can marketers do to better connect with users on social media?

A: Utilize user-generated content.

With demand for truly authentic content increasing, marketers are spending greater amounts of time and money trying to produce engaging content. What marketers don’t realize is that consumers are doing the content creation for them, and in a way that resonates with users in a more organic way. In fact, between 65% and 70% of internet users say UGC is far more interesting to them compared to brand content, according to TwineSocial.

By strategically utilizing user-generated content, marketers can resolve their time-consuming and costly content production issues while delivering more engaging, authentic and relevant content.