User generated content is an online marketing tactic that many brands are incorporating into their digital marketing strategies.  User generated content (or “UGC” for short) is content that consumers make to celebrate their enjoyment of a brand.  Common UGC includes photos, videos, and artwork.

User generated content can be posted at any time on almost any platform.  However, brands typically utilize user generated content during online marketing campaigns and contests.  The success of UGC incorporation depends, in large part, on the campaign or contest.  How it incorporates UGC is also a big factor.

Below, we’ve listed FanLogic’s top three favorite types of successful user generated content.  Check it out!

  • Fan Works Fan works are a gold mine of opportunity for UGC.  Sharing images of fan-created artwork, tattoos, and other artistic pieces recognizes your fans’ dedication to your brand.  Not to mention, many fans are excited to see their work on their favorite brands’ feeds.  A fan who is recognized by their favorite brand will likely stay loyal to the brand for life.  For this reason, several video game companies have taken to posting fans’ artwork and cosplay photos.
  • Consumers’ Photos And Videos Consumers’ own photos and videos aren’t just free content for your brand.  They’re also quick, visual testimonials to your brand’s quality.  Additionally, consumers’ photos and videos provide a great contest and campaign opportunity.  For example, hot beverage chain Starbucks hosts a campaign called the Red Cup Contest every Christmas season.  The campaign varies from year to year.  One year, Starbucks made blank red cups available at all locations for a day so that consumers could decorate them and post photos of their uniquely designed cups.  Another year, the company asked consumers to post photos of themselves completing their daily routines with a red cup in hand.  Currently, consumers have submitted over 40,000 red cup photos in total.
  • Photos Of Real People Nearly every brand hires models for brand-exclusive photos and videos.  Even though the models are photogenic and the photos and videos are professionally shot, airbrushing still takes place.  Due to the self-esteem issues that airbrushed images inspire, many consumers are now demanding that brands cease airbrushing.  In response, some brands are foregoing models all together and turning to their fans for modeling photos.  One of those brands is Calvin Klein.  During their My Calvins campaign, the brand asked fans to post photos of themselves wearing the brand’s briefs and complete the phrase “I ______ in #MyCalvins.”  The campaign garnered almost 200,000 photos and 4.5 million interactions.

User generated content is an efficient yet economic method of obtaining high-quality content for your brand.  When utilized correctly, UGC will earn your brand increased interactions, increased exposure, and most importantly, consumer loyalty.