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What’s Your Story? How UGC Shares What Brands Want You to Know

As consumers, we like a good story – Nike wants us to ‘Just Do It,’ ‘America runs on Dunkin,’ and Apple encourages us to ‘Think Different.’ But we’re often skeptical when brands tell us to do or try something.

Revolution Digital  |  August 29, 2019
What’s Your Story? How UGC Shares What Brands Want You to Know

As consumers, we like a good story – Nike wants us to ‘Just Do It,’ ‘America runs on Dunkin,’ and Apple encourages us to ‘Think Different.’ But we’re often skeptical when brands tell us to do or try something. Should we buy into what they’re saying? As brands’ presences on social media continue to grow and consumers’ opinions become more vocalized, brands are looking for fresh ways to inspire fans. They want to communicate a sense of authenticity and believability that’s not coming directly from them. The solution? User-generated content.

Check out how these brands are using user-generated content (UGC) in different ways to their advantage:

Lay’s Is All Smiles This Summer
It’s no secret that smiling is contagious. For the second year in a row, Lay’s is donating $1 million and teaming up with Operation Smile, an organization that helps provide surgeries to children born with cleft conditions. The limited-run “Smiles” packaging returned to shelves on July 28th. The chip company is hoping to recapture the social media buzz that spread across Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter last year. The Smile campaign’s ‘Insta-worthy’ packaging, which is heavily centered on encouraging user-generated content, led to 700 #SmileWithLay selfies posted per day, resulting in more than 30,000 tweets and 10,000 Instagram posts during the 8-week run.

Gatorade Hopes for a Slam Dunk
Got skills? Gatorade created a new mobile app called ‘Highlights’ that allows teen athletes to produce “broadcast-quality” video clips with graphics and ‘motion stickers’ to showcase their athletic abilities. Not only are these videos popular to watch, just like the videos from the pro games that go viral, but young athletes can also put together their own highlights with hopes of impressing potential coaches or scouts. With Gatorade’s help, Highlights will add a little oomph to athletes’ clips, all while elevating the brand’s quality of UGC (#ThisHighlight) and broader awareness.

Bloomingdale’s Supports #ShoppingSelfies
If we’re not shopping on our phones, we’re shopping with our phones. In fact, nearly three out of four shoppers access their phone while in stores to read product reviews, compare prices or check out virtual reality try-ons. So, Bloomingdales teamed up with Carousel, a creative production company that features themed pop-up shops and events, to capitalize on this statistic and draw interest to Bloomingdale’s limited-edition Pride merchandise.

The New York 59th Street store’s “Pride for All” campaign revolved around philanthropy and sparked UGC through a series of in-store, ‘Insta-worthy’ creative displays. For every social media post with the hashtag #BloomiesLoveHousingWorks, the company donated $1 to Housing Works, a nonprofit that fights homelessness and AIDS.

Belvedere Asks YOU to Envision #ABeautifulFuture
Belvedere Vodka teamed up with actress, musician and activist Janelle Monáe to debut their limited-edition bottle. The launch is a continuation of last year’s collab, asking people how they think ‘A Beautiful Future’ would look. Fans responded with “messages of diversity, self-expression, inclusion and empowerment” in the #ABeautifulFuture space, some of which will be read by Monáe on Belvedere’s social and digital channels. This unique type of UGC content has been shown to garner stronger engagement than traditional ads by connecting more personally to the consumers.

Oikos Protein Highlights Community Through #FacesOfHustle
Oikos is all about the hustle, but what exactly does “hustle” mean? Oikos enlisted us (Rev-D) to help define it. So, instead of trying to broadly define it as a brand, we asked Oikos fans to show us what hustle means to them and how Oikos helps fuel those hustles every day. And so was born Faces of Hustle – a UGC series that showcases the many stories and people that make up the Oikos community. In doing so, Oikos has been able to highlight the diverse passions of its fans, foster community and honor the hustle.

It’s clear that UGC campaigns have two benefits: they not only create brand awareness and drive engagement with valuable, social media savvy audiences like Gen Zers or Millennials, but they also allow brands to build more authentic relationships with their fans. At Revolution Digital, we’re always looking to drive engagement in unique and fresh ways, especially when it comes to user-generated content. From creating out-of-the box campaign ideas to understanding your target audience, we’re here to help. If you’re interested in learning more, reach out to us at newbusiness@rev-d.com or fill out our Contact Us form and we’ll get back to you!

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