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So many brands are constantly fighting for our attention every single day – we see this in the form of celebrity endorsements, sponsored posts by brands, and paid social media influencers (Fun fact: Have you noticed that for every 3-5 posts on your feed, Instagram throws in a sponsored post?)
It’s no wonder that consumers crave authenticity more than ever, and it’s not just the millennials.
What builds authenticity?
Let’s keep it real – authenticity influences and builds trust. Consumers want it, and brands should be delivering more of it! The question then is, what kind of content best resonates with customers and takes the consumer-brand relationship to the next stage?
The answer is user-generated content, or UGC for short. Such content is seen as the most authentic since it’s created by people just like you and I. Everyday consumers are now the top influencers globally – the recent Cision/ PRWeek global survey showed that family and friends have the most impact on consumer behaviour, taking up 59% of the pie.
How can brands leverage UGC to their advantage?
This insight presents a great opportunity for brands. Whether it’s for social media platforms or a brand campaign, UGC is a powerful tool that bridges the gap with consumers.
Singapore Tourism Board (STB) saw the potential, as it recently rolled out a new campaign ‘Beats of Singapore’ in partnership with Spotify. The objective of the campaign is to elevate Singapore as a travel destination by using music – the universal language of mankind – as a clever medium, and who better to promote Singapore but Singaporeans themselves!
By getting Singaporeans to select their favourite song that represents a certain memory, place or activity in Singapore, STB is able to build a whole playlist of music that best represents the country through the different pillars of food, entertainment, adventure and culture, without having to do the heavy-lifting.
Once the database has been built, travellers from all around the world can then use the microsite to gather recommendations on things to see and do in Singapore, based on the music they enjoy. Check it out here.
Apple’s done it too, and with great success. The multi-channel campaign, #ShotOnIphone, encourages users to share photos taken with the iPhone and the content generated is then used to populate Apple’s official Instagram page, @apple. This campaign has been running for the past three years since it started in 2015 and has helped build a 10 million strong community of like-minded fans that’s almost cult-like.
Is there a wealth of UGC waiting for your brand to tap on? The next time you’re crafting your next campaign, don’t forget to leverage on your consumers to drive authenticity and influence decision making.
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