The State of User-Generated Content 2021

This content originally appeared on January 21, 2020 as part of the Future of Marketing weekly email series. Subscribe here.

Welcome to Future of Marketing

Each week, we send you the most relevant trends, resources, and strategies in social and user-generated content (UGC) from leading marketers and brands around the globe.

This week, history was made (via live stream). We’re discussing: 

  • The State of UGC in 2021
  • Rising marketing themes
  • Inclusivity and UGC

TINT published The State of UGC 2021 report 2021, a deep look into how brands increasingly leverage the voices of their fans, customers, influencers, and teams – plus winning strategies for the next 12 months and beyond. Grab your copy here

UGC in 2021

Marketers need to be picky about the projects they work on. The State of User-Generated Content 2021 report by TINT states marketers struggle to balance limited resources with increasing expectations – with 72.2% of marketers reporting more responsibilities because of the pandemic. 

At the same time, 41.2% of marketing professionals rank engagement as their top KPI

Add changing consumer behaviors and rising themes like social commerce, virtual and hybrid events – and you start to realize that marketers (and especially social media managers) have an immense responsibility to keep up… AND build, manage, and scale brand reputation across multiple fast-changing platforms

More than half of marketers surveyed (52%) believe time is a challenge when it comes to social and visual content production – and 51.5% of respondents indicated a reduction in marketing budget.

Now, marketers are redefining “influencer marketing” by turning to user- and employee-generated content to build trust, maximize time & budget, and focus on things that impact revenue (like turning customers and employees into advocates). In fact, this year’s report finds that 93% of marketers agree that consumers trust content created by people more than content created by brands.

Read the full State of User-Generated Content 2021 report here.

Inclusivity on Social

Much of the digital world was watching, live-tweeting, or tagging #Inauguration on Wednesday. This event was not only a reminder that hashtags and UGC carry tremendous potential (when done right) – but it also showed people around the world that anything is possible.

A hidden gem was 22-year-old Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history. After her captivating performance, users began advocating for her to be verified on Twitter. Within minutes, Twitter responded by updating the creator’s profile with a blue checkmark – opening a new realm of opportunities.

This is a perfect example of using UGC as feedback to make decisions that demonstrate you’re listening

Not to mention, Twitter recently invited a deaf person to test out Spaces AND the White House website now has Dark Mode

Prediction? Demand for accessibility will only increase. Start by adding closed captions and alt text to your content. 

What we’re learning

  • The Rise of Employer Branding [BrandStreet
  • Inclusive design for social media [Hootsuite]
  • Reviews are the most important information source [ecommerceDB]
  • Amazon offers Biden resources to roll out the vaccine [TechCrunch]
  • NEW BLOG: 93% of marketers agree that consumers trust content created by people more than content created by brands!!! [TINT]

#brandcrush: Feeding San Diego 💘

Each week in #brandcrush, we highlight exceptional brands that are channeling their customers’ voice to connect more authentically with their audience.

Established in 2007, Feeding San Diego distributes more than 31.2 million meals each year with a mission to end world hunger

“Before COVID-19, 1 in 6 children faced hunger in San Diego County,” the non-profit shared. “Now, the need has increased by 50% and tens of thousands of families are struggling with hunger, with devastating consequences.”

Their recent holiday campaign – Give Hope, Share Hope – received an immense amount of support from the community, who gave back in various ways.

Feeding San Diego also spotlights people they serve and volunteers who are making a difference in a UGC gallery (shown above) on its website.

The campaign “almost doubled the number of meals raised through its annual holiday fundraising efforts, bringing in a total of over 10.1 million.”

Office hours ⏰

Every once in a while, we gather our team of experts to answer your burning marketing questions about UGC. Interested in joining? Let us know.