Use Video to Increase Reach + Social Connection

UGC (User-Generated Content) Videos is a new category of marketing that has boomed in the Tiktok era of short videos and influencer marketing.

When looking at entering any niche, word-of-mouth is the most powerful form of marketing and that’s why video is the rage these days as one viral video on Instagram or Tiktok can become the inflection point upwards for an entire product or brand.

But finding UGC Creators is not an easy space to navigate, and in many ways it is only in its infancy.

From those who are emerging specialists in the space, there are a series of key factors that can greatly increase the probability of success for a UGC Video Ad:

  • the videos must have a sense of energy and authenticity to drive some form of emotion from the audience
  • the UGC Brief – where the general Dos/Don’ts and Deliverables are defined – will make or break the project
  • details matter relative to the video thumbnails, intro hooks, visuals, etc.
  • have at least 3 different variations for each video

The more street cred that a certain Creator/Influencer has, the more they are likely to charge to price relative to expected outcome(s) is the key.

I’ve seen UGC creators work for us from $75-$400 per video. Standard rates are $150 with 3 hooks for the first videos. Rates are higher if UGC creator has proven videos with multiple brands.But some UGC creators just charge too much with no justification or authority.

The Performers

For $150 and a chance to get the name of a new product/service out into a certain niche in the market, it could be worth the risk/reward for many.

Taking UGC Short Videos a step further is the emergence of 30 min+ live shopping sessions with experts and influencers in certain niches to really ramp up product sales. Social Commerce is being underpinned by both UGC Shorts and Live Long Videos. Where to even start though?

UGC Marketplaces for Video Ads

Finding the right types of influencers is hard enough as a starting point; ensuring that they can deliver on their end of the deal is even harder. As the market has evolved, several types of marketplaces have sprung up to meet exactly this demand:

There are multiple additional possible ways to source UGC Creators across different countries/platforms/languages.

There are risks to going after freelance UGC Creators directly (no quality control) but there are also rewards (lower fees). There is an entire ecosystem of Publishers in the middle who cater to the mid market space, a space that starts to look more and more like the traditional agency media model.

The upshot to finding emerging, talented, and underutilized Creators relative to certain niches is that the ROI on an experimental ad could be exponential.

In the end, it’s just another possible avenue to explore for any company that is a twist on the paid advertising model. The upshot is that it takes place on the medium (video) where the majority of the younger generations are gravitating to in the market.

Live Social Shopping Platforms

Live shopping is booming and in many ways has probably only just begun its rapid ascension as the social economy spills out from Asian markets into more Western markets.

social commerce market growth forecast

The original growth in the market started in the Asian markets (first China, then India) on social platforms where video + commerce were plugged in together (ie. WeChat).

Recently, it has expanded into the North American market where brands are pairing up with Creators and testing the waters. The market is exploding with the following platforms serving as examples in the increasingly crowded marketplace:

Dealing with Influencers and Creators for a Live Shopping experience is clearly much more involved and expensive than a 60s Ad running on a platform like Tiktok.

As the market moves progressively in that direction, however, it is likely that more and more small-scale brands trying to establish themselves in certain niches will try and test their luck on Live Shopping platforms.

Video Ads and the CAC Cost Argument

Through many years of research on CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) across multiple consumer categories, we have seen that CAC is a very important factor in the business model. Relative to DTC and eCommerce brands, it has trended upwards on paid media channels for the last several years.

This has caused many DTC-Retail brands to blow-up in 2022/23 following the boom in the pandemic years.

What Live Shopping achieves – relative to LTV and the core retail/DTC business model – is much better conversion rates (~10X), higher AOV (70%), and lower return rates (11X). The upside achieved has to be weighted against the costs to execute such an endeavor, but more and more consumers are discovering Live Shopping and enjoying it.

While Coresight Research suggests 45% of US consumers in 2023 are on livestream shopping to find a good deal, a ballooning plethora still are on it to watch something new, just pass time, or discover new products.

BuyWith CEO

Much like innovations such as The Shopping Channel in the ’80s created a new sales paradigm on the back of the television, Live Shopping platforms are creating end-to-end shopping experiences that are much richer and deeper than platforms like Tiktok and Instagram.

One Viral Video Can Create a Breakthrough

In a sea of competition and constant barrage of content, it is isn’t easy to create viral online content that both gets peoples’ attention and converts. But the reward is definitely worth it for some entrepreneurs and owners who are trying to tap into certain niches:

  • it is important to research the segment first and see what platforms they ‘live’ on
  • UGC Videos are typically delivered natively via platforms like Tiktok, whereas Live Shopping is more typically a no-code plugin that interfaces with existing eCommerce solutions
  • execution of a successful campaign will likely take a lot of trial and error, so planning and budgeting for that is key, as other marketing channels may offer better cost benefits

Nevertheless, the market loves video and social commerce is set to explode, so keep UGC Videos and Live Shopping on your radar.