What Is TikTok UGC & How to Get It

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August 4, 2022

What Is UGC on TikTok?

You've probably heard that running UGC ads on TikTok is the biggest open secret to scaling your business. Whether you're a DTC brand or an ecommerce business, it's time to get acquainted with this marketing strategy.

User-generated content (UGC) is original and authentic short-form video content that is usually published on social media. UGC comes in many forms including images, videos, reviews, ads, or testimonials.

Where Does UGC Come From?


This is your richest source for UGC and the most authentic one. For example, a customer might take a photo of their new purchase and post it on Instagram. In this case, they're creating UGC for your brand free of charge, showing off their purchase to their friends.

With social media, brands are looking for exactly the same thing: customers who love their products so much that they want to share them with their friends and followers.

Brand Ambassadors or Influencers

Influencers are people who have a large following on social media, and they can help boost sales for brands by posing as consumers of your brand. They usually post photos or videos of the product they're promoting, so their followers can check out the brand or product.

Although this is highly effective, it comes with a big caveat. In order to get this content, brands have to send free products on top of paying the influencer's professional fee.

This can become quite costly.

The bigger an influencer’s audience is, the higher they will charge to promote your products. This becomes especially difficult for smaller brands with smaller budgets.

Brand Loyalists

You can call them fans, enthusiasts, or loyalists, but they all mean the same thing: these are your dedicated customers who are patrons of your brand. They are the repeating customers who keep coming back, and they’re the ones who are more likely to tell their friends about your brand.

People are more likely to purchase from a brand with social proof. Brand loyalists are the best source for this type of UGC; they will promote your brand simply because they love the products you put out.

All of the mentioned are some of the best ways to source UGC for your brand; however, brands may not always have a constant flow of this content.

With the ever-changing social media landscape, brands must adapt fast to stay present (and relevant) in their customers’ social feeds.

And what happens when your brand cannot keep up with the demand for new content?

Website clicks go down.

Sales plummet.

Competitors will overtake you.

Your brand won’t survive the competition if you don't act fast.

That’s why it’s important to have a constant stream of new content to keep your audience engaged.

UGC vs. Commercial Ads

Imagine these two scenarios.

Scenario 1: You see a studio-produced ad on YouTube that could rival TV commercials. The ad has professional actors reciting a script explaining why you should buy their product. The product, actors, and the ad look amazing, but it all sounds too good to be true. It’s hard to resonate with something as highly-produced as that.

Scenario 2: You scroll through your social media feed and see a person who looks like your everyday Joe. They look like someone you would work with at the office. They talk about some pain points that you can relate to and their authentic story as if they’re telling it to a friend. They recommend a product that will solve your problem because it worked for them.

Which ad will convince you more to purchase their product?

The decision would vary person-to-person, but here are the numbers.

According to The State of UGC 2021 Report, marketers agree on the following:

  • ​​93% agree that consumers trust content created by customers more than content created by brands.
  • 75% know that adding UGC makes brand content more authentic.
  • 59.8% agree that authenticity and quality are equally important elements of successful content.

It’s no surprise that UGC ads are crushing it on social media, especially TikTok, where most of the audience is millennials and Gen Z.

However, there is so much competition that brands have to fight to be seen online.

With this plethora of choices available to them, consumers are becoming more selective about the brands they purchase from.

This sink-or-swim competition between brands makes it harder and harder to survive in the market, and your brand needs to make the right decisions in order to make it.

How to Get UGC For Your Brand

Get Your Consumers Involved

A great way to get UGC is to get your consumers involved. You can let your customers do the work for you! It’s one of the easiest ways to get your brand out there, and it doesn't cost a thing.

Just let your consumers know that you listen to them. Whether it’s about what they think about your product or letting them share their favorite purchases, they'll be happy to participate in the exchange for the exposure you can give them.

This not only gets you the content you need but also keeps you connected to your consumer base.

It also helps them feel like they're part of the process so they'll be more invested in your brand's success, which can increase loyalty and repeat purchases down the line.

Here are a few things and ideas to take note of when using UGC from your consumer base:

  • Make sure that the user has given permission to your brand to use the image or video they have shared.
  • Encourage them to tag their friends and family members to get more people talking about your brand.
  • Make sure that the person posting UGC isn't just saying good things about your brand; ask them for constructive criticism as well!

Partner With Influencers

If your brand has the budget, then getting UGC through influencer marketing should be in your toolbox. It’s a great way to boost your brand presence and reach.

Influencers are paid big because they have a significant influence on their followers’ purchasing decisions. Their dedicated followers will check out whatever products or brands they're promoting, so every post these influencers make about your brand will send clicks to your store.

But working with big fame comes big money. You will have to pay big bucks to get these influencers on board.

Work With Content Creators

Influencer marketing may not fit every brand’s budget, and that’s where content creators come to the rescue.

Content creators are skilled individuals who act on camera, film content, and edit videos for brands.

They are skilled in doing product reviews, filming, and talking about products authentically. Because they are specifically skilled for UGC-style content creation, these creators know how to perform on camera in ways that will resonate with people on social media.

Their entire purpose is to get people to purchase the product they’re promoting based on the “people trust people” principle.

I know what you’re thinking: content creators sound great! They seem to be the solution to every brand’s problem! Why would brands bother with influencers when content creators exist?

This is the point where we break the bad news.

Not all content creators are made of every brand’s dream.

To elaborate, here’s the amount of time it would take to build and maintain an in-house Creators Program for your brand, on a weekly basis:

Before Production
  • Finding talented creators and reviewing their applications: 2 hours / day
  • Writing creative scripts for each creator: 1 hour / script
  • Gathering info, building and maintaining creators’ records system: 2 hours / day
  • Keeping track of inventory, accrued costs, and production: 1 hour / day

After Production
  • Keeping creators on production schedule: 1 hour / day
  • Reviewing content: 1 hour / day
  • Editing content: 3 hours / creative (unless creators do the editing which tends to be hit and miss)

And that’s not all.

We’ve screened through 1,500+ applications and here’s what we learned about working with content creators.

Not all of them are great.

Some of them are talented but are a pain to work with.

Some of them will not follow your production schedule or house rules, just because.

Some of them just make bad content, period.

You will catch yourself constantly paying for bad content that you know you can’t use.

On top of the time and work it takes to build and maintain the Creators Program, you will need to build a team who can make that program work. That comes with a lot of financial costs to keep this program in-house.

  • Creative Strategist: $8,200 per month
  • Casting Assistant: $6,100 per month
  • Video Editor: $6,500 per month

Source: Glassdoor, California 2022

On top of that, there is a big gap in what creators will charge for a single creative.

While low-cost creators might charge you $50 per creative, more “experienced” creators will charge you $1,000 to $3,000 per creative. That doesn’t even include the business cost you’re shouldering to give and ship them free products.

Work With UGC Agency

Here’s the good news: you don’t have to do it alone.

10X ROAS caters specifically to DTC brands and ecommerce businesses to help them save time, scale their paid advertising, and dominate social media.

Our full-service creative production services handle everything from creators to production to advertising.

Our robust system and team handle everything for you so you can focus on what matters most: your business.

Here’s how we do it:

  • Screen through hundreds of creator applications and work with only the top 1%
  • Put creators through a 6-step screening process, including a paid trial project
  • Prepare creators before working on projects for our clients
  • Prepare storyboards and creative scripts
  • Submit selected creators that reflect your target audience
  • Prepare everything you need to ship out the products
  • Review the content from creators
  • Handle creator payments
  • Edit the content
  • Deliver final creatives

Our team has produced hundreds of creatives with our top creators that have helped brands be seen by millions of people, and scaled some creatives to $250,000 and beyond.

If you're an ecommerce business ready to scale your advertising, we guarantee to outperform your best Facebook or TikTok creative or you get unlimited ecommerce video ads and UGC-style videos completely free until we do.


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