When I first started talking to my co-founders about Kredd and UGC, I was confused. It seemed that I, the resident elder millennial, had a different definition of “User-Generated Content” from the kids.
When I used to think about UGC, it was really and truly just that: user-generated content. There was no telling when a person might create it, what they might say, or how good the content actually was - and it was free. Anything content we paid for, regardless of how many followers that creator had or their price tag, fit squarely in the “Influencer” category.
So when we started talking about paid UGC, it sounded like an oxymoron. Isn’t Paid UGC just working with freelance content creators? Or micro, micro influencers?
In short, yep.
If this is confusing to you as a marketer who has previously understood the original definition of UGC, I have to say: I completely agree with you. It makes zero sense. And far be it from me to shift the tides of culture: but I’m about to try.
Instead of calling it UGC, we should just be calling it CGC- or Creator-Generated Content. Because that’s what it actually is. It’s not users who spontaneously post about your product without you asking: it’s actually creators being paid for their craft.
We might not change how the industry talks about UGC - though here’s hoping - but in the meantime, you can see everyone at Kredd refer to UGC as UGC/CGC in an effort to be more transparent about what it is we do.
And whether you call it UGC, CGC (or freelance creator, or micro, micro influencer…)- this content is here to stay- or it’s been here all along.