Select Page

A case study about user-generated content and tips on how to use it

Watch this video, if you haven’t seen it already.



Since the video was posted a month ago, it’s had almost 30 million views on TikTok alone. It’s attention has been covered by Good Morning America, The Today Show, Allure and MANY others.

The product Trini posted started selling out at beauty supply stores like Sephora and Ulta just 48 hours after the video was posted. Not long after, it was out of stock on Peter Thomas Roth’s site. Isn’t that sick!?

Peter Thomas Roth himself commented about the sensation: “This is a 10-year-old product, for the last 10 years, I have done so many before-and-afters, and hers is the one that went crazy.”


Because “consumers are 2.4x more likely to say user-generated content [UGC] is authentic compared to brand-created content. [And] 79% of people say UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions,” says this survey.

User-generated content is any form of content created by an unpaid individual about a company or their offering. People trust UGC and it influences which services and products they choose.

Compare Trini’s video to this post by the company.

Trini’s UGC has a couple things going for it that PTR’s post does not.

ONE: Video was a better format than images
You’re smart and probably get that the video showed the process better than a side-by-side image and that editing seems more likely in the images than the video.

TWO: Virality is more achievable on TikTok than Instagram
We’re not discounting this as a factor, but our next point is the real clincher.

THREE: Trini’s video is full of authenticity.
Trini was a real person that didn’t seem to benefit personally from advocating PTR products. Even though the product was raved as “witchcraft” by comments, it had the unmistakable ring of reality through it.

What you should do about it

Make sure your product is actually useful
For people to share something good about your product or service, the product or service has to be…well, good. It has to be great if you want people to share it without being asked or incentivized to.

Don’t waste existing UGC
Set up a system that finds and uses UGC. A simple repost to your brand’s page is better than letting it disappear.

Realize all brands can use and inspire UGC
B2B companies can generate UGC, plenty have.

Encourage it
There are lots of options here.

  • Build an online forum for people to help one another with questions about your service or product
  • Run a competition centered around UGC
  • Share a hashtag in your packaging asking for them to post about the product
  • Incentivize leaving a review

Again, endless possibilities here.

Reward people for creating it
Show your appreciation! This can span from a simple “thank you” comment to sending a gift and even to a monetary reward. For something with lots of eyes on it, like Trini’s post, people will pay attention to the way you treat those who spoke up about your brand.

Sign off

Now don’t you dare forget that your measly attempt at marketing well can make the universe a bit of a better place. Yeah, that was a weird compliment, but take it and run.