What is a UGC Creator on Instagram and TikTok? The 2023 Guide

Updated on November 28, 2022

7 min to read

Head of Social Media @ Vista Social

Published November 28, 2022

What is a UGC Creator on Instagram and TikTok? The 2023 Guide
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What is a UGC creator on Instagram and TikTok? You may have been asking yourself that exact question!

And you’re not alone; the term has amassed over 200M views on TikTok and is growing.

What is a UGC Creator on Instagram and TikTok?

UGC Creators are somewhat new to the social media world and are a major game-changer in driving sales!

So, what is a UGC Creator, why are they exponentially growing on Instagram and TikTok, and should brands be adopting them into their social media strategy?

Table of contents

What is a UGC Creator?

A UGC creator is a content creator who specifically creates content that looks like UGC—but it’s been paid for.

Typically, user-generated content (UGC) is known as content that’s been organically created by customers of a brand. This can be in the form of reviews, recommendations, and tips from everyday consumers!

What is a UGC Creator on Instagram and TikTok?

But, brands quickly found out that this form of content drives serious results for their bottom line.

In fact, a study found that nearly 80% of people said that UGC highly impacts their decision on whether or not to buy. This is exactly why so many brands love this type of content.

And so, the term UGC creator was born.

So, if UGC is “organic,” how are brands acquiring so much? Do people love their products that much? While we are sure that these brands have great products, these creators are only working for a fee.

Why should brands use UGC creators?

Consumers prefer to learn about products through a short video that highlights how the product looks, the benefits, and an ‘honest’ review—all under 1 minute.

According to Google, 40% of Gen Zers prefer to use TikTok over traditional search engines.

While UGC created by UGC Creators is not technically organic content, it is still highly effective. From an outsider’s perspective, the UGC creators look like organic customers.

User-Generated Content (UGC) stats for brands

Many brands and companies have experimented with hiring UGC Creators in the last few years.

Check out all of the UGC tools available in Vista Social to take your social media strategy to the next level! Sign up today.

The Best UGC platforms in 2023

Vista Social is the best UGC platform for brands, agencies, and creators to use!

UGC tools to reshare content

There are two ways to reshare UGC at your fingertips when using Vista Social:

  • Reshare content by searching Instagram hashtags
  • Reshare content by searching Instagram users.
The Best UGC platforms in 2023

Finding content by Instagram hashtags:

Instagram giveaways are often known for requiring people to enter in by submitting a photo and using a hashtag.

In Vista Social, you can quickly source UGC content by Instagram hashtag and directly publish it to your account.

Once you’ve found the content you like, you can:

  • Add it to your media library
  • Create a post that can be scheduled for a later date or automatically be published

This tool gives you the ability to view all of your UGC content in one place so that it can be easily found and organized.

The Best UGC platforms in 2023

Finding content by Instagram users:

Have you hired a specific UGC Creator for a campaign? This allows you to search for their Instagram username, and all of their recent content will be available for you to reshare.

This can minimize the waiting period for brands and companies to receive their deliverables if the UGC Creator has already posted to their socials.

The Best UGC platforms in 2023

From both of these tools, you are able to post directly to your connected profiles.

Add the desired media to your library, create your caption, add hashtags, location, tags, product tags, etc., and post.

The Best UGC platforms in 2023

UGC tools for review management

Many businesses use Facebook pages or Google Business to house reviews from their customers.

Brands and agencies should be working with a social media management tool that also offers features for review management.

With Vista Social, you can manage your online reputation through powerful integrations with Facebook, Google, OpenTable, TripAdvisor, Trustpilot, and Yelp!

Brought to you by Try Vista Social for Free

Try Vista Social for Free

A social media management platform that actually helps you grow with easy-to-use content planning, scheduling, engagement and analytics tools.

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Review management features in Vista Social:

  • Alerts: Be always in touch! Get timely notifications of new reviews via email, text, and in-app notifications.
  • Monitor: Track reviews from Facebook, Google Business, Yelp, TripAdvisor, OpenTable, and TrustPilot.
  • Respond: Response to Facebook and Google Business reviews right from your Vista Social dashboard.
  • Reports: Analyze review data, understand trends, spot important reviews, and share this reporting.

The ultimate UGC creator strategy

Hiring UGC Creators of all shapes and sizes will not only help your brand be more inclusive and diverse but also allow your potential customers to find someone who has created content for you that looks similar to them.

How to work with UGC Creators on TikTok and Instagram:

  1. Identify UGC Creators you want to work with 
  2. Create a campaign + specify deliverables 
  3. Obtain deliverables and post across social platforms! 

Step #1: Find UGC Creators on Instagram and TikTok

Before you start reaching out to UGC Creators on Instagram and Tiktok, do your homework.

Consider things such as:

  • Do they have good engagement (and is it real)?
  • Is your target audience a part of their followers?
  • Does their aesthetic match your branding and values?
  • What niche are they in?

From here, you can look over the content they have already posted and see what works or doesn’t work for them.

  • What content seems to be working for them the most? Which of their posts get the most comments or views?
  • Have they already posted a lot of UGC? If so, do you like the look of it? 
  • Is there anything on their page that has drawn your eye to it?
  • Is their target audience clear? Does their brand voice match that of yours? 
  • Do you notice any significant gaps in their content strategy? Do they post too many static images and need more Reels? What is their average Reels reach?

Something good to remember is that UGC works well because it looks and feels authentic, so you don’t want to be overly branded when it comes to this content.

Working with UGC Creators in a similar niche to your brand can make for a fantastic partnership and help you drive sales (and gain massive reach)!

When you’re ready to suggest a partnership, a direct message is a great place to start. If you can find an email address, try that too. But don’t send a mass email or generic DM.

Need help finding the right UGC creators for your brand? Work with a top-rated influencer marketing agency.

Step #2: Set your UGC creator campaign goals

Once you’ve found the right UGC creators for your brand, it’s time to outline the deliverables and expectations for your campaign.

It’s a good idea to provide some guidelines about what you’re looking for, of course. But don’t expect to stage-manage the entire campaign.

Decide what you would like the campaign to be focused around. For example, if you are a skincare company, you can create a campaign that is based around morning or evening routines and talks about the importance of self-care.

What is a UGC Creator on Instagram and TikTok?

When specifying details of the campaign, you can be as specific as which hashtags the creators have to use in order for the deliverables to count towards your contracted amount of content.

Once the campaign is clearly defined and the deliverables are specified, you are ready to hand it over to the creators. 

Step #3: Approve the sponsored UGC

This is the third step of working with UGC Creators on Instagram and TikTok. 

Once the content has been filmed, the UGC creator should send over a file of the content they’ve created for your brand before publishing.

Your team can review the UGC and send back changes (if needed) or approve the content.

Pro Tip: Make sure they also send over the caption they are using with hashtags included.

Step #4: Publish and add disclosures

Many brands can land themselves in hot water if they don’t have the proper disclosures associated with their sponsored UGC campaigns.

Hey Pepsi, where’s my jet?

If you haven’t watched the Netflix documentary on the story of Pepsi’s ambitious ad campaign, they teased the possibility of winning a multimillion-dollar fighter jet if you drank enough Pepsi—the only problem was they forgot to add disclosures saying they were just joking and ended up getting sued by a teenage boy who wanted the jet.


Although you want your content to appear as organic—it is still sponsored, and your brand (and the UGC creator) are responsible for disclosing this information.

Here are the key takeaways from the FTC’s requirements for sponsored collabs on social media:

  • DO disclose any material connections you have with a brand you are endorsing
  • DO make your disclosures clear, unambiguous, and conspicuous
  • DO make disclosures directly within your endorsements
  • DON’T mix your disclosures up with other phrases in a block of text
  • DON’T disclose only in the description of videos, podcasts, or images
  • DON’T make consumers click “more” in order to view your disclosures

If the UGC creator is planning on publishing the post to Instagram, we recommend using Instagram’s branded content tag.

It’s worth mentioning that this feature is only available for business and creator accounts on Instagram.

If you’re working with a creator that has a huge following, this can help the brand get more engagement and impressions on their own account (or vice versa) by having the same post appear on both accounts.

Here is an example of Instagram’s branded content tag from Lulu Lemon and Haley Ivers:

Wrapping up!

Remember earlier when we mentioned that reposting UGC content is made a breeze in Vista Social? Now would be the time to utilize those tools!

In circumstances where you are a brand with a physical product, and you’d like to tag it as well as tag the UGC Creator, Vista Social also has a feature that allows you to tag products.

Once all deliverables begin to appear on social media, you may start to see an increase in website traffic and follower growth, as well as an uptick in your sales. These are all signs of a successful campaign, and you should celebrate!

About the Author

Head of Social Media @ Vista Social

As Vista Social's Head of Social Media, Alexus Brittain leads the charge in steering the company's organic social media strategies. With a wealth of expertise gained from several years in the field, Alexus is deeply immersed in the ever-evolving landscape of social media, continually staying at the forefront of the latest trends and best practices.

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