User-Generated Advertising, The Effects of Consumer-Created Brand Videos on Brand Attitudes: An Abstract
Technological advances and social media facilitate the public’s creation and broadcasting of their own brand-related material. In doing so, they are performing marketing functions traditionally carried out by firms. To that end, brands are no longer wholly in control of their marketing and advertising content.
This study aims to evaluate the effects of user-generated advertising (UGA) on attitudes towards the Ad (Aad), brand (Ab), as well as the relationship between Aad and Ab, and to evaluate the effectiveness of firm-generated advertising (FGA) as compared to UGA. Furthermore, it provides marketing practitioners with an explanation of UGA effectiveness and recommendations on how to manage this phenomenon.
The study was conducted in three stages. First, a content analysis was conducted on a sample of 230, brand-related UGC videos from YouTube in order to obtain information about the characteristics of the branded-video population. This involved the analysis of video features in relation to the brand, creator’s position, the use of advertising appeals (i.e. emotional or rational) and advertising techniques used.
Second, from the videos analysed, a sample of 25 videos were selected and validated through a panel of expert judges to confirm their valence as positive, negative or neutral with regard to the brand advertised. The valence was defined by way of an analysis of the overall tone of the video, the degree of brand satisfaction or dissatisfaction of the video creator, whether the creator recommended the brand to others and if the video parodied or ridiculed the brand.
Finally, from the videos approved by the judges, a global, low involvement and often advertised brand was chosen for an Internet-based self-completion questionnaire conducted on a convenience sample to ascertain the effects of UGA and FGA on Ab. This rationale also considered that participants’ attitudinal responses may depend on existing cognitive-based assumptions about the brand.
The research findings reveal that exposure to UGA has an effect on attitudes towards Ab and Aad, making them considerably more negative. With regard to the valence of the videos, exposure to negative UGA resulted in the lowest scores in participants’ Ab and Aad. Conversely, exposure to firm-generated advertising (FGA) had no effect on participants’ existing attitudes Ab and produced positive Aad.