If you’re asking yourself ‘Do I need to show my face for UGC?’ you’re not alone. In 2022, it has been Googled 4.2 million times. Yes, million.
The short answer is yes, it’s possible. There are plenty of UGC creators who have managed to create high performing faceless UGC. But can you build a business around it? Well, that answer isn’t quite as simple.
While faceless UGC is a viable option, it comes with its own set of challenges and considerations. In this post, we’ll delve into the world of faceless UGC and three ways to make it work…
Can You Do UGC Without Showing Your Face?
There is a short answer, which is yes. You can do UGC without showing your face. Here’s a UGC example that does not show the creators face:
Hands, laptop, voiceover. No-one needs to ever see who’s behind the camera.
But, and there’s a big but. Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should. Without showing your face, it’s going to be significantly harder to get UGC work. This isn’t me trying to be an a*shole. By choosing not to show your face, you’re just limiting your opportunities — and in a competitive space such as UGC, you’re starting on the back foot.
Showing your face:
〰️ Builds Trust: When an audience sees your face, they see a real person behind the content. Showing your face builds trust, authenticity and enables a stronger connection. This goes for the audience of the brands you’re working for, but it also goes for the decision makers at the brands. If they can’t see you, why would they hire you?
〰️ Boosts Engagement: People engage with people. Showing your face enables you to convey emotion and personality through more than just your voice. When you’re trying to hook viewers in mere seconds, this makes a difference.
〰️ Increases Relatability: I’m not going to beat around the bush here. Sometimes brands hire you to be the face they don’t have. You might be younger, older, a different gender or race. There’s a reason that brands develop customer personas, and it’s to enable them to effectively market to them. By showing your face, you can easily embody one of these personas.
Not showing your face sets you ten steps back. Organic UGC retainers are almost certainly out of the question, and truth be told, your time is probably better spent elsewhere.
But, if you’re hell bent on becoming a faceless UGC creator (AND you’re willing to work harder than 99.9% of other UGC creators) there are some routes you can go down that can increase your chances of success.
UGC Without Showing Your Face
If you’re creative enough, you can carve out your own space in the UGC industry — even without showing your face. This would be my four go-to’s for how to pitch your services as a faceless UGC creator:
Voiceovers & Mashups
Mash ups are a great way for brands to repurpose existing UGC content and raw footage from various creators. In order to tie this together in a new ad, they’ll need a new voiceover. This could be your in. Find brands that run UGC ads in high volume, and approach them with a UGC script read offer they can’t refuse. A bulk package of X amount of voice overs with various hooks and CTAs for them to test. No face, just voice, but be sure to have results to back it up.
To get this, you’re going to approach 4-5 brands and offer to do this for free in exchange for the ROAS, the CPA and a glowing review for your portfolio.
Niche Down: HARD
As a new UGC creator, almost everyone will tell you not to niche down. If you don’t want to show your face, that’s exactly what you’re going to do. There are some niches that lend well to not showing your face, these include:
Travel UGC generally focuses on UGC for Airbnbs, hotels and apartments. Learn how to use a drone to create unrivalled footage, invest in the equipment needed to create killer accommodation tours and go over and above when delivering vacation content. I’d also pitch complimentary organic content such as guides for the local area: best bars, best restaurants, best hot dog stands. The rule of thumb here is to over deliver.
You can easily craft faceless UGC by showcasing your culinary expertise. Present step-by-step recipes with engaging visuals of the cooking process and the final delicious dish. These don’t involve showing your face at all, and can be pitched across the FMCG sector. Not just food, think cooking utensils, slow cookers, supplement brands, alcohol. The world (or kitchen) is your oyster.
My final suggestion isn’t really UGC at all, but rather, affiliate marketing. UGC takes time, effort and energy, but if you’re not keen on being in frame, that time, effort and energy can be better spent building up an affiliate marketing business.
Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing strategy where you promote products or services from other companies and earn a commission for each sale or action generated through their promotional efforts. This is typically done through unique affiliate links or codes that track the referrals. People often assume this means influencer, but no. In 2023, you can create a niche website, or a Pinterest account and work on building traffic.
I’m not ‘The Affiliate Marketing Club’ so I won’t go in depth here, but Google is your friend.
UGC doesn’t always require you to show your face: if you’re creative and up to the challenge, there are certainly ways for you to find your own feet in the industry. It’s not going to be easy, but it can definitely be done.