A scepticism identification model (SIM) is a framework that helps managers assess the effectiveness of consumer-generated advertising.
Recent research finds that user-generated content (UGC) can trigger two opposing reactions from other consumers – scepticism and identification. While there is an increase in identification of the viewer with the ad creator, there could also be an increase in scepticism about the expertise or ability of the ad creator to generate appropriate content (i.e. persuasive advertisements).
Factors that diminish scepticism include low-involvement and high distraction contexts, whereas factors that enhance identification involve increasing perceived similarity and a sense of affiliation or social connectedness between the viewer and content developer. These principles of SIM are applicable to other types of user-generated content as well.
In January 2013 the Open Forum, an online magazine, ran an article commenting on the success of user generated content, for example, by uploading pictures of themselves wearing the clothes the company wishes to advertise, in marketing for Burberry and other big name brands.