Using TikTok for Marketing

Unless you’ve been asleep for a while, you will have heard of TikTok in one way or another – despite your business vertical and target audience age. Yes, it’s undoubtedly famous for viral dance trends, slightly silly challenges and lip-syncing videos, but it could well be the platform you haven’t yet considered to help accelerate your brand awareness. So, what actually is TikTok?

  • TikTok is a video-sharing social network that has taken the world by storm since the Covid-19 pandemic – it now has over 3.7m active users in the UK and is set to reach 10m users in the UK by 2021
  • Famous for viral dance trends, challenges and lip-syncing videos
  • Most popular with a Gen-Z audience – the largest share of its users (42%) in the UK are aged 18-24
  • There is the potential for anyone can go viral despite their following, for example, Later Media’s Head of Content Taylor Loren published a candle-making tutorial which went viral – she had 50 followers at the time yet gained an audience of 20k within 4 months.
  • Known as the trend forecasting app – great for social listening to uncover what’s going to be popular e.g. making sourdough during lockdown!
  • Nearly half of TikTok users are buying products from brands they see on the platform
  • The average daily time spent on the app is 41 minutes

TikTok for business marketing – is TikTok right for my company?

Let’s debunk the myth that your business needs to be light-hearted and less ‘serious’ to use TikTok – there are plenty of small businesses on TikTok who are adopting the network to increase their audience reach and build an online community around their business.

A lot of companies steer clear of TikTok if they serve more serious purposes, which is understandable – it’s supposed to be a light-hearted and informal platform. However, many unlikely business niches are getting on TikTok to broaden their audience and appeal to new customers, despite their vertical! Whilst such businesses aren’t typically characterised as ‘fun,’ they are using the platform to provide a customer-centric approach and service, and for support-related queries. One of our favourite examples is a swimming pool renovator, Crystal Clear Pools. They recently amassed 1.5m likes on a video of them demonstrating a swimming pool clean!

So, to summarise, if your target audience is of a Gen Z or millennial age range, and if you can curate TikTok content they’ll enjoy, then it’s most likely you will benefit from having a presence on this network and using Tiktok for brand marketing.

TikTok content marketing

You can execute TikTok content marketing strategies to;

  • Demonstrate how your business has helped clients or the local community
  • Celebrate achievements to build your business reputation
  • Do demonstrations and how-to’s
  • Curate interview-style Q&A’s

You DO NOT have to get involved in TikTok dances or tricks (the relief!), nor do you have to aim for platform virality (the double relief!). You can simply use TikTok for business to build a community around your brand and add value to your audience, to grow your following and customer base.

Remember, TikTok is not a new concept, just as much as video marketing isn’t either. The app’s predecessors include Musicly and Vine. Video has always been popular, and video marketing will only continue to grow – 94% of marketers who use video aim to continue doing so. It’s clear that video works!

TikTok for small businesses

Due to growing up in an increasingly digital and progressive world, Gen Z and millennials desire connection, inclusivity, and community – and TikTok provides its loyal users with this.

Gen Z and millennials know when they’re being marketed to – they can see through airy claims and hard sale attempts. This is reflected in TikTok’s audience habits – they follow the brands that exuberate relatability and personability, and dismiss those that use it for hard selling.

Small businesses should use the network to;

  • Build a community
  • Interact with customers and audiences
  • Develop and strengthen connections
  • Do social good
  • Add value to online users (crucial for social media success!)
  • Evoke positive emotions for audiences e.g. nostalgia, inspiration, motivation, comfort
  • Demonstrate your brand’s personality – business personas are what customers grow to recognise and love, as people buy from people.
  • Focus on the mission of your business – is it to motivate, educate, inform, inspire, humour, entertain, advise, support, teach or encourage? Whatever it is, you can channel this into your TikTok content marketing strategy and use TikTok as a platform to offer your chosen value to your audience.

Not satisfied? Here is some more advice for successful TikTok marketing for business.

Tips for marketing on TikTok:

  • Use hashtags and keywords relevant to your niche and target customers
  • Involve and collaborate with key TikTok creators within your industry niche to broaden your audience – use search terms and keywords that are relevant to your business vertical to identify the TikTok content and creators related to that subject.
  • Don’t think of TikTok as a hard-selling, business tool. Your content will flop! Use it to build relationships. 
  • Leverage sound. Consider how certain sounds and music can enhance your business’s appeal. Sound gives your video content a huge enhancement.
  • Capitalise on trends. TikTok is a trend-led network so throw your hat in the ring and have a go – it could gain you some loyal followers and customers!
  • Have SEO-rich captions. Be clear in your description regarding what your video is about so TikTok can index it the same way SERPs index and crawl websites. This will help your video be found more easily by online users interested in your niche.

Advertising on TikTok

Don’t make ads, make TikToks! TikTok helps brands engage with this audience by offering multiple ad formats that speak the ‘TikTok language,’ (remember TikTok is a brand itself, with its own personality!) seamlessly integrating with native content, yet delivering maximum results.

With a simple, speedy set-up process, LOCALiQ is a highly knowledgeable and skilled marketing agency who will help you achieve business success using TikTok for advertising. We will have you sharing your products and message with the platform’s community in no time.

Types of TikTok advertising campaigns

Tik-Tok advert formats all serve different purposes. Choosing the right ad format for a social media marketing campaign is the core of an apple. TikTok ad formats include:

In-Feed Video Ads – TikTok’s standard ad format, In-Feed, allows you to embed a video ad that auto-plays within a user’s For You feed. In-Feed ads are up to 60 seconds long (although the optimal duration is only 15 seconds!), play with sound on, and look & feel like native content due to them having the same user interface as organic posts.

Top View Ads – In this format, video can be up to 60-seconds long, offering an immersive viewing experience with no other competing content. Top View Ads are perfect for reaching brand awareness objectives as it guarantees an extremely wide reach and a high number of impressions.

Branded Hashtag Challenge – Designed to fit in with TikTok’s unique user-generated content (UGC) aesthetic, the Branded Hashtag Challenge is a way of engaging audiences by encouraging the co-creation of content. The format can be broken down into three placements within the app.

First, you have standard video ads appear in the In-Feed placement, encouraging users to take part in the challenge. Second, there is a featured banner on the Discover page, directing traffic to the Hashtag Challenge page (third placement) which is the central hub of the challenge, aggregating videos from around the world that were submitted for the challenge.

•Branded Effects – Branded Effects enable brands to embrace their playful side with the creation of shareable branded stickers, filters, and effects that users can utilise in their own video content.

These effects can be used in standalone campaigns or integrated into your Branded Hashtag Challenge for an even richer ad experience.

Branded effects are a great way to express your business story through advertising and content.

Brand Takeover – A TikTok Brand Takeover is a full-screen, high-impact set of ads that feature as the first thing a user sees when opening TikTok. Created for mass awareness, this format will also guarantee extremely high reach and great performance due to the entire screen being clickable, reducing the friction between the ad and the desired destination.

LOCALiQ can help you;

•Select a TikTok marketing goal you want your business to achieve, such as increased reach and awareness, website traffic, leads or sales

•Determine who you want to see your ads through the use of granular, meticulous audience targeting

•Create and design your videos and Tiktok advertising campaigns using TikTok’s in-app tools

To find out more about our wealth of social media advertising solutions and the different social platforms we use, talk to us today.

Related Reading:

Snapchat For Business Marketing

How To Build A Community on Social Media