As a marketer, you can no longer ignore TikTok. The app has taken the world by storm, with over 1 billion monthly active users worldwide. And it's not just for Gen Z – TikTok is quickly gaining popularity with older demographics as well. So what is TikTok marketing, and why is it so important?
I’ll take a closer look at that and discuss different ways you can use the platform to boost your engagement and sales. If you want to get started with marketing on TikTok, this post is for you.
Believe me, TikTok offers a unique opportunity to reach a massive audience of engaged users with creative content. Whether you’re a small business or a large corporation, there’s a place for you on TikTok.
In this TikTok marketing guide, I will cover everything you need to know about the platform and how to make the most of it.
TikTok is a video-sharing app that allows users to create and share videos, on any topic. When it was first launched, TikTok allowed only 15-second videos. Since then, they have increased the limit multiple times. Currently, TikTok videos can be between 15 seconds to 10 minutes long.
Image via AR Droiding
In March 2022, the platform increased the limit and said that they wanted brands to monetize the platform. This shift allows brands to keep their audiences captivated for longer on the platform, without them having to watch several parts of a video series.
Compared to Facebook and Instagram, TikTok is the new kid on the block. But it has quickly gained popularity among Gen Z users.
The app offers a variety of features that allow users to be creative and engage with other users. TikTok has something for everyone, whether you're looking for funny videos, musical performances, or DIY tutorials.
What’s interesting about TikTok is that the platform distances itself from calling it a “social media platform.” In fact, Khartoon Weiss, the head of global agency and accounts at TikTok called it an “entertainment platform” at a conference.
Here’s how she described the platform there:
“The audiences that love and build and create and connect with TikTok, they say they check Facebook, and they check Instagram and they check Twitter and they check Snap and they check things. But they don’t check TikTok. They tell us they watch TikTok.”
- Khartoon Weiss, the head of global agency and accounts at TikTok
What is TikTok Marketing?
TikTok marketing is a form of social media marketing that involves creating and sharing short videos on the TikTok app. With TikTok marketing, you can promote products, services, or brands, and build relationships with potential and current customers.
TikTok marketing strategies include creating engaging content, using hashtags effectively, and collaborating with other users. I’ll share some TikTok marketing tips later in this post.
As a business owner, you might be wondering why you should care about TikTok. I’ve already mentioned that it’s a popular platform that has a large user base. If that’s not enough to convince you to start TikTok for business marketing, take a look at these statistics:
- TikTok has been downloaded more than 3 billion times.
- TikTok users spend over 1.5 hours every day consuming its content.
- TikTok generated an estimated $4.6 billion in revenue in 2021.
- TikTok had over 78.7 million users in the United States in 2021.
- In June 2022, TikTok was the most downloaded app for iPhone.
If you're thinking about using TikTok for marketing, you're probably wondering who it's best suited for.
The answer is:
Businesses of all types and sizes! Whether you're a small business owner, a solopreneur, or part of a large company, TikTok can be an effective marketing platform.
If you produce creative and attention-grabbing content, you could see some serious results in terms of sales and brand awareness.
There are a few different types of businesses that could really benefit from using TikTok for marketing purposes.
Businesses that sell products or services that appeal to younger audiences might find TikTok to be a good platform for reaching out to potential customers.
Additionally, businesses with a creative bent may also do well on TikTok, as the platform lends itself well to producing short, entertaining videos.
Finally, any business that is looking to reach a global audience may also find TikTok to be a helpful tool, as the app is available in many different languages.
If you're looking to get your TikTok marketing started on the right foot, then you'll need to set up a TikTok business account. Before I tell you how to create a business account on TikTok, let me explain how it is different from a regular TikTok account.
A TikTok Business Account is a special account type designed for businesses and organizations. It offers all the same features as a regular TikTok account, but with some added benefits specifically for businesses.
Image via Digital 38
When you switch to TikTok for business, these are some extra features that you can access:
- Partner with TikTok influencers.
- Run paid ads.
- Track performance in real-time.
- Spot trends via analytics
- Redirect traffic to your external websites.
If you're looking to use TikTok for business marketing, you'll need to set up a business account.
Here's a step-by-step guide on how to do it:
Step 1: Download the TikTok app.
Step 2: Sign up for an account or log in or sign up for an account.
Step 3: Click on the “Me” tab that you see at the bottom.
Step 4: Go to “Manage Account.”
Step 5: Switch to Business Account.
Step 6: Tap “Next.”
TikTok will then ask you a few questions about your company. Simply choose the appropriate answers, and finish going through the set-up instructions.
As a business, you need to be where your customers are. And these days, that means being on TikTok. But before you start posting videos willy-nilly, it's important to create a TikTok business strategy.
When it comes to TikTok marketing, one of the most important things you need to do is define your target audience. Without knowing who you're trying to reach, it'll be difficult to create content that resonates with them.
One of the best ways to start defining your target audience is by thinking about their demographics. This includes factors like their age, gender, location, and interests.
If you're selling skateboards, your target audience is likely going to be young people who are interested in extreme sports.
Here are all the factors that you should look into when defining your target audience:
Image via Natsumi Nishizumi Design
Once you have a general idea of who your target audience is, you can start to get more specific. This is where you'll need to think about things like their needs, wants, and pain points.
If you're selling skateboards, your target audience might be interested in things like safety gear, stylish clothing, and accessories that make skating easier.
Once you have a good understanding of your target audience's demographics and psychographics, you'll be well on your way to creating content that resonates with them.
Who do you want to reach with your TikTok content?
As a business, you need to make sure that your target audience is aware of who you are and what you do. This can be done by creating a strong brand identity.
Your brand identity is the combination of your name, logo, slogan, and colors. It includes your values, mission statement, and overall aesthetic. It should be unique and memorable so that people will remember it when they see it.
While formulating your TikTok marketing strategy, think about the kind of image you want to project. To help you get started, here are some brand personalities you can consider:
These are just some options, you don’t have to stick to just these personalities. You can be quirky, sweet, funny, or anything else that matches your brand.
Keep in mind that your brand identity is what sets you apart from other businesses on TikTok. Once you understand what your brand identity is, you can create content that aligns with it.
Here are some tips for defining your brand identity:
- Do some soul-searching: What are your business’ core values? What message do you want to communicate to your audience?
- Research your competition: Take a look at what other businesses in your industry are doing on TikTok. What kind of content are they posting? How can you make your content stand out?
- Get feedback from others: Ask your friends, family, and employees what they think of your business. What words come to mind when they think of your brand?
Once you’ve taken the time to define your brand identity, you can start creating content that reflects it. Keep in mind that your TikTok marketing strategy should be an extension of your overall marketing strategy.
By aligning your TikTok content with the rest of your marketing efforts, you’ll create a cohesive brand identity that will resonate with your target audience.
There are a few things you can do to research what kind of content performs well on TikTok in your niche. First, take a look at the “For You” page and see what kinds of videos are being recommended to you.
The “For You” page on TikTok is a personalized feed of videos for each individual user. The algorithm that curates the “For You” page is based on interests, interactions, and other factors. The “For You” page is a great way to discover new content and famous creators on TikTok.
You could also try searching for specific hashtags related to your topic. It will give you an idea of the TikTok challenges that are trending and the TikTok hashtags you can use in your content.
You can also look at other popular accounts in your niche and see what kind of content they're posting. Pay attention to the types of videos that get the most views and engagement.
Once you have a good understanding of what kinds of content perform well on TikTok, you can start creating your own videos.
Remember to focus on quality over quantity. It's better to post one great video than ten mediocre ones. With a little bit of research, you can create content that will help you stand out from the rest of the TikTok users.
TikTok has a variety of special features that make it stand out from other social media platforms. If you want to win at TikTok marketing, you need to make sure you are familiar with everything that the platform has to offer.
One of TikTok’s most distinctive features is its editing tools. With just a few taps, users can add filters, AR effects, and speed up or slow down their videos. This allows them to create highly creative and original content that stands out from the rest.
If you are a brand, you can even create custom AR filters to boost your brand recognition and recall value.
Here is an example of how Gucci used this for their TikTok marketing strategy:
Another thing that sets TikTok apart is its audio effects. You can choose from a huge library of trending TikTok songs and sound effects to add to their videos. This feature allows them to create videos that are not only visually appealing but also have great audio quality.
What’s more, you can also add your original recording to your TikTok videos and then add effects to it. Here are some effects you’ll find on TikTok:
What’s more, TikTok has a duet function that lets users record themselves alongside another video. This is a great way to collaborate with other users and create unique content together.
There are many other special features on TikTok, but these are some of the most popular and interesting ones. If you're looking to create more interesting and engaging content, be sure to check out all of the features that TikTok has to offer.
It can be tempting to go into TikTok marketing without a clear plan or strategy. After all, the platform is known for its fun and lighthearted content.
But if you want your TikTok marketing to be effective, you need to set goals that align with your business objectives. Some common business objectives that could inform your TikTok marketing goals include:
- Generating leads
- Increasing brand awareness
- Driving traffic to your website
- Engaging with customers and prospects
- Building customer loyalty
- Increasing sales
Once you've identified your business objective, you can start setting SMART goals for your TikTok marketing. For the uninitiated, SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Based. Let's break each of these down:
- Specific: Your goal should be clear and well defined. For example, “Increase brand awareness” is not specific enough. A more specific goal would be “Get 100 new views on our TikTok videos every day.”
- Measurable: You should be able to track your progress and measure whether or not you're meeting your goal. In the example above, you could measure this by looking at your view count every day.
- Achievable: Your goal should be challenging but achievable. If your goal is too easy, you're not pushing yourself enough. But if it's too difficult, you'll never reach it.
- Realistic: This ties in with being achievable – your goal should be something that's possible given the resources you have. For example, if you only have a few hundred followers, it's probably not realistic to set a goal of getting a million views per video.
- Time-Based: Your goal should have a deadline so that you can stay on track and measure your progress over time. In the example above, we've given the goal a timeframe of “every day.”
Step 6: Smart Analytics for TikTok Marketing
Just like other similar platforms, TikTok provides an analytics feature that lets you track your social media activity.
If you want to access TikTok analytics, here are the steps you can follow:
Step 1: Open your TikTok profile and click on the three horizontal lines that you see in the upper right corner.
Step 2: Tap Creator Tools and go to Analytics.
Step 3: Check the dashboard for the metrics that you want to check. You’ll be able to check the number of views, likes, audience territories, traffic source types, and other metrics there.
If you want to get the most out of your TikTok marketing, you need to have a content calendar. This will help you plan and publish your content in an organized way so that you can make the most of your time on TikTok.
There are all sorts of videos you can create for TikTok marketing, from creative and funny ones to more informative and helpful content.
Depending on your brand and what kind of message you want to get across, you'll have to decide which types of videos will work best for you.
However, some basic video ideas that could work well for most brands:
- Lip Sync Videos: Lip sync videos are a great way to get your brand out there on TikTok. By using popular songs and lip-syncing to them, you can create videos that are both creative and engaging. Plus, since TikTok is all about music, these types of videos are sure to get noticed.
- Trending TikTok Challenges: There are a lot of different challenges that you can try out on TikTok in order to market your business and jump in on the latest trends. You can use these challenges to get people engaged with your brand and to get them talking about your products or services.
- Duet Videos: To create a duet video, start by finding a popular TikTok user who has a similar target audience to your own. Once you've found someone, film a short video that includes both of you. Be sure to include your branding in the video so that viewers will remember your business.
- Giveaway Contests: Organizing a giveaway contest is a great way to increase your brand awareness on TikTok. It can also be used to generate leads and grow your TikTok following.
- Livestream: Livestreaming is a great way to connect with your audience in real-time and build a connection with them. It's also a great way to show off your products or services in a more personal way. And, if you're creative enough, you can use livestreaming to market your TikTok account and get more views.
- How-to Videos: These videos are always popular and can be very helpful for users who are looking to learn something new. For example, if you are in the fashion industry, you could offer quick styling or fashion hacks.
- Behind-the-Scenes Footage: Give your followers a peek into what goes on behind-the-scenes of your business or brand. Whether it is a chaotic day right before an event or a chill workday, make sure you keep your audience posted.
- Product Demonstrations: Show off your products in action and give people a better idea of what they do and how they work.
- User-Generated Content: TikTok is all about user-generated content, so why not encourage your followers to submit their own videos featuring your products or brand? This is a great way to get more engagement and interaction from your audience.
So there you have it, some ideas for different types of videos you can include in your TikTok marketing strategy.
Once you start publishing content, it is important to track your progress regularly and adjust your strategy when needed. Along with that, you should focus on ensuring that your account doesn’t stagnate in terms of followers and engagement.
Here are seven ways you can grow your TikTok account:
Post quality content: This should be obvious, but it's worth repeating. If you want people to follow you on TikTok, you need to post videos that they'll actually want to watch. That means creating entertaining and/or informative content that appeals to your target audience.
Use hashtags: Hashtags are a great way to get your videos seen by more people. When you use relevant hashtags, your videos will show up in the feeds of users who are searching for that particular topic. So if you're trying to reach a specific group of people, be sure to use the appropriate hashtags.
Trending topics: Another great way to get more eyes on your videos is to post about trending topics. People are always searching for new content on TikTok, so if you can tap into what's popular at the moment, you'll be more likely to succeed.
Collaborate with other users: Collaborating with other users is a great way to grow your following on TikTok. When you team up with someone else, you'll be able to reach a whole new group of people who might be interested in your content.
Be active: Finally, one of the best ways to grow your TikTok following is simply to be active on the platform. The more you post, the more chances you have of being seen by potential followers. So make sure you're regularly creating and sharing new videos.
Create ads: TikTok offers a variety of ad products that can help you get your videos seen by more people. If you're serious about growing your account, consider investing in some ads.
The last point is important for businesses that want to establish a sizeable following on TikTok.
I am going to elaborate more on how you can use TikTok ads for marketing in the next few sections.
If you are planning to use TikTok ads for marketing, you’ll need to make a TikTok Ad Account. In this section, I’ll walk through all the steps you need to follow to set up your own TikTok ad account and run an ad campaign on TikTok.
Setting up your TikTok Ad Account will only require a few minutes. Go to TikTok Ads Manager and fill in the required information.
You will need to choose your billing region or country and enter if you are planning to use the account for a business or an individual. Once you are done, click on the “Next” option.
After this, you’ll need to enter your email address along with your password. Next, check your email account for a verification code from TikTok.
Alternatively, you can also sign up on TikTok Ads manager using your phone number. In that case, you’ll get the verification number on your phone. Enter the code, agree to the given T&C, and click on the “Sign Up” button.
Once you’ve finished this, you will be able to see your dashboard. Finish the initial setup based on the given instructions. After that, your account will be ready to create TikTok ads.
Step 2: Simple or Custom Mode
Once you’ve created your account, you’ll be greeted with this page.
There are two modes when creating TikTok ads, simple mode or custom mode.
If you’re just starting your TikTok journey, I recommend choosing simple mode.
Step 3: Set Your Goals
The first thing you need to do in the ads manager is set your advertising goals.
In this section, you can select from four different, pre-defined goals for your ad.
- Traffic: The goal of an ad focused on traffic is to send the ad to as many people, in as many countries possible.
- Community interaction: The goal of an ad focused on community interaction is to get more people to visit and follow your page.
- Lead generation: This option is to gather contact information from potential customers by adding contact forms to the ads.
- Website conversion: This ad goal is for when you want to drive valuable actions on a website.
You can only choose one of these goals in simple mode.
Step 4: Set Your Target Audience
Now that we have set the goal of our ad, it’s time to choose who we want to see our ad.
From this page you can choose to set your target audience to a specific country, age, gender and language.
You can also select interests that your audience might have, as well define their viewing habits.
You can also select “automatic audience,” which will make use of AI to decide which audience suits your ad the best.
Step 5: Set Your Budget
Next, enter the budget for your ad campaign.
Step 6: Create a New Ad
After you set up your ad, TikTok lets you configure the ad. You can either upload an image or a video for your ad creative.
While you are making your creative, keep in mind that different ad formats have different recommended ad specs on TikTok. This will make sure that your ad appears properly on TikTok and other platforms.
Once you’ve created your ad, you will get to preview it. This will tell you exactly how your audience will see it on TikTok. Before you submit your ad for review, you can tweak it while previewing it.
Next, you can also ad a name for your ad and enter the ad text. TikTok only allows 12-100 characters for the text that will above your TikTok ad. In addition to this, you will also get to add the call to action you want for your ad. Based on your goals, you can opt for “Learn More,” “Book Now,” “Contact Us,” “Sign Up,” “Download Now,” “Shop Now,” or “Apply Now.”
Once you select the appropriate call-to-action, you’re just a step away from finishing the process. Click on “Submit” to send your ad for review.
TikTok Promote is a unique paid feature that you can use if you want to boost your existing ads. With this feature, you can choose a goal to focus on.
Do you want to increase your website visits, boost video views, or gain new followers? Along with choosing a goal, you can also define your ad budget, choose a target audience, and schedule the overall duration of your TikTok. When you are done, you can start your promotion.
Your job is only half done once you launch a TikTok ad. You should also be able to measure how it is performing and if the campaign is paying off. You can check how well your ad is doing by checking metrics like conversions, impressions, clicks, and more.
There are a variety of ad types available on TikTok, each with its own benefits. In this section, we’ll take a look at all the different types of TikTok ads out there along with how they appear on the platform.
- In-Feed Video: These TikTok ads appear on the For You page for TikTok users.
- Brand Takeover: This ad enables you to take over a user’s screen for some seconds. After that, it appears like an in-feed ad.
- Hashtag Challenge: These ads feature in the “Discovery” section of TikTok.
- Branded Lenses/AR Content: These ads appear as lenses, branded stickers, and other AR content. TikTok users can use them to make their own content.
- Spark Ads: These ads enable you to sponsor brand or product-related organic content.
- Image Ads: These types of ads appear as if an image is placed in a video. They appear via the news feed apps of TikTok. [Babe, TopBuzz, and BuzzVideo]
- Video Ads: These ads appear in the “For You” section. They are full screen and appear for anytime 5 to 60 seconds.
- Pangle Ads: Pandle ads is available only in certain countries. Pangle is an app that has an integration with TikTok to offer banner ads, video ads, and native ads.
- Carousel Ads: Carousel ads can feature up to 10 images. They appear in TikTok’s news feed apps.
- Sponsored Influencer Content: Influencers work with brands in these types of TikTok ads to promote a specific brand or product.
With big budgets, companies can afford to be everywhere, but what about the little guy? Can a small business use TikTok advertising?
The short answer is: Yes! Small businesses can absolutely use TikTok for advertising. In fact, TikTok is a great platform for small businesses because it allows you to be creative and connect with your audience in a fun and engaging way.
Plus, TikTok has a lot of built-in features that make advertising easy, such as hashtags, duets, and reactions. And, best of all, it’s affordable. You can reach a large audience for a very small budget.
So, if you’re a small business owner and you’re looking for a new way to advertise, TikTok is definitely worth considering. It’s a fun, creative platform that can help you connect with your customers in a whole new way.
According to a report, the cost per mile on TikTok is as low as $1. This makes it cheaper than other platforms like Facebook. If you want your TikTok ads to be effective, it is recommended that you invest at least $500 at a campaign level. For group ads, you can go with even $50.
However, keep in mind that different sorts of TikTok ads naturally have various pricing structures. While there are no clear-cut pricing details out there, I searched the web to get a sense of what you can expect. Here's what I found:
|In-Feed Ads||$10 per impression (min. 600 impressions are prepaid)|
|Brand Takeover Ads||$50,000 per day (5 million impressionsare guaranteed)|
|Hashtag Challenge Ads||$150,000 per week|
Now that you know all the basics of TikTok marketing, here are some tips that will help you get the most out of the platform. Whether you have a fashion brand or a food business, TikTok has marketing potential for everyone.
There are a few reasons for this. First, when you participate in a trend, your brand is exposed to a wider audience. People who might not have otherwise seen your content will now be exposed to it because they're participating in the same trend. Secondly, trends show that your brand is current and relevant.
If you're able to keep up with the latest trends, it shows that you're a brand that's on the cutting edge and that you're willing to experiment. Finally, participating in trends can be a fun way to show off your brand's personality. When done right, it can humanize your brand and make you more relatable to your audience.
Some brands have found success on TikTok by producing entertaining and creative content that doesn't necessarily promote their product. This can be a great way to connect with potential customers on a more personal level and build brand awareness.
However, it's important to find a balance between promotion and entertainment. Too much of either one can turn users off and cause them to unfollow your brand. It's all about creating engaging content that will resonate with your target audience.
If you can find the right mix of promotional and entertaining content, you'll be well on your way to success on TikTok!
When you partner with relevant TikTok influencers, you can tap into the influencer’s existing audience. This is an audience that is already interested in the type of content that the influencer produces, which means they are more likely to be interested in your brand as well.
Plus, partnering with TikTok influencers gives you access to creative talent and resources that you may not have otherwise. By working with an influencer who is already experienced in creating successful TikTok content, you can save time and money while still getting high-quality content.
Also, partnering with TikTok influencers can help build trust and credibility. When consumers see that your brand is endorsed by an influencer they trust, they are more likely to trust your brand as well. This can be especially important for new or less well-known brands.
For all of these reasons, you should consider partnering with relevant TikTok influencers when planning your TikTok marketing strategy.
When it comes to advertising on TikTok, it's all about standing out from the rest. And one of the best ways to do this is by using unique and eye-catching visuals. A lot of people don't realize how important visuals are when it comes to marketing on TikTok.
If you want your ad to be successful, then you need to make sure that it's visually appealing. One way to do this is by using a variety of backdrops. By using different backdrops, you can add more depth and dimension to your ad.
This will make it more visually appealing and help you capture the attention of your target audience. Spend some time editing your TikTok visuals and making them stand out more.
In addition to using a variety of backdrops, you should also consider using trending tracks. TikTok is all about music and videos, so using popular tracks is a great way to get your ad noticed. When choosing a track, make sure that it's relevant to your brand and that it fits the overall tone of your ad.
If you are looking for some inspiration, check out these three successful TikTok marketing campaigns. You’ll get a good idea of what works on the platform.
To celebrate National Avocado Day, Chipotle Mexican Grill came up with the #GuacDance challenge on TikTok.
As a part of this TikTok campaign, they encouraged guacamole lovers to display their avocado-related dance moves, taking inspiration from Dr. Jean’s “Guacamole Song.” During a six-day period, the challenge received over 250,000 video submissions.
@chipotle TFW guac is free. Online/in-app only 7/31 #GuacDance ♬ The Guacamole Song – Dr. Jean
Gymshark launched the 66 Days Challenge in 2019 to increase brand awareness and reach. For this TikTok campaign, the brand encouraged its followers to document their fitness journey.
By using the hashtag #gymshark66 and tagging @Gymshark, followers submitted their ‘after’ and ‘before’ videos. In total, the hashtag generated more than 193 million views.
Fenty Beauty has really upped the TikTok marketing game. They started a TikTok branded house where TikTok influencers live together and produce content for the platform. Their content is fresh, natural, and engaging. It’s a big shift from traditional style of TikTok marketing.
1. Is TikTok marketing effective?
The short answer is yes, TikTok marketing can be effective. The app has over 1 billion active monthly users and is continuing to grow. It's a great platform for promoting products and services to a wide range of people.
2. How can I use TikTok to market my business?
By regularly creating high-quality content, engaging with your audience, utilizing popular hashtags and TikTok sounds, and collaborating with influencers, you can ace TikTok marketing.
3. What type of content is most viewed on TikTok?
Some popular types of TikTok videos include dance videos, comedy content, ASMR videos, animal videos, science experiments, and more.
To conclude, TikTok marketing can be a great way to reach out to potential customers and promote your brand. There are a few things to keep in mind when using this platform, such as ensuring that your content is creative and engaging and that you are using hashtags and keywords effectively.
By following all the tips mentioned in the post, you can set yourself up for success with TikTok marketing. Who knows, you might just become the next TikTok sensation. Do you have any questions about TikTok marketing? Please feel free to mention them in the comments section.