If you have opened your Instagram App any time over the past 12 months, chances are you’ve already come across one or two reposted videos from TikTok.
Lip-syncing, dancing or re-acting funny voice-overs – That’s what most people know TikTok for. But there is so much more to it.
What started out as a rather small app targeted towards the teens and tweens of the world, TikTok now bears a huge marketing potential for businesses of all kinds. In fact, TikTok has over 500 million monthly users around the world. That makes it one of the 10 most popular social networks. (Datareportal, 2019)
What is even more important is that the number of adults turning to TikTok is progressively growing. Currently, 41% of all users are Millenials or Generation Z. (Globalwebindex, 2019) However, the number of adults joining TikTok has been steadily growing.
What is TikTok?
Nowadays known as TikTok, the lip-syncing app was initially created by ByteDance under the former name of Musical.ly. It allows users to create short 15-second videos with musical overlays and decorate them with visual and sound effects.
Its main popularity roots in the fact that it enables creators to be highly creative with their content and explore various fun options. In the beginning, videos were mainly focussing on lip-syncing. As TikTok grew in popularity, more enthusiastic and technically advanced members took their chance. They now are the most famous influencers on TikTok.
The content shared is then presented on the Discover page of TikTok where all sorts of videos are curated. This way, users don’t even have to follow anybody. They will automatically be presented with entertaining videos.
This is what TikToks Home page looks like:
Why is TikTok relevant to your Business?
The TikTok app might still seem like a playground for you.
That is why, in the next few paragraphs, I am going to show you exactly how much potential TikTok bears and why it is important to keep in the back of your mind.
Build Trust Quickly
Although growing, TikTok still has the character of a vastly untouched platform. To this day, it is mainly used by private people, influencers and a couple of celebrities only.
This is what makes the trust levels high and engagement rates even higher. A message conveyed on TikTok will have a much bigger effect than when it’s sent on Instagram.
Why? Because Instagram is already deep into the marketing game. As of now, TikTok is mostly untouched. The first businesses launching on TikTok will, therefore, have an easy game building lasting relationships.
Homemade Video Content
A study showed that more than 50% of all consumers started engaging with a brand after having watched a video provided by them on Social Media! (Brightcove, 2019)
On the other hand, video content is also the most difficult content to create. It takes time, effort and technical proficiency.
Or so you think!
TikTok makes ist as simple as it gets to create video content that can be shared all throughout social media.
5 Steps to your TikTok Strategy
Step 1: Audit your Target Audience
As we have settled before, TikToks audience is growing by the minute. Nowadays, more adults are using this platform than ever before.
It’s important to keep in mind that a full 41% of all TikTok users are between 16 and 24 years old. That makes it the ideal social network for businesses targeting tweens, teens, and Millenials.
Now, take a look at your business and ask yourself the following questions:
- Who is your ideal customer?
- What age group / generation are you trying to target?
- What are the interests of your target audience?
- Does TikTok fit in with the rest of your marketing strategy?
- Is your target audience actually on TikTok?
Once you’ve checked these points off, you will have reached a decision whether TikTok will actually be relevant to your business or if you would simply be throwing money down the drain.
This is crucial to determine if the investment of time and energy into TikTok is worth the potential payoff.
Step 2: Settle on Content Types
Much like any other Social Media Strategy, it is important to come up with the content types you will be sharing on this medium. Always keep in mind that for content to be successful on TikTok it needs to be approachable, unique, and fun.
Fortunately, with TikTok being a video-centered platform, there are unlimited ways to leverage content ideas. The best approach is to have fun with it and seek inspiration in daily life.
- Product-centered businesses can share step by step product guides
- Restaurants can show 15-second versions of their food being made
- Boutiques can create highly beloved try-on videos
- Clothing brands can use TikTok to share their latest collection in before-after videos
- Higher Education businesses can provide content found on campus
Behind The Scenes
One of the most effective ways to build a humble presence that will invite users to interact remains sharing behind the scenes information – or in this case, videos.
After years of being washed over by marketing messages, consumers are becoming increasingly skeptical. TikTok offers the possibility to share raw, unedited videos.
Show how things run in your office, daily business or simply have fun with everyone on your team.
If there is one thing that TikTok users adore, it’s challenges.
Encourage other TikTok users to (re)-create a piece of content around a topic that is connected to your business. This could either be performing a certain action or recording a video with a specific song in the background – maybe even your slogan? Then, ask them to post it under a certain branded Hashtag.
Keep in mind that the challenge shouldn’t be too narrowly defined. As a creative bunch, TikTok users like to be able to make the content their own and add personality to the end result.
Hashtag Challenges are a fun way to build traffic and engagement. One or two people participating in the challenge will soon lead to a Snowball-Effect of various individuals taking part and spreading the word.
Step 3: Create an Editorial Plan
Now that you have determined what types of content you will use to fill your business’s TikTok account, it’s time to settle on posting time and frequency. Much like Instagram, Facebook, and Co, TikTok is a merely content-based platform that people turn to in order to be entertained. Thus, fresh content in regular intervals is necessary to keep (potential) followers engaged.
So as to please both, existing and potential new followers, posting about 5 times a week is a steady technique to build a lasting TikTok presence.
It doesn’t stop there, though. For videos to be successful on TikTok, they need to be creative. TikTok is known for its imaginative users. This means that people trying to build a big brand on TikTok should be two things: Inventive and fearless.
When it comes to the posting time, keeping your target audience in mind is the first step.
Where do they live? Adapt to the time zones.
What do their daily routines look like?
When are they most likely to look for entertainment on their phones? That’s the time when you should be posting.
The global best posting times can be found in this chart:
(Influencer Marketing Hub, 2019)
Step 4: Consider Influencer Marketing
Particularly for people who have never heard of this app before, TikTok is a lot to take in. Video creation remains one of the biggest challenges for Marketers, so why not try a little outsourcing?
Sometimes, it’s a wise idea to leave things to the professionals. In this case, the professionals are 16 to 24-year-olds on TikTok!
Collaborating with influencers is the perfect opportunity to get in touch with your target audience or a young audience that can influence the buying decisions of their parents without having to invest hours and hours in creating engaging video content.
Find your influencers
Influencer Marketing on TikTok allows you to spread your message to a large number of engaged people who would not have noticed you otherwise. Through the influencer, they take notice of your brand and start to interact with it. Most importantly, the audience of the influencer should match with your target audience. You should always opt for TikTok influencers that appeal to the same niche as your target customers.
Keep in mind that bigger isn’t always better. With influencers, relevance is more important than reach. The graph below visualizes how engagement rates decrease with an increasing number of followers.
(The Influencer Marketing Factory, 2019)
This doesn’t stop there – it is also a fact for other platforms like Instagram too.
But how do you find the right influencers?
When settling on an influencer to collaborate with, always consider which types of videos this person creates and if these are the right ones to attract your target market. Think make-up videos, risky stunts or classic lip-sync. What is your audience drawn to? The possibilities are virtually endless!
Related Topic: How To Leapfrog Competition Using Influencer Marketing
Step 5: Supercharge through TikTok Ads
After months of giddy waiting, TikTok has finally released the option to place ads within the TikTok app. Still pretty new on the advertising game, TikTok is not as saturated with ads as other platforms. Instead, content is still mostly organic. This poses an unbelievable chance for the first businesses to hop on TikTok Advertising.
Currently, TikTok Advertising offers 3 different ad types:
These ads will appear instantly after a user opens the TikTok app, ensuring that all eyes will be on it. From there, it can lead to another video on TikTok or an external website.
Prices depend on the exact pricing model. However, generally one can expect to pay from $50,000 to $100,000 to have an ad running during the App Takeover Period.
These ads are placed in the feed as part of the video queue. This makes them feel more organic and, in turn, natural.
Native In-Feed Video Ads are the most affordable ones. Usually, the come out at about $10 per CPM.
Apart from organic Hashtag Challenges, the TikTok Team also allows advertised Hashtag Challenges to encourage other users to participate in.
Sponsoring a Hashtag Challenge through TikTok comes at a flat fee for 150.000$ for 6 days. That might seem like a lot in the beginning. But wait until you hear the results.
Utilizing a Hashtag Challenge on TikTok brought Taco Bell an increase of 64% in Sales. Furthermore, this Ad Type only took Calvin Klein to generate 10 times the engagement that the Justin Bieber Underwear campaign racked up in a mere 24 hours!
To put it in a nutshell, TikTok bears a huge potential, in particular for businesses focusing on Generation Z. If you are trying to target a bit of a younger audience, this is your place to go.
However, it doesn’t stop there. With TikToks audience growing by the minute, it is sure to soon capture the business universe in no time.
What is your opinion? Will TikTok be the next big hit or is it gone as fast as it showed up on our smartphone screens?
Tell us in the comments!
When networking wizard Bettina is not working on the next big idea, then she is focusing on how to constantly improve workflows, and systemizing the “stuff that is not so much fun but needs to be done”. She believes in giving and that being kind gets you a long way.
You might spot her as a keynote speaker, a guest lecturer at universities, or a mentor at StartupLive or Greenstart by Climate and Energy Fonds Austria.
Bettina describes herself as a foodie, travel addict, and her team sees her as a true leader, who always encourages everyone she is working with.