There is no disputing that video is king in today’s marketing world. And no one should be surprised when we say the short-form video app TikTok was the app of 2020. With more than 800 million active users worldwide, it is one of the fastest growing social media platforms in the world, presenting users with an alternate version of online sharing. It has changed the way we view comedy, music and activism, and the platform allows ordinary and relatable individuals to be viral content creators straight from their phones. Since the videos posted are under one minute long, it allows users to view reams of engaging content from different creators, learn about new trends and different communities in each session of “joyscrolling.”
With any new media channel comes the push to learn how to use it as a marketing tool. TikTok is so new that many brands and marketers are still unsure of its relevance or how to capitalize on the opportunities it offers. To bring the app into perspective for marketers, here is a brief overview of TikTok:
If a brand has a goal of reaching younger markets, TikTok could be an ideal channel with 41% of its users between 16-24 years old. But as is the case with most social platforms, as the app grows in popularity, the age groups will also expand.
The percentage of U.S.-based TikTok users by age:
- 10-19 – 32.5%,
- 20-29 – 29.5%,
- 30-39 – 16.4%,
- 40-49 – 13.9%,
- 50+ – 7.1%.
The info above shows that more than half of TikTok users are Gen Zers, a major trendsetting group. Next year, 74 million people in the U.S. will be part of “Gen Z”, which will make it the largest generation of all.
Another notable stat about TikTok is the amount of time users are spending on the app. The average user spends 52 minutes PER DAY watching content or creating their own, and on average, opens the app 8x daily. This leaves a lot of opportunity for your marketing campaign to be viewed by your key audiences.
Since TikTok is an entirely different social network with unique trends, features and user behaviors, it should be approached using a different perspective than other social networks. Start off with an in-depth competitive audit to understand how your brand and brands like yours fit into the app.
If your marketing team decides it is a good fit for your brand, it is recommended to start with material that builds your credibility on the app before releasing promotional material. TikTok users are quick to spot out material that feels misplaced, so be sure to craft messaging and video specifically for this app. Many marketers find that the best way to be acknowledged by TikTok users is to use real people to review or talk about your product or brand.
Even folks who don’t use social media regularly understand the phrase “going viral.” While TikTok offers opportunities for any user to go viral on the app, it is important to understand that there is no formula for going viral, no matter your marketing strategy. However, there are tips for working with the TikTok algorithm to garner more views, such as creating short 15-second videos to boost your video completion rate, the strongest TikTok algorithm ranking factor, or to engage with other TikTokers.
The app also has options for paid marketing support, with ad campaign starting at $50 per day. These ads can drive users to your website, a page in the app store, or promote your hashtag challenge on the platform. Brands are also able to create branded AR lenses, filters, and stickers for TikTok users to insert into their video content.
The three types of ads offered are:
- In-feed native ads – these are the closest to a traditional ad on TikTok. You can include website links and Order Now buttons on the ad. They are skippable ads, and you can use them in multiple ways.
- Hashtag challenge ads – with these, a user is served a banner ad that takes he/she to a page of instructions and rules of the featured challenge. You can use it to target specific audience segments.
- Brand takeover ads – these use a mix of images, GIFs, and video clips that link to a landing page or hashtag challenge.
Pro tip: Make sure your account is a TikTok Pro account so you can capture analytics from the platform, such as number of followers, monitor views and engagement, and more.
As brands are looking into creative ways for TikTok to boost their marketing efforts, they must be mindful that the app is more of an entertainment platform than a lifestyle platform. It is a great example of the continued success of video marketing and is a great alternative to long-form video marketing like YouTube. If you’re looking for creative ways to incorporate more video into your marketing strategies, give us a call. Our team has a knack for designing media strategies, rooted in the latest trends and data, that leverage video and platforms like TikTok to reach audiences effectively.