If you’ve asked yourself “what the heck is up with this TikTok app” or “should my business be on TikTok” then this post is for you.
Keep reading to learn more on how to create an effective TikTok marketing strategy.
There’s no escaping it now… TikTok is here to stay – and it’s proving to be a powerful advertising platform.
So if you’re planning to advertise your business on TikTok, you’ll want to stick around and read this post about TikTok marketing.
Today, we’ll be sharing:
- A bit about what makes TikTok – tick and why people like it
- Organic marketing strategy, examples, ideas, and tips
- Where to look for paid marketing strategy
- Plus, we share video ideas to help you get started!
TikTok Marketing: What TikTok Is & How the Algorithm Works
What is TIkTok?
Tiktok is a short-form video app that took the world by storm in 2018.
If you’re like us, you’ve downloaded the app out of morbid curiosity slash as a joke, but now you hum 15-second soundbites to yourself all day long.
How the Algorithm Works
The TikTok algorithm is a recommendation system.
These systems work to rate or predict what a user will like based on their activity on the site or in the app.
Tiktok uses a sophisticated recommendation system that users say gets very close to reading their minds.
Here’s what happens when you upload a new video:
- TikTok shows your video to a small number of users in between popular videos.
- TikTok measures how much engagement you get (likes, comments, shares, downloads).
The more engagement your video gets, the more accounts it will be shown to.
- TikTok uses the velocity of engagement to decide how widely to share your video.
So if your video suddenly gets 90% more engagement than normal – buckle up – you may be going viral.
Why is it easier to go viral on TikTok than Instagram (or anywhere else online)?
If you think about your experiences in each of the apps, they’re not the same.
On Instagram, when you log in, you drop in your home feed which is full of the posts of people you follow and interact with.
Until very recently, you had to seek out new accounts or see your friends recommending them.
Now we have the Explore Feed and IG is experimenting with Feed discoverability, but it’s still not great.
On TikTok, though, the accounts you follow are kept in a separate tab, the “Following” tab, from accounts you don’t follow, the “For You” page.
When you log into TikTok, you’re dropped on the FYP, which means you’re looking at new content.
Most users spend their time scrolling on the FYP, so they’re constantly seeing new ideas and creators.
By the way, that example we shared used the desktop version of TikTok (yes, that’s a thing)…
…but you also land on the FYP in the mobile and tablet apps as well.
A Quick Tour Around The TikTok App
Before we dive into TikTok marketing strategy and tips, let’s do a quick tour of what’s inside the TikTok app.
Navigate using the panel across the bottom. When you’re HOME, you have two options for viewing.
We’ll show you these in the app since that’s where most of you will be working from:
1. For You Page
The For You Page (or FYP) is where you’ll discover new accounts and videos.
Your FYP recommends videos to you based on your viewing preferences (and get sometimes eerily close to things you’re thinking about).
No two users will see the same videos on their FYP – the customization is out of this world good.
This shows you the most recent videos and live activity from the accounts that you follow.
If you only want to see content from accounts you know, that’s where you’ll want to hang out.
This is where you can browse trending hashtags, videos, sounds, topics, and see what’s new on TikTok.
The plus button is what you’ll click to access the camera and library of sounds and effects so that you can create your own TIkToks.
This houses all of your notifications and messages.
It shows all other account activity as well, like updates on videos you’ve reported or account status changes.
You can view and edit your profile details here including (from left to right) photo, username, bio, etc.
You can also view videos you’ve uploaded, videos you’ve liked, and private content.
Why People Like The App
Users have fallen in love with the app, connecting with the short-form content spurred on by 2020.
The algorithm is excellent at finding videos you will like and shows them constantly.
We were honestly a little shocked at how good it was at predicting what we’d be interested in.
The authenticity (or illusion of authenticity) appeals to a large portion of the base…
…and one of the things that keep you scrolling is that you’re never sure what’s going to pop up next.
You’ll find yourself saying “okay, just one more” for an hour while you try to pry yourself away.
Running Paid Ads on the Platform For Your TikTok Marketing
If you want to learn more about running paid ads on the platform, we recently published a post on TikTok Ads for Beginners.
Since we went in-depth in that post, we’ll skip that for now to save time. We recommend you check that out next though.
And if you want to know how to design TikTok ads, we also have a great tutorial for that, so be sure to read it too.
Growing Organically On The Platform
As we’re sure you know, growth on any platform takes time, dedication, and consistency.
But TikTok values new content and new accounts, so it’s an excellent place to see a lot of growth rather quickly.
This works especially well if you can connect with your niche audience.
Let’s look at how to do that.
TikTok Marketing Strategy
The strategy you use for your marketing on TikTok is going to be different from the strategy you use on other platforms.
We’ll briefly cover the best strategies for organic growth on TikTok as of late summer 2021.
Let’s dive in!
1. Make Content That is Educational or Entertaining (or both)
Users on TikTok engage most with content that is educational, entertaining, or both, called “edutainment”.
Accounts that are only focused on selling a product, and not helping the audience, are going to fall flat, quickly.
2. Use Your Audience Engagement to Your Advantage
Did you know that you can reply to a comment with a video?
This is a great way to increase social media engagement (because your comment may be shared with everyone).
Plus, it helps you out with content creation (you don’t have to brainstorm all the video ideas by yourself).
Another way to help boost engagement is by being active in your comments section and in the comments sections of other creators.
TikTok is built on the feeling of community, and creators who don’t engage with their audiences are quickly abandoned for creators who will.
Even big brands are spending the time to comment on videos (even videos with only a few hundred views).
3. Use Sounds to Find New Audiences
Sounds are half of the magic on TikTok marketing.
They make or break your video and can help even the smallest account go viral (use the right sound at the right time and boom. Rocket fuel!)
You can use your own sounds or use other creator’s sounds. The best way to go viral and find new audiences is by using other’s sounds.
Here’s how you’ll find new sounds and see suggestions for trends:
- Open the TikTok App.
- Click the (+) button, like you’re going to create a video.
- Click “Sounds” at the top of the screen.
- Visit the “Recommended” section or “Playlist” section, which captures different trending or viral sounds circulating sounds in real-time.
4. Use Hashtags and Description to Add Context
On TikTok, you can add a description using a combination of text, emojis, and social media hashtags.
You do have a pretty tight character limit; only 100 characters, including your hashtags.
For effective TikTok marketing, keep your descriptions short and sweet (or funny, or spicy).
Add context to your video, and use hashtags.
Don’t use more than 4 or 5, and make them relevant to your topic, niche, or audience. Use trending hashtags when applicable.
5. Get Folks to Follow You Off TikTok
No matter what platform you’re building an audience on, if it’s a third party…
…you need to be focusing on sending your growing audience to platforms you control like your:
- physical stores,
- mailing list.
If you were to lose your TikTok account tomorrow (like you were banned, hacked, and deleted, or TikTok disappeared from the planet)…
…you don’t want to lose all of that hard work.
You won’t get 100% of your audience to leave TikTok for you, but you will get the dedicated users (who are the most valuable anyway).
Use the link in your bio to drive traffic where you want.
And then, use CTAs as on-screen text and verbal instruction to click the links in your bio and join you elsewhere.
TikTok Marketing Video Ideas To Help You Get Started
- Encourage user-generated content by asking a question and inviting users to Stitch or Duet with their answers.
- Share a tip or tutorial and encourage stitches or duets showing viewers’ results.
- Do a big reveal or unboxing (but with clever transitions and a trending sound).
- Make your product/brand/experience fit into the template of a current trending sound, effect, or format.
- Stitch your user’s videos featuring your product. React to the video, say thank you, or show support.
Once you spend a bit of time on TikTok and see some social media video styles you like, we think you’ll find that the ideas don’t stop coming.
So those are the things that will help you create an effective TikTok marketing strategy for your business!
If you need more help promoting your brand on social media platforms, then check out our social media marketing services today.
Contact us now to get started!