TikTok Marketing: What Is TikTok and How Can You Market on It?

TikTok Marketing: What Is TikTok and How Can You Market on It?

Many people may not know what TikTok is, yet, but you may want to incorporate it into your social media marketing strategy. 

Even though you haven’t used TikTok before, you have most likely heard about it. Videos with the TikTok logo are all over other social media platforms.  

Currently, TikTok has roughly 800 million active users and in January 2020, it was reported to be the most downloaded app. It is now bigger than Pinterest and Twitter. 

It is very possible that TikTok is here to stay. It sounds like a goldmine for marketers, doesn’t it? You need to be very careful, however. People go on TikTok for entertainment and you have to be wise while taking your business there. 

This guide will teach you everything you need to know.

What Is TikTok?

It is a social media app for smartphones and is mostly about video content. TikTok users (otherwise known as TikTokers), take short videos, then post them on the platform after editing. They use hashtags to identify with popular categories. 

Much of the content posted is generally comedic. Popular genres include cooking how-to’s, cringe videos, lip-syncing and short skits. 

Challenges are an extremely popular phenomena on the platform. 

TikTok’s Specific User Demographic

41% of the total number of TikTokers are aged 16 to 24 years. This is the only information that the social network has released. But you can safely assume that 24- to 30-year-olds also make up a big percentage of the users. 

Here are other known statistics:

  • iPhone/Android usage: 52%/47% split
  • TikTok is available in 75 languages in 150 markets
  • 44% of TikTokers are female while 56% are male.

With these statistics in mind, TikTok would be great for your marketing strategy if your audience is young. 

Marketing on TikTok

You can either create original content or collaborate with influencers.

Working with an Influencer

TikTok has huge influencers, some of them with millions of subscribers. The influencers have already created a relationship with their audience and they can easily convince them to try your products. You basically pay them to promote the products or use them on camera. 

Anytime you are looking for influencers, remember that relevance is better than reach. 

Incorporate Original Content

Creating your own content requires resources, creativity and a lot of time. And you need viral content too. 

To make your content popular, you have to hop on trends. See what hashtags are trending. Use them to create your version. Remember to wisely incorporate something about your business. 

Another easier way would be offering tricks, tips, how-to’s or inside secrets relevant to your industry. 

Using TikTok Ads

If organic engagement seems too complicated, you can always use the TikTok advertising platform. 

Ad Formats on TikTok

According to TikTok, formats include but are not limited to square, vertical or horizontal images and videos. 

They have ad creation tool sets—Video Creation Kit and Automated Creative Optimization— to help you crate ads. 

The ads can appear in story, post-roll, detail page or in-feed. You also have the option to target a specific audience. 

TikTok have managed to keep their algorithm, especially for the For You page, a secret. 

Platforms like Instagram have been very transparent about their feed rankings. The same cannot be said of TikTok. 

They have not bothered to verify any details about how their algorithm works. 

However, the platform has been around for a while now. From observing personal first-hand experiences, you can get some valuable information about how the algorithm chooses what to show on the For You page of a specific user. 

Here are 5 key insights about the algorithm.

Each Video’s Performance Determines Its Exposure

If you have been using TikTok, you’ll notice that people with barely any followers get millions of views. The TikTok algorithm seems to focus more on an individual video’s interactions and less on the profile as a whole. 

When you publish a video, it will be shown to few users on their For You page, between popular videos. Just scroll your For You page and you’ll notice a video with hardly any likes.

So, if this video is well-received, TikTok will show it to more users. 

The TikTok Algorithm Considers Multiple Indicators

Some of the indicators that are considered include likes, comments, shares, video completions and rewatches. For this reason, genuinely informative or entertaining videos have a high chance of doing well. 

Geo-Location Determines Initial Exposure

TikTok videos are first shown to people in that geo-location. This is an observation. The location greatly influences the recommended videos on your For You page.

Small businesses can benefit from increased local brand awareness. And if your video is well received in your geo-location, it may be shown internationally. 

Tending Sounds and Hashtags Help

If you want to increase your content’s discoverability, you need to put more thought into Sounds and hashtags. 

Videos with trending hashtags in their caption have a high chance of being shown in Discovery pages. They may even be included in more For You pages. 

At the moment, it is not clear which hashtags will have the biggest impact. But it is assumed that #foryoupage, #foryou and #fyp increase the likelihood of videos making it to more For You pages. 

Other than using high traffic hashtags, you may want to include relevant hashtags as well, depending on your niche. The TikTok algorithm will understand your content better and show it to people who are interested.

In the same way, trending Sounds could boost your video’s visibility. 

Users on TikTok choose a sound to see all the related videos. And, obviously, trending Sounds will be prioritized. 

Even Older Videos Can Go Viral All of a Sudden

Videos on TikTok don’t have a short shelf life, as is the case on networks like Instagram. All your videos are being monitored constantly—and this includes the older ones. 

If your video starts getting more engagement, it may go viral. It doesn’t matter when you posted it. This usually happens when the hashtags or Sounds you used start spiking in popularity. 

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