How to Create Successful Content and Reach the Right Audience on TikTok
If there’s one social media platform that's undoubtedly in full swing, it’s TikTok. Brands have become desperate to get their employees on TikTok, and luxury companies are putting all their marketing efforts into hiring TikTok influencers. Meanwhile, small and medium-sized businesses are left to pick through a motley assortment of low-tier influencers to stir brand awareness.
TikTok's popularity with retailers is fueled by the type of content it promotes: short, amateur-style videos that can quickly go viral if they hit the nail on the head. Yet, many brands are still racking their brains over the magic behind the types of videos that ultimately perform well on the platform — i.e., fostering the desired brand awareness and advocacy.
To solve this mystery, we've compiled a short but sweet guide on how to use TikTok for social media marketing.
Understanding TikTok for Marketing
Before posting their content, brands need to understand two things: TikTok’s user demographics and how its algorithm works.
The golden rule of TikTok is content over followers. TikTok’s algorithm evaluates each piece of content individually according to its engagement rate by identifying items that people stream several times and share with friends who live in the same area and speak the same language.
Instagram has 689 million monthly active users and nearly 100 million in the U.S. alone. Nearly half (47.5 percent) of TikTok users in the U.S. are between the ages of 10 and 29. This age group simply enjoys watching entertaining content such as lip syncs and dance videos. Still, they're also interested in creatively designed content about everyday topics such as traveling, sports, products and politics.
But what incentivizes users to engage with retailers' content? Let’s delve deeper.
The Type of Content That Performs Best on TikTok
TikTok is a great marketing tool because you can demonstrate your product, brand and service in a short video format. However, a challenge retailers face is that promotional content should make up no more than 20 percent of branded content. The other eight out of 10 times, brands must provide real value to the viewers. For example, let’s imagine you are a skincare company. By sharing a funny video about a common skincare problem, you can attract a crowd that resonates with the issue. Later, you can create a video that shows your product as a solution to this specific skin problem, and even stitch a few seconds from the first video as a reference.
With that in mind, educational content — such as recommendations, tips and business insights — works very well on TikTok and can gain your brand a lot of traction. Check out these examples for inspiration: Candle store GGscandle shares how it makes its candle designs, engaging viewers with decorative ideas and DIY candle making. The team at Pulse Physiotherapy regularly shares the best exercises for your body, attracting fitness enthusiasts and athletes alike to engage with its videos. Both brands use educational content to create brand awareness and remembrance.
Another key to creating content worth sharing is jumping on TikTok trends. Trends usually encompass hashtags, songs, and TikTok challenges. You can find trending topics via the discovery area in the TikTok app. When you've identified a trend that matches your product and content intent, focus on the trend itself instead of marketing your company. Let’s say you choose to jump on a popular song trend. Embed your product with a supporting role, such as the photographer Jordi does with Banana by Shaggy.
Reaching the Right Audience With the Help of TikTok Influencers
One surefire strategy to get the right target audience is by hiring TikTok influencers. Influencer marketing has helped even the smallest companies, like NerdyNuts or hismile, make a name for themselves and strengthen brand advocacy rapidly.
Influencers create trust in brands if they post content with brands’ products. An influencer will also understand your brand’s audience and their pain points as they grew their followers based on sharing posts addressing them. Keep in mind that your influencer must match your brand values. Let’s say you sell organic foods. People who promote a healthy, environmentally conscious lifestyle will help you reach the right audience.
To find influencers, either use the search bar with keywords, usernames and hashtags. Or, to speed up this process, you can use an influencer marketing platform that can save you time and effort in your search for influencers in your industry.
TikTok marketing takes some thought, but it’s not rocket science. Instead of promoting your products, you should look for indirect ways of including your product into your channel, provide your audience with real value, and focus on content collaborations to build brand advocacy.
Kyle Dulay is the co-founder of Collabstr, a platform allowing brands to find and hire influencers for various social media sites.
Related story: Twitch and TikTok: The Next Big Retail Media Platforms?
Kyle Dulay is the Co-Founder of Collabstr, a platform allowing brands to find and hire influencers for various social media sites.