Considering it has the highest engagement rate and a 325% rise in popularity amongst marketers, it appears TikTok is indeed the big thing, not the next big thing.
The rise of TikTok marketing has taken many by surprise, but to those who monitor the zeitgeist at any time, this isn't surprising at all—the newest trends always start amongst the young and look small to adults because their peers haven't yet bought in. New parents today are on TikTok, and their kids will be too.
Search in general is also evolving. Social platforms are also search tools. Ever found a local service provider on Instagram because you liked pics of their work?
TikTok as search tool: As search increases engagement through visuals and interactive elements like call-out lines in PPC ads, TikTok will become more of a search tool than it is now. After more generations age into TikTok, it will be essential to compete for attention as any sort of retailer. Start mastering being found by searchers now.
TikTok is a new social media platform based on short videos. TikTok growth stats are clear—people want the meat of the best content for each day. Popular types of video content include dancing, singing, skits, informative, satisfaction (where pleasing images, like the raking of sand to perfect smoothness), and others.
While its origin story comes out of musicians promoting their new tracks, TikTok evolved into a cool video platform. In its most current form, it's seen as a rising king of advertising tools. Businesses are just beginning to get their bearings, but early signs are encouraging that this platform will eclipse others, particularly for those born after the year 2000.
TikTok put the proper focus on short clips and made it all easy to use. The creator was inspired by a bunch of kids sharing their phones one day. If he could translate this sharing experience to an app, it could become a popular pastime—this was his thinking that has been proven correct.
Why didn't Snapchat, with its earlier market entry and popularity, simply fill the need for this space? Although it too relies on short videos, it's a private messaging app. Not nearly as engaging or connected to a wider community, like TikTok.
TikTok revolves around the For You page. Every video you watch feeds it, and it adjusts in real-time to your changing preferences. This minimizes seeing content you don't like and maximizes your number of repeat visits to the app per day, while also increasing time spent in-app.
User interactions: any action you take with another account is considered an interaction. This includes liking and hiding creators, making comments, adding videos to favorites, and flagging videos as "not interested". If you watch a video until the end, versus swiping away midway through, that's considered more valuable. Scroll past a creator often? That's telling the algorithm to value this creator less.
Video information: You still have to promote your videos and make them easily interpretable by the algorithm. This means adding captions and hashtags to tell the algorithm what the content is about.
Device & account settings: Device type, country setting, and language preference have an impact, though not primary one, on what content you see on TikTok.
Connecting to younger audiences is always the most difficult job for any marketer. The 18-24 segment is hard to reach, and for obvious reasons: split attention, on top of short attention spans to start, busy lives, always searching for the new thing. This segment contains the tastemakers of the future and they're planting the seeds of the future mainstream right now.
So how do you use TikTok for marketing? Marketers focus on creating videos according to proven principles:
Great Captions: Captions can make or break a video. Add something to the video content but always focus on clarity: a hazy message could impact how your video is received and shared.
Trending Audio: It's no surprise audio trends occurred on TikTok since it started as a musician promotion app. Many videos are set to popular music of a current trend. It's a way to be accessible, show you're part of the community, and deliver the expected first. Remember, users are looking for the familiar first and the different second. Content isn’t as unique as you think. It needs to be accessible to get watched.
Popular Hashtags: These change over time; tap into them and tag your videos.
Incredible Content: As obvious as this is, there is a lot of subpar and copied content on TikTok. Keep your ideas original, and if you ride a trend, put your twist on it. It can be difficult to create great content, but there is a secret: you don't try to make it, it's upvoted by the crowd. All you need to do is stay consistent and try to produce content every day. This may sound like a lot but by creating a habit and a routine around content creation, you'll always have new stuff coming out. Some of that content will inevitably catch on. Don't give up on a musician just because it's taking a minute to gain traction on TikTok.
In one word: participate.
TikTok growth stats indicate that the user base is growing rapidly over time, cresting one billion daily active users. Becoming involved in the community is what it takes to make it on any social media platform. You need to create content, discuss others' content, stir up controversy, monitor trends, tap into daily relevant news events—stay agile and make TikTok a part of your everyday life. Those who post multiple times a day get better results because they deliver addictive content with regularity.
Hop into trends or start one: Really this just means to create content, because trends pick you, you don't start trends. But if you're just a lurker, you'll never have the chance to go viral. If you find you can't create content that resonates, just ride trends. This will result in short-term spikes in shares, likes and follows, and with repeated efforts, you can grow a sizable audience in this way.
Collaborate with influencers: This is an easy way to get instant traffic and engagement through paid promotions. Reach niche audiences and large ones alike, if your offer is liked by an influencer. Remember they have reputations upheld by delivering solid recommendations. If they could be bought, their quality control would decline and they'd be replaced.
Advertise: Create immediate momentum with advertisements. TikTok offers a lot of ways to interact with audiences including in-feed, image and video ads.
Watch stats closely and strategize accordingly: You can't manage what you don't measure. Social media platforms offer easy content creation and advertising tools, backed by interaction data, to help guide you towards optimal use of the connection tool they've created.
The rise of marketing on TikTok is here to stay. The best thing to do is learn to use it now, so that you'll be a pro by the time it's completely dominating. Facebook has an old audience that will age out. Twitter is for readers. Snapchat functionality can be integrated into TikTok for enhanced private messaging. YouTube Shorts has been gaining momentum and looks to be a competitor with TikTok, particularly with its enormous built-in audience. Keep watching the social media landscape all the time as it evolves.
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