TikTok: the fastest-growing media app in the world, where anything and anyone can turn into a viral sensation. But the real question is: do you need a TikTok to market your business or nonprofit?
Even if you don’t have an account, you’ve probably watched TikTok videos that are crossposted on Twitter, Instagram, or Youtube. With short-form videos perfect for our short attention spans and individually-curated content, TikTok content keeps users engaged.
Not only does the app draw individuals, but brands and businesses have taken to TikTok, too — using its major popularity to gain brand awareness. If you’ve questioned if you and your business should try your hand at TikTok, you’re in the right place. We’re here to tell you all you need to know about if and how you should use the app.
Should your business take on TikTok?
Jumping on the TikTok train can be tempting — especially with its growing popularity. But before you go ahead and create an account for your business, you might want to take a deep dive into your own brand and industry.
Do you have time?
Before jumping onto TikTok, ask yourself if you have time to devote to it. You’ll have to learn the language and etiquette of the platform, and then actually make the content, too.
Do you have time to consistently create high-quality and creative content? To engage with your followers? To analyze what you’re doing and how you can improve? This goes for any new social media platform — don’t do it if you can’t do it well!
Adding a new social media platform — especially one as fast-paced as TikTok — is no easy task. It takes time, consistency, and creativity. Think about whether your account will serve as noise and clutter or if it will truly add something new to your business.
What are you trying to accomplish?
Whether you’re seeking to increase brand awareness, gain sales, or get people engaging with your brand, think about what your objectives are. Can TikTok can help you achieve your goals? Do you need TikTok to accomplish your goals?
Or — as you asked yourself earlier — will it take up so much of your time that it actually distracts you from your goals? We’ve seen lots of organizations and businesses hop on trends like TikTok just to be “trendy” or “cool,” and from a strategic marketing standpoint, there is nothing worse.
Who is your audience?
Ask yourself whether or not your audience aligns with TikTok’s user demographics. For example, 47.4% of US users are between 10 and 29 years old — and our CEO says she is way too old for TikTok. If your audience is not teens or tech-savvy young adults, TikTok probably isn’t for you.
Additionally, most users are on the app to seek out entertainment, humor, or inspiration — not to make a purchase or support a brand. Think about whether your audience will truly hear your message on such a lighthearted and upbeat platform.
How can you use it?
Okay, so if you decided that TikTok is worth your time and effort, now what? Here are a few strategies you can utilize to make the most of the app:
Generate effective content
Not all social media platforms are created equal, so take time to familiarize yourself with what works and what doesn’t. Remember that users are on the app to be entertained — keep your content light, engaging, and real!
The Washington Post is an expert at this, using TikTok to bring a new, goofy side to their prestigious publication.
Participate in challenges
Remember how you assessed your goals to see if TikTok could help you reach them? If those goals are brand awareness, recognition, or engagement, you might want to consider taking your own creative spin on the latest TikTok trends.
Sabra, for example, takes advantage of popular trends like Pesto Eggs and Feta Pasta — and incorporates their own product into the popular dishes.
The most effective way to reach your marketing objectives through TikTok might require a little extra spending.
Simmons, for example, invested in a branded hashtag challenge feature to revitalize their brand. The 150-year-old mattress company created the #Snoozzzapalooza Challenge, encouraging users to post videos of themselves diving onto their beds and into a fantasy world. A whopping 1.1 million people participated in this campaign.
Whether through investing in promoted content, collaborating with influencers, or direct advertising through TikTok, many brands have been able to garner success and recognition through paid partnerships.
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