There are so many social media platforms to choose from for businesses right now. The biggest challenge you might face is making sure you’re spending your time and money in the right places so that you’re getting a positive return on your investment.
TikTok is one of the platforms that’s become incredibly popular very fast, but it’s also intimidating to a lot of businesses who don’t know how to use it for organic engagement or paid advertising. It’s also worth noting that while TikTok is popular, it’s not right for every business.
The following are the most important things to know before your business decides to use TikTok.
What is TikTok?
The app Musical.ly was incredibly popular up until 2018 when a Chinese company called ByteDance took it over. At that time, the users moved to TikTok automatically.
TikTok is a short-form app for video-sharing. Users create and then share videos that are only 15 seconds long on any topic. The app for the Chinese market is maintained separately, and it’s known as Dyuin.
The short-form video concept is just one part of TikTok. The app also offers effects, filters, and song and sound snippets. You can add videos created on your phone, and TikTok added a reactions feature so that users can record their reactions to videos and then share them.
TikTok users do dance videos, funny videos, challenges, and post lifestyle and hacks.
Along with influencers being active on TikTok, another reason for its soaring popularity is localized content. There are localized hashtags and often challenges and local contests.
The app uses local trending hashtags in making suggestions to users for content creation. Personalized recommendations are also sent to all users.
The app boasts simple video creation and sharing, and users can record pretty much anything from their daily life and then post it instantly. There’s not a lot of time or effort that goes into watching or creating videos simply because they’re so short.
The Benefits of TikTok for Brands
If your brand isn’t on TikTok yet, you might feel like you’re overloaded by social media platforms as it is, without adding another.
TikTok does have some features that are unique to it and beneficial for brands, though. The element of creativity is a big one. You can create content within the app, so you can make videos that educate, trigger an emotional response or spark conversations. You’re opening up your brand for exposure on a much larger scale. TikTok also boasts a unique and highly accurate algorithm, making it more likely that your posts are going to end up in front of the customers you’re targeting.
Your business gets access to an audience on TikTok that other platforms don’t have.
If you can be consistent with your efforts and regularly create engaging and valuable content, you’re likely to see the payoff. Since the content is video-focused, you’re also conveying images in the most efficient way possible.
Brands often think that TikTok is only a hub for Generation Z, so they think their audience isn’t spending time on the platform. Yes, Generation Z makes up a larger percentage of TikTok users, but people from every generation are on the platform, and use is only increasing across generations.
All major social platforms started out as being filled primarily with young audiences, and then that expanded over time. Even if you don’t think your audience is there quite yet, it’s valuable to go ahead and start consistently creating content now so you’re present when they do make their way to TikTok.
The algorithm of TikTok makes it easy to create relevant, on-brand content without having to do massive amounts of research. You can see trending videos relevant to your brand, and there’s always something new going on. You can take trends ad to apply them to the industry.
How Your Business Can Use TikTok
If you’re convinced it’s time to explore TikTok for your business, the following steps can help you get started:
- You’ll need to create a business account after you download the app. If you already have a personal account, you can switch it to a business account. Then, you choose the category that’s closest to your industry.
- Optimize your profile. You want to update the URL, profile photo, and bio. Choose an image that represents your brand and ensure that you’re keeping things visually cohesive across all of your social accounts. For your bio, you have only 80 characters, so get to the point. You are allowed to include one clickable link in your profile, so choose which one to use carefully. It might be your homepage, landing page, or app download page, for example.
- Start to figure out your audience. You can think about your existing audience, or you can see where you might be able to reach a new audience. You want to study your audience carefully so that you’re learning about their interests and behaviors and creating content accordingly.
- Get familiar with the TikTok algorithm. You’ll include relevant captions and hashtags, and you want to drive up engagement as much as you can. In doing so, you’re more likely to get people to notice you on their “For You” pages.
- If your competition is on TikTok, look at what they’re doing. What seems to be working, but also what’s not working, and are there any gaps that you could fill? Assessing your competition can give you a lot of insight and help you figure out the content that’s getting the most engagement.
- Create a content calendar just for the platform because consistency is one of the most important factors to finding success on TikTok.
- Use TikTok advertising, which will help you get your business in front of the right people.
Finally, you have to use analytics as you’re growing and optimizing on the platform. You want to use the TikTok analytics tools available to you, tracking your performance and looking for places you can improve.