Jun 16, 2020

How can I advertise on TikTok?

by Digital Marketing Institute

Since its launch in 2017, TikTok has taken the social media world by storm. It’s now one of the fastest growing mobile apps in the world, with over 800 million monthly active users. As a digital marketer, you can’t afford to ignore TikTok. Read on to discover how you can use the platform to market your product or service, and to reach new and diverse audiences around the world.

What is TikTok?

TikTok is a social media app that allows users to post short-form music, talent, or comedy videos up to 15 seconds in length (although users can put four separate videos together to create 60-second pieces). Videos can incorporate filters and editing effects, or show the user lip-synching to a song. Users can also browse millions of user-generated short videos – many of which are bizarre and whacky - on the platform. The majority of TikTok users are Generation Z or millennials, who are based in major cities around the world and are attracted by the authenticity and creativity offered by the platform.

How can I advertise on TikTok?

Why should I advertise on TikTok?

TikTok brought ads to its platform in 2019. Since then, big names like Nike, Universal Pictures, and Guess have used TikTok ads to create unique, eye-catching campaigns – and to drive huge numbers of impressions. Advertisers on TikTok also have access to its global family of apps, including Helo, TopBuzz, and BuzzVideo, which can help them find new users who may be interested in their offerings. However, TikTok is not automatically the right advertising vehicle for every brand. To check if it’s right for you, ask yourself these questions:

  • Who is your target audience? If your target audience mainly consists of young people, then TikTok could be a very good choice: after all, about 66% of TikTok users are under 30, with 41% in the 16 to 24 age bracket; and many of the trending videos on the platform relate to topics like school and homework. If your target audience is significantly older, then you may not benefit as much from the platform. However, do bear in mind that young people are traditionally the ‘early adopters’ of most new technologies, and older demographics are increasingly discovering and using the app.
  • Can you afford it? You need to decide if TikTok is an affordable choice, especially if you are a small business. Advertising on the platform is still relatively new, so it can be expensive: about $10 per CPM, with large campaigns costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. In addition, you need to invest a minimum of $500 in a TikTok campaign. So if you have a small budget or are trying to keep costs down, TikTok may not be right for you. 
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How can I set up a TikTok Ads account?

If you decide to go ahead and advertise on TikTok, the first thing you need to do is create a TikTok Ads account. To do this:

  • Visit the TikTok Ads homepage: https://ads.tiktok.com/homepage/
  • Click the Create an Ad button
  • Fill in the form that appears with your details and click Submit
  • A representative from TikTok will contact you, and your account will be set up within 48 hours

When your account is set up, you will have access to the platform’s dashboard and can start creating ad campaigns.

How can I advertise on TikTok?

How can I create a TikTok ad campaign?

It’s pretty easy to create a TikTok ad campaign. Just go to your account dashboard and follow these key steps:

  • Click the Campaign tab and then click Create
  • Choose a campaign objective
  • Set your daily or lifetime budget
  • Create an ad group for your campaign
  • Choose your ad placements and audience targeting
  • Configure the budget and schedule for your ad group
  • Set the pacing for your budget
  • Select an optimization goal

What kind of ads can I upload to TikTok?

Once you’ve created your campaign, you’re ready to upload ads to TikTok. You need to think creatively here, as it’s important to keep viewers engaged on the platform at all times. On TikTok Ads, you can choose from a variety of formats, including horizontal, vertical, orsquare videos and images.

It’s a good idea to make use of TikTok’s Video Creation Kit when designing your ads. This tool makes it easy for you to create video ads. It provides you with a variety of video and image templates, which you can customize using your existing assets, as well as free background music options.

On TikTok, you can experiment with a variety of different ad types, including:

  • Brand Takeovers: You can immediately hook user attention with brand takeovers, as they appear instantly when a user opens TikTok. This ad type can deliver a strong visual impact for your brand.
  • In-feed Ads: These native ads are integrated into users’ ‘For You’ feeds. Users can like, comment, share, and follow the videos.
  • Hashtag Challenges: These encourage users to share content on TikTok on your brand’s behalf for several days. They tap into TikTok users’ passion for creation and self-expression, and can create a high level of engagement for your brand.
How can I advertise on TikTok?

How can I optimize my TikTok ads?

Use these tips to ensure your TikTok ads are as effective as possible:

  • Use high-resolution images: Your ad’s visuals will take over the user’s entire screen in brand takeovers and in-feed ads, so you want them to be sharp, clear, and of the highest quality.
  • Include a single call-to-action (CTA): You don’t want to confuse your viewers. Make it very clear what you want them to do next.
  • Write concise ad descriptions: With TikTok, you have very limited space for using words. In fact, you only have about 80 characters to play with when writing ad descriptions. So choose every word carefully.
  • Ensure key elements are prominently placed: Place your key creative elements in the middle of the screen, so that they don’t conflict with the ad description appearing at the bottom of the screen.
  • Experiment: Experiment with different creative elements and ad formats, until you find the one that works most successfully for you.

How is influencer marketing used on TikTok?

You could also consider using influencer marketing on TikTok, which is really gaining in popularity. In particular, a growing number of micro-influencers are now active on the platform, enticing younger audiences away from more established social platforms like Facebook and Twitter. A micro-influencer is someone who has a social media follower-base of about 1,000 to 100,000 followers. Increasingly, brands are collaborating with micro-influencers on TikTok in order to market themselves to more focused, niche audiences. They can use the popularity of the influencer to increase brand awareness or sales, and to boost their authenticity.

To find a suitable micro-influencer to partner with, you’ll need to do some research. Look through the videos on the platform and see if there are any creators posting high-quality, engaging content that relates in some way to your brand. If you’d like to work with one of them, simply reach out and discuss your requirements. 

TikTok is one of the most downloaded apps in the world and is growing organically at a phenomenal rate. It’s impossible to know how long its success will continue or whether its millions of users will remain loyal to the app in the long term. What’s clear is that this is a platform that’s well worth investigating. It can offer advertisers access to the trend-setters of today, as well as the consumers of tomorrow. So don’t waste time or get left behind. Take a look at what TikTok is offering today. The clock really is ticking….

How can I advertise on TikTok?
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