In recent years, TikTok has become one of the fastest-growing social media platforms, with over a billion active users worldwide. The app allows users to create and share short-form videos, making it popular among younger generations with a short attention span. As TikTok continues to gain momentum, many brands are considering the platform as a potential marketing tool. This article provides an overview of the app, which can help decide if TikTok is suitable for your brand’s marketing strategy.
TikTok’s unique features and young demographic make it an attractive platform for brands looking to connect with a new audience and explore creative marketing strategies. However, it’s essential to understand the platform’s culture and user behavior before diving into TikTok marketing because it might not fit into the image you’re going for with your brand.
TikTok has a relatively young user base, with most users between the ages of 18 and 24. However, the app is quickly gaining popularity not only among Gen Z, with 31% of TikTok’s audience falling between the ages of 25 and 34.
Regarding gender, TikTok is almost evenly split between male and female users, with a slight majority of female users. This makes the platform an excellent opportunity for brands targeting both genders.
TikTok’s user base is also known for being highly engaged and spending a significant amount of time on the app, with an average of 52 minutes daily. This presents a valuable opportunity for brands to connect with a young, engaged audience and build brand awareness.
TikTok’s most important features
The video’s length, typically between 15 and 60 seconds, is one of the most notable features. This format is perfect for brands looking to create engaging, bite-sized content that quickly captures users’ attention. Filters and effects are also an important part of the content, as they can transform even the most mundane videos into something captivating.
In addition, TikTok provides a library of licensed music and sound effects, so users can easily add music to their videos or remix existing sounds to create something new and exciting. This feature has helped to make TikTok a hub for viral dance challenges and lip-syncing videos.
The platform allows users to collaborate with each other by creating a “duet” video. Brands can use this feature to team up with influencers or other brands to create unique and engaging content that resonates with the app’s young, creative audience.
Trends – the essence of TikTok
Trends are at the heart of TikTok’s culture. Your marketing efforts on TikTok are bound to be doomed unless you constantly follow them. The app’s users are always creating new and innovative content, and these trends can quickly become viral sensations. Brands that can identify these trends early on and create content that aligns with them can gain a significant following on the app.
TikTok trends can come from anywhere. A trend might start with a simple dance move or a unique camera angle, but it can quickly spread throughout the app’s user base and become a phenomenon.
It’s also important to note that TikTok trends move quickly. What might be popular one week could be completely forgotten the next. Brands that want to stay relevant on the app must be able to pivot quickly and create content that aligns with the latest trends.
However, users on the app can quickly identify when a brand is trying too hard to fit in, which can lead to negative reactions. Only if you can authentically align with TikTok’s culture and create content that resonates with users will you be able to build a loyal following on the app.
Key Considerations for Brands
Brand fit with TikTok’s audience and culture
TikTok’s audience values authenticity, creativity, and humor. The platform’s culture is centered around trends, challenges, and viral content that are often light-hearted and fun. Brands with a playful or humorous image may succeed on TikTok, but those with a more serious or conservative image may struggle to connect with the app’s audience.
Understand your target audience
TikTok’s user base primarily consists of Gen Z and younger Millennials, so if your target audience falls within this age range, it’s worth considering TikTok as part of your marketing strategy. However, it’s essential to go beyond just age demographics and dive deeper into your target audience’s interests, values, and behaviors and determine whether they align with TikTok’s culture.
Content creation challenges
TikTok’s users are constantly bombarded with new content, so brands need to be able to create content that stands out and resonates with their audience. This can require a significant investment of time, resources, and creativity. Consider if you have the resources to not only create engaging content regularly but also follow and adapt to the trends on the platform.
Analyze your competition
Analyzing your competition’s presence on TikTok can help you better understand the platform and assess its potential for your brand. Take a look at what your competitors are doing on the platform, how often they post, what type of content they create, and how successful their content is in terms of engagement and views. This way, you’ll understand if TikTok is potentially beneficial for your niche.
Measurement and analytics limitations
The platform’s measurement and analytics capabilities are still evolving. While TikTok does offer some basic metrics, such as views, likes, and shares, there are limitations to the level of data available for analysis. TikTok’s algorithm can be difficult to understand, making tracking the success of specific campaigns or content strategies challenging. You should carefully assess your goals and determine if the available measurement and analytics capabilities align with your needs.
TikTok is a social media platform that can be a valuable marketing tool. However, it’s important to understand the platform’s culture, user characteristics, and unique features before diving in. Brands that align with TikTok’s culture authentically and create engaging, on-trend content may find success on the app.
It’s also important to consider your target audience, content creation challenges, competition, and measurement and analytics limitations before making a decision. By carefully assessing these factors, brands can determine if TikTok suits their marketing strategy and reach a new, engaged audience.
Martyna Inkielman, PhotoAiD