With the growth of ecommerce and short-form video in general, TikTok has become one of the most popular social media platforms for brand marketing and building an engaged audience. However, the rules for success on TikTok are very different from those on other platforms, especially since it is one of the fastest-growing social media platforms.
You’re probably aware that TikTok provides an excellent opportunity to broaden your reach, especially to younger audiences like Gen Z. TikTok’s technology and tools may significantly improve brand recall and social media engagement. You can produce videos that aren’t perfect and end up going viral.
A TikTok campaign run by a brand refers to the strategies and content created by an organization for the video app, and can be either organic or paid. With a growing user base and consistent trends brands can capitalize on, this app is already a hot topic for marketing in a variety of industries. Because TikTok shows users a “For You” page of suggested trending videos rather than just videos by others they’re following, there is a greater opportunity to get your brand’s foot in the door with new audiences.
As a marketer, growing your TikTok following might be the key to boosting your return on sales, especially if you don’t have the money to market your business through paid advertising on social media. Read on to learn how you can design a simple yet effective TikTok campaign strategy.
1. Feature User-Generated Content (UGC)
UGC, content created by members of your brand community and often shared on social media, is frequently found on TikTok through unboxing videos, tutorials, shopping hauls, or challenges. You can encourage your fans to share their videos related to your products through a brand-specific challenge or unique branded hashtag. Ask your fans to share their experiences with your brand — Pixlee has found that 85% of consumers allow brands to reuse this content when asked.
Sharing UGC is a powerful TikTok and marketing strategy in general because it’s 35% more memorable than any other type of media, and 50% more trusted. Plus, you’re showing your audience you care about their experience with your brand and their engagement.
Top brands on TikTok are already taking advantage of UGC by resharing customer posts and promoting submissions for trends and contests. Cotopaxi posts users’ unboxing videos, Jones Soda reuses a customer’s video featuring the brand’s iconic soda can, and Morphe reshares makeup tutorials by fans.
In order to harness UGC from your fans on TikTok, you’ll need a collection method. While some smaller brands can do this manually, it can often be worth it to invest in a CRM platform that automates this process. Pixlee allows brands to collect users’ TikTok content (in addition to content from other social channels) and publish it across various marketing channels to boost social proof and community-building efforts.
2. Try a Live Stream
TikTok Live provides an additional way for engagement through a live video users can tune into. Going live on the platform is unique for creators and marketers since it adds a human touch to virtual communication that words and images often lack. It has become a new trend for digital marketing to grab audience attention, share brand stories, and lower advertising expenses.
However, as a marketer, the unique feature of TikTok Live is that users may find more live streams by clicking on the live icon. That allows them to watch even from people they don’t follow. This means TikTok Live is ripe for brand discovery and getting more eyeballs on your content.
TikTok Live has two requirements: a minimum of 1,000 followers and a minimum age of 16 or older. Here are a few tips to set up a live stream TikTok users will want to engage with:
- Personalize your live video with a photo, discussion topic, and title
- Open the floor to feedback from your viewers in the comments section
- Add co-hosts to diversify your content
- Engage with comments and questions throughout your stream
- Perform a speed test to ensure your internet connection is stable for high-quality streaming
- Prepare a few bullet points on your topic of choice so your audience can follow along
If you’re interested in running multiple live streams over the course of a campaign, you can choose topics beforehand and tease them to your audience so they come back for more. The options are endless. Just try your best to make things more transparent and be personal with your audience, regardless of whether your goal is to sell a product, drive traffic to other channels, or promote a free opt-in..
3. Run a Hashtag Challenge
Branded hashtags for social media contests aren’t new — many leading brands already use their own tags on Instagram to encourage users to interact with their brand online. TikTok is known for its trendy hashtag challenges that users jump on quickly, offering your brand a place to collect more UGC and facilitate engagement.
Including your branded hashtags in videos with popular sounds boosts the likelihood of them being found and going viral on TikTok. When creating challenges using your branded hashtags, you can encourage fans to make videos with sound effects, lip syncs, dancing movements, or filters. You might even request that they produce videos on a specific topic related to your product.
It is also crucial to give clear guidelines and direction while still allowing users to be creative and showcase their skills and passions. This approach retains a significant community element and helps your content go viral, resulting in massive engagement and user-generated content.
Jones Soda ran its #TurkeyGravyChallenge, encouraging fans to share a TikTok video of their reaction to the brand’s Thanksgiving-themed soda flavor. This is a great example of a brand-oriented challenge that
To go viral, you’ll need to promote the competition on your social media channels, website, and in-store, among other places. All of this will enhance TikTok video engagement. As your challenge gains popularity and more people use your hashtag, the algorithm will push your content to a broader audience, allowing you to take advantage of organic reach. When a challenge is still trending, it may get your company in front of thousands of new potential customers.
4. Behind-the-Scenes Footage
Instead of presenting your audience with the typical picture of your business through polished and professional posts, show them a humanized side of your business. Give them some insight into how you prepare your material or a raw look at your company culture through employee-generated content. This approach lets your brand team take the stage and give fans an insider look into your brand’s values and how you operate day to day.
Alo Yoga lets its social media manager shine by showing her favorite picks from the apparel brand’s latest products.
You may share a variety of behind the scenes with your audience, such as lunch meetings, relocations, project updates, and how your employees use your products in their own lives. That will improve your TikTok presence and personalize your business.
This strategy will also help you attract loyal followers since it allows your audience to discover more about your brand and shows the real people behind the operation. It fosters deeper trusting relationships.
5. Tap Into Influencer Content
Influencer Marketing continues to pave the way for brands hoping to expand their online audiences, boost conversion rates, and increase brand awareness on social media. Whether you’re promoting a new product, hoping to gain traction on a hashtag challenge, or simply looking to grow your audience, turning to influencers is often a good idea because they’re so familiar with the TikTok platform and keys to success on the app.
While TikTok is ripe with big-name influencers like Bella Poarch and Charli D’Amelio, collaborating with smaller-scale micro-influencers whose interests are more aligned with your brand’s products may prove to be a more cost-effective and targeted approach for your TikTok campaign. Take the time to find individuals whose followings match your target audience to identify the right influencer-brand fit.
Pixlee for Creators allows brands and influencers to discover mutually-beneficial relationships and manage campaigns within one platform. Additionally, Pixlee’s TikTok functionality allows brands to collect influencer content at a larger scale and publish their content on the most meaningful marketing channels. Puma ran a “TikTok Fashion Show” highlighting 5 TikTok creators and showcasing their brand-related videos on a landing page.
All of these tips are critical to boosting the reach of your content on TikTok and increasing your chances of going viral. TikTok allows you to share links with your other social media accounts. If you’re looking to boost your brand image on social media, this is an excellent place to begin.
Last but not least, despite some criticism surrounding the platform’s data privacy, TikTok continues to increase in popularity. Keep this in mind while developing a TikTok marketing strategy. Good luck!
Sam Molony is part of the marketing team at Mailshake. Sam’s goal is to inspire people to not just “hang in there” but to thrive. When Sam’s not publishing or promoting new content, you can find him playing sports and cooking up a storm in the kitchen.