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Adding TikTok to Your Social Media Marketing Strategy

If you’re in the business of selling products or services, it’s time to focus on your TikTok ecommerce strategy. TikTok has evolved beyond being a platform solely for trendy dances and keeping up with Gen Z; it’s now a thriving hub for discovering products and making purchases.

This addictive video-sharing platform has created a unique space in the world of social selling. As an increasing number of users visit the app with the intent to make purchases, TikTok is solidifying its position as a shopping powerhouse. The platform’s commitment to this role is so strong that there are reports of plans to establish U.S. fulfillment centers.

While it might be too early to declare TikTok the new social media Amazon, one thing is clear – if you have something to sell, TikTok is a place you definitely need to be.

TikTok Ecommerce and Its Significance

TikTok ecommerce is all about leveraging the power of the popular video-sharing app for buying and selling products and services. This rapidly growing trend offers several commerce tools to sellers, making it incredibly easy for users to browse and purchase items within seconds. What’s noteworthy is that some companies and content creators, depending on their location, can establish their TikTok storefronts within the app. These virtual storefronts enable users to seamlessly explore and make purchases directly through TikTok. Moreover, integrating with platforms like Shopify, Square, and other ecommerce tools allows sellers to swiftly create web stores, irrespective of their location.

Notably, regardless of location, all sellers can, and indeed should, embed product links in their videos and bios, enabling users to make quick in-app purchases. This means that users can instantly buy items they’ve just come across in their TikTok feed.

Why TikTok is Essential for Ecommerce

TikTok is a bustling marketplace in itself, akin to a free storefront in a bustling shopping mall. Research demonstrates the significant impact of TikTok on ecommerce, with 35% of TikTok users making purchases through the platform. An additional 44% of users have discovered products through ads and content posted by brands. When you consider TikTok’s massive user base, exceeding a billion monthly active users, the potential for unexplored sales opportunities on the platform becomes evident. In essence, TikTok and online shopping form a synergistic pairing in the realm of social commerce.

Three Reasons to Embrace TikTok for Your Ecommerce Business

  1. Increased Sales – TikTok’s appeal lies in its authenticity and unfiltered content, which sets it apart from platforms like Facebook and Instagram, known for highly polished content. This authenticity resonates with users, generating trust in the messages conveyed. As a result, this trust translates into more sales, making TikTok a prime destination for businesses aiming to boost their online sales.
  2. Enhanced SEO Strategy – Recent developments indicate that Google is now incorporating TikTok videos into its search results, highlighting the platform’s growing significance in users’ lives. By optimizing your organic TikTok content and paid ads, you stand a chance of having your videos appear in Google search results when users search for keywords related to your product or brand. This integration strengthens your brand’s online visibility.
  3. Reaching a Diverse Audience – TikTok is not solely the domain of Gen Z; it has attracted users from various age groups. A significant 63% of Gen Z utilizes TikTok daily, but the platform also appeals to Millennials and Gen Xers, with over 30% of users falling within the 25 to 44 age range. By promoting products on TikTok, you have the opportunity to engage a younger audience while extending your reach to users who may not frequent your primary social media platforms.

Creating a TikTok Business Account

Before diving into TikTok marketing, you need to understand the differences between a TikTok business account and a creator account. Business accounts come with many advantages, including access to valuable tools like ads and analytics, the ability to create an ecommerce storefront, and the option to add a website link to your profile. While business accounts may have limited access to sound clips, the benefits they offer far outweigh this limitation. To set up your TikTok business account, you can follow the steps below.

  1. Download the TikTok app and create a new account
  2. Go to your TikTok profile, located in the top right corner
  3. Access “Settings and Privacy
  4. Tap “Manage Account.”
  5. Select “Switch to Business Account.”
  6. Choose the category that best aligns with your business type

With these steps, you’ll have a business profile ready to be optimized to cater to your target audience’s needs.

10 Tips for Building Your TikTok Marketing Strategy

To kickstart your TikTok marketing journey and work towards building a significant following, we’ve crafted 10 valuable tips.

  1. Create and Brand Your TikTok Account – Building a solid TikTok marketing strategy starts with setting up your TikTok account effectively. Begin by adding a high-quality profile photo or video representing your business. This image or video serves as the face of your brand on TikTok, making it crucial to ensure it’s visually appealing and aligns with your brand identity. When you tap “Edit Profile,” take the time to fill out important details, including your business name, username, pronouns (if applicable), a concise and engaging bio, your company’s contact email, and even tag any nonprofits you collaborate with. Additionally, connecting your Instagram and YouTube accounts creates cross-platform consistency. As your following grows, you’ll unlock more features, such as the ability to add your website URL once you reach 1,000 followers. This helps your audience access your website directly from your TikTok profile.
  2. Define Your TikTok Audience – Understanding your target audience is fundamental to a successful TikTok marketing strategy. TikTok is known for its diverse user base, with a particular emphasis on younger demographics. However, it’s crucial to go beyond these broad statistics and conduct in-depth social media market research to create a customer persona tailored to your business’s specific goals. This persona should encapsulate the demographics, interests, and preferences of your ideal TikTok audience. By doing so, you can tailor your content to resonate with this demographic, thus maximizing your TikTok marketing impact.
  3. Create Quality TikTok Videos – The heart of TikTok marketing is creating engaging and compelling video content. Before you start crafting your TikTok videos, it’s beneficial to immerse yourself in the TikTok environment. Spend time on the platform, explore trending content, and get familiar with popular video styles and effects. While these trends can provide inspiration, it’s also essential to maintain authenticity. Diversify your content by experimenting with different video types: showcase your product in action, let your team demonstrate the creation process, or inject humor by using trending sound bytes. Consistency is key here. TikTok recommends posting at least 1-4 times per day, which enhances your visibility and engagement.
  4. Use Ads in Your TikTok Marketing Strategy – To reach a broader audience, consider allocating a portion of your social media advertising budget to TikTok ads. Similar to platforms like Facebook and Instagram, TikTok ads operate on a bidding system. You can specify your target audience, create engaging video ads, and set daily or lifetime budget limits. This approach allows you to effectively promote your brand, products, or services to a larger and more targeted TikTok user base.
  5. Tap into TikTok Influencer Marketing – Collaborating with influencers is a potent strategy in TikTok marketing. The platform boasts an abundance of influencers and content creators across various niches. These influencers can partner with your brand to create engaging, user-generated content that not only spreads the word about your brand but also provides you with content to share on your own social media channels. Influencer marketing can take different forms, such as sending your product to influencers for potential unboxing or merch videos, collaborating on exclusive video content that spotlights your brand, or partnering with influencers to create a unique product line that they can promote to their dedicated audience.
  6. Monitor TikTok Analytics to Track Performance – Once you’ve switched to a business account, you gain access to valuable TikTok analytics. These analytics provide critical insights into your video performance, audience engagement, and growth. Key metrics to track include video views, growth rate, trending videos, and average watch time. These data points allow you to refine your TikTok marketing strategy, focusing on what works best and fine-tuning your content based on your audience’s preferences.
  7. Jump on Popular TikTok Trends – One of the keys to going viral on TikTok is to tap into popular trends. Keep a keen eye on trending audio clips, challenges, and video types. If you can seamlessly incorporate a trending element into your content while staying relevant to your business, it can significantly boost your visibility and engagement. TikTok’s “Discover” page is a treasure trove of trending content. Additionally, simply spending time consuming TikTok content allows you to organically discover popular trends and see how other users creatively integrate them into their videos.
  8. Take Advantage of TikTok’s Editing Capabilities – TikTok’s in-app video editing features are a goldmine for creating engaging content. The platform offers an array of tools, including filters, text overlays, stickers, captions, special effects, voiceovers, audio editing, slow-motion, and transitions. These features provide you with the flexibility to craft captivating videos directly within the TikTok app, without the need for external video editing tools. Importantly, TikTok’s algorithm seems to favor videos edited within the app, making it a wise choice for content creators and marketers.
  9. Keep Your Videos Short and Sweet – TikTok data suggests that the optimal length for videos is currently between 21-34 seconds. While TikTok has experimented with longer video formats, excessively long videos tend to overwhelm viewers. To keep your audience engaged, it’s advisable to stick to an average video length of around 30 seconds. Shorter videos are more likely to capture and hold viewers’ attention, leading to higher levels of engagement.
  10. Incorporate Live Video into Your Strategy – TikTok, like many other platforms, offers a live-streaming feature. This feature can be a valuable addition to your TikTok marketing strategy as live videos appear on viewers’ “For You” pages, enhancing visibility. Furthermore, TikTok allows viewers to send stickers and other accolades through live videos, which can become an additional source of revenue if your videos attract a large and engaged audience. Integrating live video into your TikTok marketing strategy provides an interactive and monetization opportunity that can foster deeper connections with your audience.

Benefits of Marketing on TikTok

There are three major benefits of incorporating TikTok into your marketing strategy.

  1. People Use TikTok to Find Products – A significant portion of TikTok users, approximately 49%, has reported making purchases after discovering products on the platform. This makes TikTok a highly lucrative channel for increasing sales through social media marketing.
  2. Higher Chances of Going Viral – TikTok’s algorithm prioritizes content discovery, offering brands a unique opportunity to reach a broader audience compared to other platforms. This can help you get discovered by users interested in your content, generate more followers, and increase your chances of making sales.
  3. Abundant Influencer Marketing Opportunities – Influencer marketing is a thriving trend on TikTok, making it even easier for your brand to get discovered by new potential customers in your target audience. The platform hosts numerous creators from various industries, including micro-influencers, who can provide substantial reach while being cost-effective. Building influencer relationships can further strengthen your brand’s presence on TikTok.

Effective Strategies to Drive Higher TikTok Conversion Rates

A robust TikTok ecommerce strategy centers around two primary objectives: increasing video or ad views and subsequently motivating viewers to take action, such as clicking a link, following you on Instagram, or making a purchase. Achieving high conversion rates is not as daunting as it may seem. It involves crafting attention-grabbing and engaging videos, utilizing hashtags and keywords for discoverability, leveraging TikTok ads, and aligning with the app’s trends. Below are actionable ways to enhance your TikTok conversion rates.

Embrace Hashtags and Keywords

TikTok’s reputation as a “new search engine” for Gen Z underlines the importance of hashtags and keywords. These elements convey the content’s essence to the algorithm and aid users in finding your content, even if they don’t follow you. Staying attuned to trending hashtags on TikTok and incorporating them into your captions is essential. Additionally, include relevant keywords in captions and within your videos to align with user search intent.

Utilize TikTok Ads for Targeted Reach

TikTok ads are a potent tool, with the potential to reach a substantial portion of internet users, particularly those aged 18 and above. To maximize conversion rates, tailor your TikTok ads to appeal to users likely interested in your product or service. By selecting specific criteria such as gender, age, and interests when creating ads, you can pinpoint your target audience effectively. This approach ensures that your content resonates with those most likely to convert.

Initiate Ads with an Engaging Hook

Given TikTok’s endlessly scrollable feed, your TikTok ads must begin with a captivating, attention-grabbing introduction. Users typically decide within seconds whether to continue watching or scroll past. Therefore, make those initial moments count by incorporating catchy sounds, eye-catching visuals, or compelling actions that halt users in their scrolling tracks.

Blend In and Follow Trends

TikTok’s distinct approach to content means that your videos should blend in, to some extent, with user-generated content. Whether you’re creating ads or regular feed content, authenticity is key. Collaborate with creators, opt for natural settings, and adhere to trending sounds and styles. By blending in seamlessly with the platform’s trends, you avoid appearing overly promotional, increasing your appeal to the TikTok audience.

Add Calls to Action (CTAs)

Incorporate Calls to Action (CTAs) into your TikTok ads, which are clickable buttons that appear at the video’s bottom. These CTAs guide users to transition from viewers to potential buyers without disrupting their scrolling experience. Choose from a range of predefined CTAs, such as “Learn More” or “Sign Up,” to direct users to specific landing pages on your website or store.

Include Product Links in Videos and Bios

Some TikTok ecommerce brands and creators have the capability to embed links directly into videos, simplifying the purchase process for users. If this feature is available to you, ensure that you consistently link to the products featured in your videos. For those without this feature, adding a link to your store in your bio and explicitly informing users that they can purchase products through the provided link in the video caption ensures a seamless shopping experience. Additionally, hosting TikTok LIVE shopping events while demonstrating product links can further enhance conversion rates.

Conclusion

TikTok has emerged as a dynamic platform for ecommerce, transforming from a hub of viral dances into a thriving marketplace. Its significance in the world of social selling is undeniable, with a growing number of users actively seeking products and making purchases. TikTok offers a unique opportunity for businesses to tap into its vast user base and enhance their online sales.

If you’ve already made your mark on Instagram and Facebook and are seeking a novel approach to content creation, this guide will assist you in embarking on your TikTok journey. Who knows? Your business might just produce the next viral sensation.