If you spend any time around tweens or teens, you’ve probably heard of TikTok. But as is the case with so many new social media platforms, you may not be sure what it is or whether you should be using it. No fear—we’re here to help.
What Is TikTok?
TikTok is a video sharing platform similar to YouTube in that users create, upload, and share original content. Accounts can be set to public or private, and the videos that are uploaded can be public, private, or shared with friends only. The platform’s landing page also functions like YouTube’s by suggesting content for you based on your previous viewing habits on the app.
However, videos on TikTok tend to be short. The maximum recording time within the app is 15 seconds, although users can string together short videos or upload longer content that was not recorded with the app. Similar to Instagram and SnapChat, TikTok allows users to apply filters to their video and use hashtags to categorize content. Before uploading a video, users can apply background music from a variety of genres or edit the video with speed adjustments, all from within the app.
Should I Care About TikTok?
It’s hard to write off an app that exceeded one billion installs as of February 2019 and earned $3.5 million in October 2018. With 500 million global monthly users, including popular celebrities like Jimmy Fallon and Tony Hawk, many big brands like Walmart and Target have invested in marketing campaigns on TikTok that have turned out to be highly successful.
However, whether TikTok is right for your digital marketing strategy depends on your target market. At one time, everyone was on Facebook, regardless of age, and Twitter enjoyed popularity with a similarly broad demographic. But although YouTube still enjoys widespread popularity across three generations, social media platforms are beginning to develop niches with different generations. TikTok is a great example of this as the platform targets 13-24-year-olds pretty hard.
Generation Z can be a lucrative demographic, though. As of March 2019, TikTok had made $75 million from in-app purchases, and the app is currently developing an advertising mechanism that would allow them to monetize their user base the way Facebook and Snapchat have been doing. Clearly, this can be a productive platform for promoting your business if this is the age group you’re looking to reach.
And a word of caution: we know that teens and young adults are early-adopters of new social platforms, only for adults to often co-opt those same platforms later. YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter all began that way. Given how quickly TikTok is growing, the age range of users may well expand over the next few years.
Tips For Promoting Your Business On TikTok
If you decide to promote your business using TikTok, there are a couple of things to keep in mind. First, as with most social media platforms, TikTok has its own culture, so it’s a good idea to passively explore the app to until you understand its unspoken rules. Check out how businesses like yours are interacting with users, or follow popular uses to get a better sense of what TikTok’s users are looking for. Conveniently, the landing page of the app features some of the more popular videos currently trending on the app, so give it a scroll through.
Next, authenticity is always important on social media, but this is especially true on TikTok, which has a reputation with users for honest, casual content, rejecting the airbrushed content of sites like Instagram. You should only create or share content that feels genuine for your company; content that tries too hard or feels too contrived may come off as gimmicky or pandering.
Remember that engagement is key. Challenge videos are popular on TikTok and may be a way for you to call on your followers to interact with and promote your brand, and using popular (but relevant) hashtags is an easy way to get your company’s name seen. Whatever content you develop, keep it fun and light so that users want to return and keep consuming it. Most importantly, churn out regular content. Don’t give your followers time to move on to the next brand.
Is your business looking for a new digital marketing strategy? TracSoft can help you develop a custom campaign and help you beat out the competition. With experience in search engine optimization, social media marketing, and pay per click advertising, we have what it takes to deliver a digital marketing strategy that will take your business far. Find out more by contacting us today.