Competition is fierce in the business world no matter what your industry and competition can be daunting—especially for small business owners. However, agile entrepreneurs have access to a tool that may give them an advantage over the big players. It’s relatively new to the business world and it’s HOT.
What is TikTok?
Young people most definitely remember Kesha’s 2009 hit single “Tik Tok,” but are you young enough to know about the other TikTok? It’s a short film-based app for 15-second videos. Teens are the primary users, but it can be beneficial for small business owners as well. So, how can TikTok help your small business? Here are just a few ways.
We live in a world where everyone is online and as far as social media avenues are concerned, TikTok is a substantial player. TikTok is estimated to have over 500 million users globally. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter might reign supreme at the moment, but the usability and momentum of TikTok is quickly taking over the social media world.
Utilizing TikTok as a means of social media marketing is really quite genius. Each video feed is between 9 and 15 seconds long (see the pro tip above). The videos are kept short and therefore making a post on TikTok will not take up a lot of time. That can be a key ingredient in advertising your small business as it can often be a challenge to create high-quality and robust content regularly while still running a company. Especially with the limited resources of a small business owner.
Best of all, TikTok shows how many times a post was reviewed and gives feedback for the duration of the viewings. Essentially, a small business can see the results of each post to gauge how influential their marketing is, immediately—this provides each marketer perspective on who they are reaching, and which videos make a better impact in their target demographic.
Pro marketing tip: the recording limit within the app is only 15 seconds, but you can combine multiple clips together and generate stories of up to 60 seconds.
Within TikTok, you have the option of doing what is known as a brand takeover. By providing entertaining, engaging, and informative content to your viewers, you have the opportunity to provide information about your business and link your website to each material. During a brand takeover, brands control the app for the day by creating GIFs, images, and videos on a massive scale. This tactic allows you to control the content and engage more viewers throughout the day, which can be a massive win for any small business.
People love a good challenge and during your brand takeover endeavors, a popular TikTok method is to promote your brand through hashtag challenges. The hashtag is linked to your site and is a quick way to get people talking about your product or service. This form of advertising has become what word of mouth was 40 years ago and, with hundreds of millions of people accessing the app at any given time, it is plain to see how spreading word about your business on TikTok can be very profitable.
A considerable aspect of self-branding within social media is ensuring you look ‘fire.’ TikTok, like many other social media apps, uses lenses to provide a different color to the picture or other various attributes. So, the more aesthetically pleasing the image, the more likely they are to post more the app.
Small businesses can use this to their advantage by providing branded lenses to followers. Your logo can be placed around the lens as a small logo in the corner. You may also choose to make your logo larger by providing an opaque version, like a watermark, covering a larger portion of the image.
How to Get the Most from Your TikTok Marketing
Like all social media apps, there are ways to make your company successful through its use, but there are also ways to limit your success. On TikTok, there are a few rules a small business should follow in order to get the most from their marketing experience.
Online marketing has come a long way and, although marketers are using artificial intelligence more, there will always be a necessary human touch. If you do not provide your customers with quality content, they are not going to invest their time in watching your videos or buying your products. Keep your content relevant to your brand as well as your potential client market. It is fine to be a little ‘tongue and cheek,’ but always remain on-brand and consistent.
The More Followers, the Better
Follower numbers matter in TikTok as they do with most social media networks. The point is to have multiple shares on your content, so if there are very few followers, you will garner very few shares.
TikTok is just one of the social media avenues available to the small business owner. With this form of marketing, you might be able to level the playing field and leapfrog some of your competitors. When you run a small business, it is vital to market yourself to the masses and, right now, the people are all on social media apps such as TikTok. So, take TikTok’s #levelupchallenge and get started growing your business and brand!