TikTok’s hidden opportunities for advertisers

TikTok is no longer seen as a dance app for Gen-Z. Other generations and content abound. Advertisers can now use the playful platform in a targeted way with TikTok advertising.

TikTok’s proposition is different from other social channels, such as Instagram or Facebook. There is no normal timeline, but a special ‘For You’ page which can determine where your interest lies after a few videos with a rock-solid algorithm. You go to TikTok to be entertained or learn something with short videos. The tone is noticeably more positive than on other social media; on the one hand because of the emphasis on music, it is a sound on platform, and on the other hand because of the sense of community. Tiktokkers personally address their audience, making the interaction much more authentic and intimate.

TikTok is currently interesting to advertisers because of the high engagement that can be achieved. Users like to interact with both paid and organic content on the platform. It is clear that users are inspired by the platform to buy products. Videos with the hashtag #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt have been viewed more than 11.6 billion times.

TikTok has grown into a mature advertising platform

As a brand or company, you advertise on TikTok via the advertising platform, which is currently being developed at a rapid pace. Where it was initially only possible to buy advertising space via a TikTok account administrator, the self-service platform TikTok Ad Manager has been opened up to advertisers since last year.

Just like via Meta Ads Manager, it is possible to buy campaigns with different purposes. TikTok campaigns can be purchased with the following goals: reach, traffic, app installs, video views, lead generation, community interaction, conversions and catalog sales. The TikTok pixel was created to accurately measure conversions. The TikTok pixel has been working with both first- and third-party cookies since March. Since the addition of first-party cookies, we see our retargeting audience grow, we can optimize the campaigns at events later, and we measure the different events in the purchase process better.

Quality Content Score

Playful, creative and above all entertaining. TikTok sets the bar high. You notice this, for example, in the large amount of TikTok videos that you can find on Facebook or Instagram; not the other way around. As a platform where the sound is always on, users can recognize the music from ads and TikToks and thus get a stronger connection to the brand. In addition, TikTok offers the opportunity to collaborate with creators, artists and influencers. The Creator Marketplace originated from one of TikTok’s first advertising opportunities, where brands could only partner with influencers to promote their product or brand. TikTok creators know how to make content connect with their followers in a creative and appropriate way.

For example, ASOS used the power of popular content creators to increase their brand presence in the US and UK. With a custom music track and an interactive ‘brand effect’, the brand managed to reach 1.2 billion views in the TikTok campaign with Dept and significantly increase their brand awareness.

Why You Can’t Ignore TikTok Anymore

With all the interesting advertising options and the ability to outsource content creation, the question is why marketers are still hesitant. I have listed the most common misconceptions for you.

  1. “TikTok is only interesting as an upper funnel channel. We primarily want to achieve conversions.”
    Just like on Facebook and Instagram, you can advertise on TikTok on various goals throughout the funnel, including conversion, website interaction and revenue. Adweek research shows that 49% of TikTok users have purchased a product after seeing it on TikTok.
  2. “TikTok is only for Generation Z. Our target audience cannot be found on TikTok.”
    According to Newcom’s annual social media survey, the largest target group is 15-19 year olds with 640,000 users against 180,000 last year. This means that 42% of this target group can be found on the platform. However, the target group aged 20-24 grew from 110,000 to 695,000 users, a threefold increase. The number of users aged 25-29 also doubled from 100,000 to 465,000 between 2020 and 2021. In short: As with other social media, the average age is shifting further. Because the algorithm displays different content per target group and interests, different age groups can easily be active next to each other on the platform.
  3. “We don’t know how to make the content.”
    Brands that prefer not to hire a full-time TikTok creator have the option to bet on influencer marketing. Through the Creator Marketplace, you can search for collaborations with creators who have already built their own audience and are open to assignments. You can also create a task that creators can sign up for. For example, Dept created a successful TikTok campaign for Polaroid to bring the Polaroid Go camera to the attention of young people. TikTok influencers were given the freedom to make short videos showcasing the Polaroid Go. The confidence in the creativity of the creators ensured a strong performance and huge reach of the campaign.
  4. “It takes big budgets to start advertising.”
    With your own video, you can start with 50 euros per day. TikTok’s advertising platform works almost the same way as MetaBusiness Manager. You create campaigns and ads, and you can easily see all videos and interactions.
  5. “The organic profile has to be absolutely perfect before we can start advertising.”
    When the purpose of the campaign is traffic to the website, the clicks on the ad go directly to the link behind it, not to the organic TikTok profile. You can also start without an organic profile: the username and profile picture will then be removed from the ad. The profile is therefore anything but an obligation to get started. However, it is wise to get your business verified for reliability.
Don’t wait any longer

In recent years, TikTok has grown into a platform with broad advertising opportunities for brands looking for a personal connection with their consumers. The secret behind successful brands on TikTok? There is no perfect time to start. TikTok welcomes new brands to the platform; 75% of users indicate that they have discovered new brands and artists thanks to TikTok. Will this be your brand next year? The social team at DEPT® will be happy to help you.

About the author: Laura van Velden is a Digital Marketing Consultant at Dept.

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