With a staggering 800 million monthly users, and the most downloaded app as of the beginning of 2020, TikTok is already a force to be reckoned with. Some commentators such as Gary Vaynerchuk even reckon that it will soon be the go-to platform of choice ahead of Instagram. Phew!
And if you think that this platform is a lot of stuff and nonsense with multi-generational videos of cheesy little set piece dances, you would be completely wrong. Already it has a pro-account aimed at businesses, which gives you full analytics, and TikTok are spending millions on advertising the platform on mainstream channels like network TV.
Currently it is a video-only platform with the standard video lasting 15 seconds, although you can string together a series of them to make 60 seconds. There are rumours swirling around that they will start accepting still images as well soon, which would really represent a big threat to Instagram.
So how do you use TikTok for business?
First download the app on a personal level and start using it to get into the swing of it. It is dead easy (well, it is for my 12-year-old daughter…) and all the tools you need are in the app to record, edit and add effects.
Once you are in there take a look around and see what people are recording and take a peek of at what the brands are doing. The Top 10 brands on TikTok are a mixed bag of car manufacturers, cosmetics companies, fashion labels and – surprisingly – The Washington Post and heading the charge is the NBA (National Basketball Association), who were an early adopter.
There are some interesting features with TikTok. One of these is their algorithm, which they are quite Secret Squirrel about but basically it allows people to gain a lot of views and followers very quickly if a video catches on. In addition existing, older content can also go viral – they are not just promoting new content.
There is also a geo-location element to it, which means that it is good for promoting products and services in a particular area.
Trends are a huge thing on TikTok so take a good look at trending hashtags AND sounds, which can mean that your videos get pulled into Discovery pages and quickly gain traction.
Another really interesting feature is that that have a Creator Marketplace so that you can link up with Influencers and other brands who you can work with – so TikTok are taking some of the slog out of influencer marketing for you. Combined with multiple paid ‘sponsored’ advertising options, it really is a rich hunting ground for brands who want to make a mark quickly.
TikTok is a really exciting platform and we are in the early stages of working on our pro-account as well as working with clients.
We will certainly be writing more about it in the coming weeks, but in the meantime, we urge you to check it out, and if you want to incorporate TikTok into your social media marketing and strategy then why don’t we have a chat? But just finally…
A note of caution
There have been various security concerns with apps looking at text or images that are sitting on your clipboard and TikTok is one of the culprits. Apple has just fixed this loophole in their latest iOS 13.5.1 update but it’s not clear if Android users are protected. Just a heads up…