How to advertise on TikTok effectively

How to advertise on TikTok effectively

Updated 3 November 2022

TikTok is one of the newer social media sensations that’s taken off in the last couple of years.

Without needing hefty brand marketing budgets to run successful campaigns, the app has been adopted by influencers and brands across the board. However, there are a number of things you should learn about running marketing campaigns on the platform. Keep reading to learn more. 

Top 6 tips to create TikTok ads

1. Check that your ad creative is suitable for TikTok

Growing research shows that TikTok users access all sorts of content: humour, dance, educational, informational, cooking and so, SO much more. However, the parallel between all these content verticals is the unique style of content. It’s a style specific to TikTok. This means short, audio-visual ‘stories’ that are typically between 15 seconds and 2 minutes long. Think of it almost like a short-motion picture.

Our three recommendations to consider when you're developing your ad content:

  • Pick a topic.

  • Be authentic.

  • Use the TikTok discovery tab to find trending organic content.

Advertisers often forget that being on TikTok isn’t about running a flashy branded ad you’d think to run on platforms like on TV, YouTube, Google or even Facebook and Instagram to some degree. TikTok creative when it comes to advertising is about blending in into the feed – not in a passive but in a TikTok content-specific way.

2. Set your expectations

When just beginning to advertise on TikTok, you need to allow the algorithm to find the people most suited to you in terms of interests and demographic data. TikTok allows you to target a wide span of different interests, similar to Facebook and Instagram. However, you still need to give the algorithm a degree of freedom in the early stages to do its machine learning to find the audience most likely to engage with your content. Don’t ask for too much too soon. This means, have an appropriate plan when it comes to finding users who are engaging with your organic content first, before running a full paid media campaign. And here is why.

3. Post organic content regularly and cultivate a loyal following 

TikTok’s algorithm for organic content far supersedes that of anything else we’ve ever seen. According to TikTok: “The system recommends content by ranking videos based on a combination of factors – starting from interest you express as a new user, and adjusting for things you indicate you’re not interested in.”

In other words, you can gather a lot of insightful data about what content is clicking with users before investing any extra media spend. Leverage this data to build a cohesive profile of creative insights for your paid campaigns.

4. Optimise your content platform for search

TikTok recently announced they were going to increase description sections of their videos which will allow for users and creators to ‘optimise’ their content for search. This is a pretty impressive feature to add into their offering for creators and advertisers. This will have a huge impact for advertisers and content creators, as it allows anyone advertising to be more strategic about the content they’re posting, with the added reach increasing the reach of your campaigns by including specific keywords.

5. Make use of the lead generation tool

TikTok has been trialling an on-platform lead tool, very similar to Facebook lead forms or Google lead forms. Essentially, the key difference here is instead of direction away from the app and to a website or other destination for lead capture, the tool is built natively into the app, which is great for on-platform conversion campaigns.

6. Define a campaign strategy specific to TikTok

And finally, like with any other online advertising platform, it’s really crucial to get the marketing strategy and campaign structure over your campaigns refined over time for the best chance of success.

Speak to us to learn more about a tailored TikTok marketing strategy for your business.

Written by

Annie Reid

Annie is an active digital marketer with a customer-centric perspective on consumer and business relations.