Is TikTok for You? Short Answer: Yes

Katie steeb
Oct 19, 2023
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Even with a potential TikTok ban on the horizon, one truth brands need to know is: TikTok isn’t a trend. It’s a force.

Since its inception, TikTok has evolved, soared and positioned itself as a mainstay in the global social media landscape. Once dismissed as a “Gen Z playground,” TikTok has matured into a huge opportunity for brands.

The Ultimate TikTok Marketing Guide for Commerce CMOs

From its changing algorithms to innovative advertising tools, TikTok continues to redefine how brands communicate, engage and sell. If you’re a commerce brand  contemplating your next big move, TikTok is a must for 2024 marketing.

Dive in with us as we explore how you can harness TikTok’s potential for success.

The TikTok Advertising Myth Busted

The common misconception we hear from brands is: “Oh, TikTok? That’s just for kids, right?”

TikTok has moved beyond a platform for viral dance challenges — it’s a potent tool for driving lower-funnel sales conversions, especially with the recent introduction of TikTok Shop.

4 in 10 users buy a product after seeing it on TikTok, and 67% of users say TikTok inspires them to shop even when they’re not planning to.

How’s that for ROI?

The “Secret Sauce” of TikTok Advertising

Ready to dip your toes into TikTok advertising? Follow these expert tips and strategies to get the most out of your investment.

1. Use the Right Measurement Methodologies and Platforms

As with any marketing tactic or channel, you want TikTok to tie back to the other channels you’re using in a campaign and ultimately align with higher business outcomes (as much as is possible) such as ROAS and ROI.

To ensure a successful measurement strategy, take a zoom-out approach outside of channels and first focus on the larger business outcome you’re seeking with your campaigns. What key question(s) are you trying to answer? What metrics will matter to non-marketing, C-suite leaders? Then, develop your measurement strategy from there and incorporate TikTok along with any other channels you may be using in your campaigns.

From a more tactical level, use platforms such as Google Analytics, MOAT and Foursquare to track your TikTok campaign impact. TikTok’s Attribution Manager is a great tool because you can customize attribution windows, and it credits based on your customer journey and product.

The following measurement methodologies are helpful for analyzing TikTok results especially when other channels are involved:

  • Sales or brand lift studies
  • Post-purchase surveys
  • Third-party media mix modeling (MMM)
  • Third-party multi-touch attribution (MTA)
  • Third-party store visit attribution

2. Creative Is King

TikTok isn’t simply a social media platform — it’s an entertainment platform, which means your ads need to entertain. Forget repurposing TV ads; TikTok viewers crave user-generated content (UGC). Make your content authentic, engaging and fun.

Aim for three to five pieces of content minimum when exploring paid TikTok ads, and refresh your ads often.

Here’s a tip: TikTok offers an Automated Creative Optimization (ACO) feature that takes your content and spins it into eight unique variations. Perfect for A/B testing!

3. Let TikTok’s Algorithm Work Its Magic

Starting with TikTok advertising is like other platforms, but with a twist.

Your strategy can be mid-funnel or even low-funnel. However, TikTok’s algorithm focuses on attributed conversions rather than all website conversions. Translation? It requires more time to fine-tune during the learning phase. For optimal results, begin with the upper- to mid-funnel and then progress downwards once you hit 50 conversions a week.

4. Collaborate and Innovate

Not sure about content creation? TikTok’s got you covered with its Creator Marketplace or the TikTok Creative Exchange program. This tool is a haven where you can collaborate with influencers or regular folks who make captivating videos on your behalf. For brands just starting out in the TikTok world, the Creator Marketplace is an excellent place to begin.

5. Optimize TikTok for Your Sales Funnel

Use TikTok to pique interest.

Start at the upper- to mid-funnel levels, primarily focusing on reach, frequency, video views, and the new metric — engaged views. Once you gain traction, move to the lower funnel, especially if you’re looking at sales conversions. Remember, the key is patience. Plan for a solid three months to gauge true ROI.

6. Focus on the KPIs That Matter

Eager to understand how TikTok metrics tie back to your KPIs?

Take video completion rate as an example. High rates indicate that your audience finds your content engaging — a positive signal for brand recall and potential conversions. On the other hand, monitoring your engaged views can provide deeper insights into the potential for future conversions.

7. Test Your Targeting

A burning question we often get is about generational targeting.

The magic word? Test.

Trends on TikTok change rapidly. Jumping on a trend before it fades can lead to significant engagement. While many brands feel the need to modify their content based on age groups, it’s not always necessary. Instead, keep a keen eye on how different age groups interact with your content and adjust accordingly.

Final Thoughts

TikTok offers a fresh, interactive space to connect with consumers beyond traditional advertising norms. As you plan your next moves for 2024, remember to build in a TikTok strategy.

Want to learn more about TikTok and paid social media marketing? We’re here to help.

About the Author:

Based in Ann Arbor, Mich., Katie Steeb is a senior media manager at Goodway Group who serves as the organization’s TikTok subject matter expert (SME). Katie is known for being a creative innovator with a proven record of driving customer engagement and conversions through the strategic use of social and digital advertising. She brings expertise in all forms of digital marketing from inception to execution and review.

Google is Katie’s best friend; she’s a self-learner. Katie loves webinars and staying up-to-date with digital marketing articles. She reads food ingredient labels. Katie is an outside-of-the-box millennial with backyard chickens, a huge garden and a love of canning.

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