30-second summary:

  • TikTok is a new channel that can help brands diversify their advertisement campaigns and reach new audiences
  • It is important to learn the know-how of how to operate, strategize and optimize ads on TikTok so that DTCs can reap the maximum benefits
  • This article takes you through the steps of creating and structuring TikTok ad campaigns and devise ways to measure their effectiveness and success

In a recent report by App Annie, TikTok ranked #2 in the breakout app spend chart in 2021(this chart ranks apps that have registered the biggest change in spend over 12 months). Everyone is talking about TikTok lately. Even Mark Zuckerberg is trying to keep up with it. But what does all of this mean for business, especially when it comes to advertising? The good news is that TikTok can be a great channel to diversify your advertising efforts and reach a new audience. In fact, if you’re not running ads on TikTok right now, you could be missing out on some of the lowest cost traffic since Facebook in 2015. In this article, we’ll give beginners a step-by-step breakdown of how to get started with TikTok ad campaigns and measurements.

Maximizing TikTok ads: The key to successful campaigns

With over a billion active users, TikTok has become one of the fastest growing social media platforms in the world. With such a large and engaged audience, it’s no wonder that businesses are starting to take notice of this platform as a marketing tool. However, as with any new platform, there are challenges to overcome to effectively market on TikTok. One of the biggest challenges is figuring out how to measure the success of your TikTok campaigns. It’s not as simple as just tracking clicks and likes, you must dig deeper to really understand the impact of your campaigns on this unique platform. But with a little creativity and some trial and error, you can figure out how to effectively market on TikTok and reach a whole new audience.

Know your TikTok target audience

In a recent webinar featuring TikTok, Nest Commerce and Fospha, Dave Mossey from TikTok discussed the importance of having a clear understanding of your target audience. According to him “Knowing your target audience is key to developing effective TikTok campaigns. You need to understand who your target audience is, what they like, and what they are interested in, in order to create content that resonates with them.”

The experts in the webinar also noted that TikTok has a younger demographic compared to other social media platforms, which makes it an ideal platform for reaching millennials and Generation Z, but also creates challenges to advertise profitably to older demographics. “TikTok has a younger demographic compared to other social media platforms, which makes it a great platform for reaching millennials and Generation Z.”

It is thus really important for marketers to carefully understand TikTok’s user base, determine if there is an opportunity for their business, and decide how to best tailor their content and strategy to their target audience.

Although re-cycling Meta content to run on TikTok may be an appealing shortcut, this is likely to not work for your brand. One of the best strategies for running successful TikTok campaigns is to create videos that look and feel like native TikToks. This includes filming everything on your phone, using the TikTok editor, and using native fonts to create an ad that fits seamlessly into the platform.

If you’re unsure on how to get started, here are a few creative guidelines your business can use:

First things first, you need a strong hook

The first three seconds of an advertisement are crucial in capturing the viewer’s attention – use visually and audibly striking elements to capture the audience’s interest.

Think about fueling the problem

After grabbing the viewer’s attention, highlight the problem that your product solves. Use a relatable voiceover while showing the product in use to help viewers visualize themselves using it.

Why do you want to sell your product?

Explain how your product solves the problem and why it’s the best solution. Showcase the product in use to give viewers an immersive experience. Highlight its features, usage instructions, and expected results.

Your call-to-action needs to stand out

A subtle yet persuasive call-to-action that ties back to the hook works best. You could ask the viewer which feature they’d like to try or ask them to click the link to learn more.

Lastly, play around with different hooks and structures

Find a structure that works well for your product, take the viewer through a journey, and experiment by changing the hooks to see what works best.

Optimizing your TikTok ad campaign

Once you’ve refined the content piece, it’s time to decide on a specific structure for your campaign. We’ve tested different approaches, but this structure has been the most effective lately.

Test campaigns

To begin with TikTok ads, we suggest starting with a testing campaign optimized for conversions using Automatic Creative Optimization and Automatic Targeting. For testing four different creatives, create one Ad Set for each creative with settings such as website promotion, your pixel, completing payment as the optimization event, automatic placement for placements, turning ACO on for creative type, and automatic targeting for targeting. Set your preferred geographic location, start with a budget of $50-$100, and start at midnight on any day. Use value as the optimization goal if you have it, otherwise, use conversion. There is no need to set a minimum return on ad spend (ROAS) for your bid strategy.

Configuring TikTok ads

To launch a successful ad campaign, start by establishing your unique identity with your brand’s name and logo or by creating a new identity to give a more authentic feel, especially if you’re using user-generated content (UGC). Then, upload your video content and include five distinct headlines to experiment with. Don’t forget to provide your website’s landing page URL and ensure that you’re using the appropriate UTM parameters for precise data reporting. Finally, launch your ads and monitor their performance to make adjustments as needed.

Ensuring long-term success on TikTok

To stay on top of your game with TikTok ads, you need to have a weekly source of fresh content. TikTok ads tend to lose their appeal faster than Facebook ads, so it’s important to have a steady flow of 5-10 pieces of content to constantly test. You don’t have to come up with completely new creatives. Instead, try different hooks and angles for the first three seconds of the same video to see what works best. Additionally, don’t forget to test offers and landing pages to ensure high conversion rates and compelling offers that encourage users to make a purchase.

Hashtags, ad formats, brand takeovers, sponsored lenses, and influencer marketing

One of the unique features of TikTok is its use of hashtags and hashtag challenges. TikTok’s experts note that these can be a great way to reach a wider audience and engage with them. “Hashtags and challenges are a great way to get your content in front of a wider audience and to get people talking about your brand,” said Dave Mossey.

In addition to hashtags and challenges, TikTok also offers a variety of ad formats that businesses can use to reach their target audience. These include in-feed ads, brand takeovers, and sponsored lenses.
In-feed ads are short video ads that appear in users’ TikTok feeds. These ads can be up to 60 seconds long and can be targeted to specific demographics, such as age, location, and interests.

Brand takeovers are full-screen ads that appear when users open the TikTok app. These ads are a great way to make a big impact and reach a wide audience.

Sponsored lenses are interactive filters that users can apply to their videos. These filters can be used to promote a product or service and are a fun and engaging way to reach your target audience.

Another important aspect of TikTok marketing is the use of influencer marketing. According to the experts in the webinar mentioned above, “Influencer marketing is a powerful tool on TikTok, as the platform has a large and engaged user base that trusts the opinions of influencers”. Influencer marketing can be a great way to reach a wider audience and build brand awareness. By partnering with influencers who have a large following, businesses can get their message in front of a large number of people.

TikTok’s measurement problem

While acknowledging the opportunity TikTok represents, Jamie Bolton (Head of Growth at Fospha) argues that “Measuring the impact of TikTok campaigns can be challenging, as the platform is still relatively new and there is a lack of standardized metrics and tracking tools available.” This can make it difficult for businesses to determine the return on investment (ROI) of their TikTok campaigns.

Solutions to the TikTok measurement problem

However, this is where marketing measurement platforms like Fospha can come in to help. Attribution platforms offer a comprehensive suite of tools that help businesses track and measure their TikTok campaigns. By tracking end-to-end multi-touch customer journeys, these platforms enable businesses to accurately weigh their profitability and get a clearer understanding of the impact of TikTok campaigns on their bottom line.

The key takeaway

In conclusion, TikTok is a powerful platform that is growing rapidly with a large and highly engaged user base. With its range of ad formats and the ability to leverage influencer marketing, businesses can expand their reach and build brand awareness in exciting new ways. However, measuring the success of TikTok campaigns can be difficult due to the lack of standardized metrics and tracking tools available. Nevertheless, there are solutions out there that brands can reach out to to ensure their content, strategy, implementation and measurement are set up to deliver the best possible value and results.

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