MIGRATE -- TikTok for Business

How to Use TikTok for Business

With over 800 million active users worldwide, TikTok is one of the fastest growing social media apps in the world. With what initially appeared to be a knock-off version of Vine, the app has proven to be much more than a place for just lip-syncing and dance battles. 

TikTok’s content features a wide variety of topics, ranging from 15-second makeup tutorials to coverage on the 2020 presidential elections. Whatever you can imagine, it’s probably already on TikTok. It’s no wonder why the latest platform is considered the home of Gen Z, as its content style is as unique as its users. 

But don’t be fooled, the video sharing app is home to an abundance of valuable opportunities for businesses and content creators alike. In fact, Tiktok is the latest and greatest place to build a strong brand personality and reach a wider audience. 

Learn how to successfully market your brand on TikTok to drive a higher volume of website traffic and increase ROI, by following a few simple steps. 

What Is TikTok?

First things first, TikTok is a social media app that can be used for creating and sharing short videos. It’s important to understand the many features of the app in order to produce high quality content and perform well on the platform.  

TikTok is all about creating fun and visually appealing content. The app encourages users to add music and special effects to their videos by providing an extensive music library that’s integrated with Apple Music. 

Users can also interact with other accounts, discover what’s trending and spend virtual coins that can be either bought or gifted. The higher the engagement (i.e. likes, views, and comments) the better chance a post has of being spotted on the platform's trending page. 

While there’s no rulebook, TikTok isn’t the best place for overly serious content. Make sure to take a look at the apps discovery page and explore what other brands have been doing before shooting your own videos.

You’ll find that lip syncing, dancing, and comedy sketches dominate the platform. The top performing videos on TikTok must captivate or shock users in under 15 seconds – certainly no easy feat. 

How to Promote Business on TikTok

Now that you know how to use the platform, it’s time to get creative. TikTok content can be pretty confusing as it’s oftentimes loud and chaotic. However, there is a method to the madness. 

Although there are a few outliers, the majority of TikTok videos follow a handful of molds. From awkward reaction videos to over-the-top skits, here are all the ways people are using the platform and how your brand can too.

Hashtag Challenge

Hashtag challenges are a big deal on nearly every social media platform, and TikTok is no different. Launching a hashtag challenge is a fantastic way to boost engagement by inviting the audience to participate in developing creative content on the brand’s behalf. 

Launching a brand-sponsored hashtag challenge can be done by simply purchasing a custom banner across the Discover page promoting your challenge. When users click on the banner, they will be promoted to watch your company’s video explaining or demonstrating the challenge. 

A successful hashtag challenge often receives millions of videos from participants around the world. A good example of a recent brand hashtag challenge is fashion retailer Guess’ #inmydenim challenge. The company prompted TikTok users to share a video of them going from rags to riches – in their Guess attire of course.

Other popular brands include Samsung, who used their hashtag challenge, #GalaxyA, to encourage users to advertise the phone’s newest features.

This is a great tool for fashion brands to highlight their variety of clothing and for technology companies to showcase their latest products and reach a wider audience. 

Influencer Collaboration

This one is a no brainer, especially on TikTok.

It’s no secret that influencers essentially run the social media platform, with many of the most prominent performers racking up millions of followers. Brands that are serious about making it on TikTok need to consider reaching out for a collaboration. 

A popular example of influencer marketing on TikTok is from Bang Energy, a sports energy drink company that partnered with the well-known influencer Danielle Cohn. The American actress, model, and social media influencer managed to rack up nearly 250,000 likes from her 17 million following on the sponsored video. 


Loving this Weather🌤 @bangenergy @bangenergy.ceo ##bangenergy ##CaffeineFree ##sponsor

♬ DJ Yames Mashup 7 - dj_yames

If your brand is looking to gain some real recognition, it’s important to understand how to work with influencers on TikTok. And before you get started, make sure to protect your brand perception and budget by avoiding influencer fraud with the help of an easy-to-use influencer fraud tool

In-Feed Video Ads

There are a number of ways to go about promoting TikTok videos on the platform, one of which is in-feed advertising. The selected video will appear in the For You section of a user feed and can be interacted with just like organic content. 

The major goal of this type of TikTok advertisement is to drive clicks to an internal or external page. Companies like Facebook and Apple have used this feature, hoping to draw TikTok users’ attention to their call to action.


Messenger is free for all devices and available internationally.

♬ original sound - sponsoredcontent1541

Considering that TikTok is currently the most downloaded app in the world, hitting 1 billion downloads in 2019, this method of reaching viewers is a vital part of any campaign strategy. In fact, the multinational cosmetics company Maybelline recently launched an in-feed ad campaign that earned the brand nearly 50,000 likes and 3,000 comments in one day.

To learn more about the social media platform’s evolution, it’s important to understand the real deal behind TikTok and explore the facts and figures that make this platform an integral part of your marketing plan. 

Branded Lenses

This one is super cool and if your company has the marketing budget for it, go for it.

Brands now have the ability to partner with TikTok and develop a 2D or 3D filter that users can try on and share. Plus, companies who decide to create their own filter will also be trending on the Discover tab for at least 10 days. 

This is a clever way brands can connect with TikTok users and enhance community engagement. Whether it’s a funny lense or a gamefied filter, your team will more than likely be able to sit back and watch user interactions skyrocket.

Brand Takeover 

The name of this one says it all, as brands have the opportunity to take over TikTok for an entire day. The company account may create images, GIFs, and videos with embedded links to internal or external landing pages. This content will be shown in users’ feeds before they see any other user content.

Because TikTok only allows one advertiser for this format per day, the social media platform  guarantees five million daily impressions exclusively from this method of advertising. That’s a hefty ROI rate from a three- to five-second video. 

A recent example of a brand that experienced major success using TikTok’s takeover feature is the cosmetic beauty line Too Faced. After only one day of running their ad, the company received 7.6 million ad impressions and 1.3 million clicks

Needless to say, the brand’s goal of cutting through the noise to inspire Gen Z females to shop the look was a major success. The brand not only exceeded their own expectations but raised the bar for beauty competitors around the world. 

Follow TikTok Trends – Don’t Try too Hard

TikTokers are notorious for rejecting traditional advertisements. This can likely be attributed to the platform's overwhelming young community age, which is 41 percent between 16 and 24 years old. 

TikTok is a place for brands to interact with users in a more informal manner. The content style should mimic that of a personal user and shouldn’t be overtly promotional.

Brands that can manage to create native ads and engage viewers will likely experience higher results.

Of course, staying authentic to your brand personality while conforming to the craziness of TikTok can be a challenge. However, here are a few surefire ways to grab user attention while staying native to the platform.

Demonstrate a Product 

TikTok is a great platform to show off a product or service without making it too gimmicky. Simply incorporating products into an already entertaining video will allow users to enjoy the post without feeling that their feed is being littered with unwanted advertisements. 

Fashion Nova, a popular online store, does a fantastic job of making their TikTok account funny and relevant while displaying their clothing line. Users can find try-on videos, comedy skits and even collaborations with the brand ambassador herself, Cardi B. 


Which ##fashionnova fit are you feeling? 😏 ##myfnfit

♬ A WEEK - esterdobrik

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Inspire Users

Viewers might not know how cool your brand is, so it’s your job to show them.

Using TikTok, your brand can inspire users on all the different ways to use your product. For service-based companies (like the Burger King example a little lower), it’s about creating videos that showcase the value of what you provide. 

Other examples of brands inspiring users can be found in the makeup industry. Companies like Kylie Cosmetics, Urban Decay, and Mac Cosmetics have all made an effort to share everything from casual to creative makeup looks on TikTok. 


@nemahsis bringing you Ruby Woo realness. Show us how you play your way with your fave lipstick shade. ##MACMyDay

♬ Mr. Sandman - ThatKidd

User Experience

As briefly mentioned, the TikTok platform is practically made for users to share their experience with particular products. Brands can use the best times to post on TikTok to their marketing advantage. From unboxing videos to product reviews, TikTok users are dying to give brands their unfiltered opinion.

Although a brand may need to contact an influencer in order to secure a product review, tons of users prefer to try items out for themselves. This chain of events typically lands the brand in the Discover page as trending.

Have Some Fun

Unlike some of its counterparts, TikTok is a place for brands to let loose and have some fun.

It’s not uncommon for companies to hop on popular trends, such as duets or dance collaborations. It’s a simple way to blend into users' feeds and flex a stronger brand personality. 

Burger King gave fans a good laugh by trying out the paper towel challenge. The trend is done by TikTokers who put a paper towel in water and more words come through to the surface the full statement.


not trynna share? we get it ##fyp ##burgerking #

♬ original sound - burgerking

The Takeaway 

Launching a TikTok page can feel daunting. The social media platform has tapped into a unique subculture that has required many of us to rethink what makes content engaging.

However, the platform is home to millions of users from around the world making TikTok the place to be for users and brands alike. 

If your brand hasn’t tried out TikTok, you’re not too late to build a loyal following and develop meaningful content. With a creative twist on content and an energetic attitude, your account can be on its way to building a loyal following and driving meaningful traffic.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on socialbakers.com. Any statistics or statements included in this article were current at the time of original publication.

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