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What Is TikTok and Does It Make Sense for Small Businesses?

TikTok’s journey from a Chinese startup to a global social media powerhouse was powered by an innovative approach to short-form video content. By offering innovative editing tools and focusing on short videos made for smartphones, TikTok now has over 150 million users, making it one of the top social media platforms in America.

TikTok users skew young, with most users being 35 and under. While 15% are 35-44, just 14% are 45+. According to TikTok, users are highly engaged. The average user spends almost an hour a day on TikTok. One in three say they have bought a product they discovered on TikTok.

However, creating content and ads for TikTok presents some special challenges. If you are a small business owner who wonders if TikTok is right for you, here are a few things to consider.

This Is a Video-Only Format

If you want to run posts or ads on TikTok, you must create vertical videos, which are the only format the platform accepts.

Not a Place for Standard Video

One reason TikTok is so popular is that it is inundated with clever, engaging videos. The bar for getting attention is high. Some of the best content creators in the world spend their time and energy on TikTok, so you better bring your A game.

A Great Place to Explain

If you want or need to explain your product, how it works, or why it's better, TikTok may be a good choice. It's a great place to demonstrate how your products work or highlight unique features.

Full of Influencers

TikTok is full of influencers, people who have built a large following and sometimes accept paid placement deals. When you place your product with an influencer, you can expect instant reach. However, finding an influencer who makes sense with your product or service is not always easy.

Requires Engagement

TikTok is social, so if you create a brand space, you'll need to plan to interact with users who comment on your videos. Without an account manager to monitor comments, you'll have difficulties creating momentum.

Effective Ad Tools

If you're not willing or able to build a huge following, you can still reach your audience through paid ads. Like all social media, TikTok offers a range of paid media options and excellent audience targeting tools, so you can focus reach on the people who are most likely to buy your product.

A Place to Create Connections

Younger consumers care about brand values. Maybe that's why TikTok is full of narrative brand videos. Founders or spokespeople tell the story of the brand, its missions, its values, and more. Customer stories and testimonials are also popular.

Stay Local or Go Wide

Because TikTok has a large U.S. user base, it's often possible to create very localized ad campaigns at an affordable price. You can limit your ad campaign to your market area, even if that market area is just one county or even one town.

Want to Learn More?

There are lots of ways to use TikTok to grow your small business, and we're here to help. If you want to know more, contact Cup O Content for a free consultation.

Or check out these articles.


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