In this guest post, Ogilvy account executive Emma Debus (lead image) says if your brand isn’t utilising the power of TikTok – particularly if you’re chasing the Zs – then it’s one hell of a massive missed opportunity…
There’s a rush, a disbelief, and a thrill when you see the views on a TikTok post climbing. Whether it’s your personal account or your brand’s account, gaining significant organic reach for content can feel electrifying. And on TikTok, it can happen more than on any other platform
However, as a Gen Zer, nothing grinds my gears more than brands that don’t really understand the platform. And as someone working in advertising, I just can’t comprehend brands that aren’t on the platform if they have a target market of under 25-year-olds.
In December 2021, I was isolating, due to being a dreaded ‘close contact’. Like most people, I got very, VERY bored. So, seeming as I was applying for rental properties at the time, I started looking in deep detail into all the properties that I had inspected. On TikTok, I told my story of how a woman died in a house that I applied for, and was actually dead for nine years before anyone found her . . . and the post blew up.
I mean proper blew up. The story was covered by Daily Mail, Pedestrian, News.com, and even went international – if you count across the Tasman – featuring in the New Zealand Herald. If you Google “Haunted house Surry Hills”, my face is still likely to show up. Since then, I had another TikTok post that reached 2 million people, utilising a trending sound.
So with a base of followers, I decided to get into day in the life vlogging, a more sustainable hobby that connects me with like-minded people. As I ingest my days into my TikTok, I have become familiar with a platform that is the fastest growing advertising opportunity.
Yet here’s the thing: I’m not special. So many people and brands go ‘viral’ on TikTok.
Viral, by definition, is a piece of content that is rapidly and widely circulated from one internet user to another. If the goal of your company’s advertising is to gain awareness, then TikTok has the greatest potential to do so. What’s more, TikTok’s algorithm allows organic branded content to be targeted towards people who have a vested interest in the content’s themes. This means that your product or service is being promoted to your desired target market in a more sophisticated way than just ‘age’ and ‘gender’.
“Emma, I get it – we need to be on TikTok, But how?”
I’ve sold the dream of successful advertising to your specific target market with no media spend. But this is only possible if your brand evolves to fit on the platform.
TikTok never reveals the nitty gritty on what content their algorithm favours. Although, from analysing well performing posts, there are techniques that allow your content to be favoured on the For You page such as utilising trending sounds, hashtags or using engaging hooks.
This is why young girls doing viral dances on the street has become the norm – the trending music gives them the potential to blow up. These techniques help drive the possibility of a brand’s video, and in turn, the brand’s TikTok account becoming viral.
As someone working at a creative agency, I always back the power of the creative work. TikTok doesn’t care if you were cool in high school, they care if your content is interesting and entertaining. Remember, your posts shouldn’t look like ads.
A key creative consideration when launching your brands TikTok is finding your ‘that’.
“That what?” I hear you ask. That plane with eyes. That CEO of replying. That Owl just tryna vibe. Do this, and despite only providing your audience with short form content, you can build a strong and identifiable brand personality. Chat to a creative agency with people who are well versed on the platform to help you nail this pillar.
Finally, if you’re the marketing lead for your brand, you need to get yourself familiar with the nature of the platform. The quickest way to learn is downloading the app and scrolling. As TikTok marketing agencies emerge, the key difference between these agencies and other agencies are their staff’s time investment on the platform. You have the greatest capabilities to explode your brand on TikTok if you receive less polished content from your creatives that is fit for platform with open arms.
So, if your brand isn’t on TikTok what are you waiting for?