While Instagram goes through its seemingly 100th identity crisis in less than five years, many businesses are wondering if now is the right time to hop on the TikTok bandwagon. As an avid user and someone who’s grown their page to 40k followers in a year’s time (as a hobby, not a business), my answer is: it depends.
Do you have a TikTok target audience?
By now, we know that TikTok’s audience demographics skew younger – but that doesn’t automatically mean you don’t have a shot on the app. The best part about TikTok is its search functionality. It operates very similarly to Google. To determine if your target audience is on TikTok, all you need to do is type different keywords into the search bar. It even lets you sort your search by date and relevance.
I’d recommend creating an exploratory account and poking around using the search function to see if you have a TikTok target market.
Do you have a TikTok posting strategy?
There’s some good news and bad news regarding posting on TikTok.
The good news is that TikTok users favor unfiltered, low-production content. Take a look at this screenshot from my page – I hit some of my highest numbers simply when I talk to the camera.
The bad news about posting on TikTok is that the platform wants you to do it – a lot. Think three times a day. If you’re already making your social media manager run multiple social platforms, take photos, write copy, run ads, stand on their head, do backflips – please don’t expect them to do this, too. Instead, invest in some user-generated content if you are dead-set on getting on TikTok. Or at least manage your expectations.
Can you bring value to your TikTok audience?
Since you don’t have to worry about feed curation (TikTokers don’t give a s**t if your page looks pretty), you can post just about anything – as long as it relates to your niche. Say you have a sustainable clothing company. You can make “behind the scenes” videos at your garment factory, educational talking head content (the dark side of fast fashion, how your clothing is made, etc.), close-up product shots, and styling videos. The options are endless!
There’s a caveat here – TikTok users, more than anyone else I’ve noticed, have the nose of a bloodhound when it comes to sniffing out inauthentic content. If your videos seem forced – or even worse – mirror what you post on “aesthetic” Instagram – you’re not going to get very far.
One of the best examples of this notion is represented by my favorite creator, Sammi Jefcoate. Sammi is a British woman who posts daily fashion vlogs and styling videos. While on the surface, she might come off as an influencer (she’s not – she’s a business owner) and too “put together” for TikTok, she addresses her million-plus followers with humility and complete awareness of her wealthy status. It is refreshing to see, and her TikTok audience loves it.
TikTok Quick Tips
Just like you’d optimize your website, you need to optimize your TikTok content. Use relevant hashtags, use the caption feature, and use text-on-screen for relevant keywords.
Always use captions if someone is speaking in your video. And don’t be lazy: edit your captions for clarity. If you use curse words, delete them from the captions. Some say the algorithm will punish you if you don’t.
Use trending audio. This is pretty self-explanatory.
Follow up on your content. If someone posts a question in the comments, respond with a video comment.
Follow the trends – only if it makes sense for your brand and you don’t look silly doing it.
Stumped on where to start with your TikTok posting strategy? I help small businesses and entrepreneurs craft long-term strategies for organic growth. Send me an email to learn more about how I can create TikTok videos for your brand.