How to Boost Your Brand in 2024 with TikTok Advertising

Since its international launch in 2016, it has swiftly ascended to the top tiers of social media apps, boasting billions of downloads and millions of active daily users.

TikTok / Douyin was initially launched into China’s App market in September 2016 by parent company Bytedance. In less than four years since its launch, TikTok generated over 3 billion downloads, reaching a third of the global social media user base. It took Facebook and Instagram almost a decade to get a user base that size.

TikTok currently has 1 billion monthly active users. Out of 4.48 billion active social media users, 22.32% use TikTok on a regular basis. In the U.S., TikTok has 150 million monthly active users.

Understanding the TikTok Audience

So why should you be using TikTok and getting to know your audience? Research shows that 35% of TikTok users have bought something off the platform and 44% of users discovered products through ads and content posted by brands.

Here are some interesting stats on who these TikTokers are:

As of 2023, 38.5% of TikTok users are between the ages of 18-24 and an additional 32.5% are between the ages of 25-34. More specifically, 71% of all TikTok adult users—or nearly three out of every four—fall within this age range.

This Gen Z demographic is notoriously difficult to reach via traditional advertising means, which makes TikTok a gold mine for brands targeting the Gen Z audience.

Advertising on TikTok

Here are several top advertising formats to try out in your TikTok advertising campaigns.

User-Generated Content

Unlike other platforms where polished, professional content reigns supreme, TikTok celebrates authenticity and spontaneity.

This means that user-generated content (UGC) has the potential to go viral. Brands can leverage this by encouraging users to create content around their products or services.

For instance, hashtag challenges have become a popular form of UGC-based advertising. By prompting users to create and share content around a specific hashtag, brands can amplify their reach organically.

Branded Hashtag Challenge

A branded hashtag challenge is a type of promotional campaign on platforms like TikTok or Instagram where brands encourage users to create and share content around a specific hashtag, usually related to the brand or a particular product.

These challenges leverage user-generated content (UGC) to promote the brand in a fun and engaging way. 35% of TikTok users have participated in a hashtag challenge at least once.

Here’s how it works:

  • A brand comes up with a specific challenge or theme and ties it to a unique hashtag. This can involve a particular dance move, a song, a DIY project, a makeover, or any other creative activity.
  • The brand promotes the challenge, often by posting their own content or by partnering with influencers to spread the word.
  • Users participate by creating their own videos or posts related to the challenge, and then they share it on their profiles using the designated hashtag.
  • As more users participate and share their creations, the hashtag gains popularity, leading to organic reach and engagement. The brand can also engage with participants by liking, commenting, or even sharing user-generated content on their own profiles or channels.

Branded hashtag challenges are particularly popular on TikTok due to the platform’s emphasis on community engagement, music, and dance trends. Such challenges can go viral quickly, providing brands with massive exposure and interaction with their target audience in an authentic manner.

A great example is Calvin Klein’s #OnlyInMyCalvins challenge.

In-Feed Ads

Similar to Instagram’s story ads, TikTok’s in-feed ads are short video ads that appear between user videos as one scrolls through their feed.

These ads can be up to 60 seconds long, are full-screen, and usually auto-play with sound on.

Source: Shuttlerock

Brand Takeovers

Brand takeovers are exclusive to one brand per day. During a takeover, brands can create images, GIFs, and videos with embedded links to landing pages or hashtag challenges.

This offers a unique opportunity to dominate user attention. This can be a perfect way to announce launches for recognizable products or brands, such as this example ad from Fortnite.

TopView Ads

These are essentially extended brand takeovers. TikTok’s Top-View allows advertisers to be the first piece of content that a user sees with a full-screen creative.

The ads start playing as soon as a user opens the app, ensuring maximum visibility. They offer a more extended, immersive experience compared to in-feed ads.

Shoppable TikTok Ads

TikTok also more recently introduced TikTok Shopping Ads. TikTok Shopping Ads are a specialized ad format designed to promote products directly within the TikTok app, allowing users to explore and potentially purchase products without having to leave the platform.

The ads are typically integrated seamlessly into the user’s feed, providing a native and unobtrusive shopping experience.

  • TikTok Shopping Ads feature clickable product links, making it easier for interested users to get detailed information or make a purchase.
  • With the power of video, brands can showcase their products in action, providing a more detailed and engaging view than traditional static images.

Tips for Successful TikTok Advertising

  1. Stay Authentic: TikTok users prize authenticity. Instead of pushing polished content, focus on creating genuine, relatable ads that resonate with the platform’s spirit.
  2. Use Music Wisely: TikTok is, at its heart, a platform centered around music. Integrating popular or catchy music into your ads can significantly increase engagement rates.
  3. Engage with Trends: Keep an eye on trending challenges, sounds, and effects. If relevant, incorporate them into your advertising strategy.
  4. Analyze and Adapt: Use TikTok’s analytics to monitor the performance of your ads. This can provide insights into what’s working and what’s not, allowing you to adjust your strategy accordingly.

TikTok offers a unique blend of content creation, engagement, and audience reach, making it a great platform, especially for brands looking to reach younger audiences.

TikTok Advertising Solutions

Need to ramp up your TikTok advertising strategy? Learn how we can help you build an audience and crush your KPIs.

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