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Social media has reshaped the world of ads and brand marketing. Instead of paying for TV time, brands and businesses are able to create a variety of low-cost content across numerous platforms to reach an even larger number of people.

With over 1 billion users – and still growing – TikTok is the top new social media app on the market. And, as a result, TikTok is a highly competitive space for brands to grow their audience and generate leads.

Why TikTok?

You might be wondering what makes TikTok stand out from tried and true platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Even though all are social media platforms, and each one allows for overlap in the kind of content you can create, TikTok is the only platform that prioritizes short-form videos.

Instead of scrolling through captions and pictures, a good looped video commands your attention for at least its duration. With trendy audio and clever transitions, some videos entice viewers to watch over and over, holding their attention longer and thus increasing the video’s – and creator’s – popularity.

Those 5-15 seconds of attention are all it takes to generate leads!

Since TikTok is so new, the markets there are less saturated than pre-existing platforms. What this means is it’s easier for your brand to stand out on TikTok, even with the same hashtags you use on other platforms.

On a foundational level, this why every marketing director and media team should incorporate TikTok marketing into their brand development.

How to Reach a Wider Audience with TikTok

TikTok’s viral nature and newness give it unparalleled versatility when it comes to creating content with a wide reach. People are still learning the algorithm, and without metrics, all we know for certain is that the app favors organic creator-driven content and wants to hold viewers’ attention as long as possible.

So, with the goal of creating something people will want to watch in mind, let’s talk about how your brand can reach a wider audience.

Diversify Content

The first half of our tips are going to focus on how TikTok marketing is founded on playing the field. You’re not just on TikTok to market your products. You’re building brand awareness by talking around your products and around your business with content that is purely informational, educational, and entertaining.

Hashtag Challenges

Creating within this TikTok-specific trend nearly guarantees the success of your video. Hashtag challenges pair specific hashtags with a specific action and encourage viewers to recreate the video, showcasing themselves doing the same thing.

By jumping on an already popular trend, you can ride a viral wave while building brand awareness by adding a brand-specific touch to your take on a challenge.

Take it a step further and create a branded hashtag challenge. As the originator, you make the rules and the challenge can be a better fit for your products. By encouraging users to get involved, not only are you expanding the reach of your brand, but you generate leads with free publicity as each viewer becomes a creator marketing your message with their hashtag challenge video.

For You Page: Viral Trends

Continuing with the theme of going viral, check the For You Page to see what hashtags and challenges are popular right now. If you’re ever having trouble thinking up content, the For You Page is a great place to start, and you’re already five steps ahead by focusing on what you know is popular.

One of the great things about pulling inspiration from outside sources is that it forces you and your marketing team to think outside of the box and look at your brand through a new lens. You might find new ways to market your products or new markets for your products.

Essentially, diversifying your content in this way allows you to generate leads in communities you might have overlooked.

Ads that Aren’t Ads

One of the reasons TikTok marketing is so important today is because TikTok is Gen Z’s virtual playground. It’s where they learn, network, create, and buy. And as the emerging generation of consumers, building relationships with them now will benefit you in the long run as more and more Gen Z’ers enter the workforce.

So, how do you appeal to Gen Z? With ads that aren’t ads. In addition to pointedly branded content, TikTok marketing encourages a balance with non-branded – purely educational, informational, and entertaining – content.

Again, expand the way you view your brand by going beyond it. If you’re a clothing brand, do funny skits that include the kinds of people and scenarios you envision your clothes in. Viewers will be entertained by the comedy and enticed to see more. Mention your brand in the caption and include a link to your storefront on your profile.

Diversify Who’s Creating Your Content

Let Your Audience Create for You, for Free

As we mentioned above, one of the benefits of a branded hashtag challenge is that each viewer markets your brand to their followers when they participate in your challenge.

Another way to generate leads with this kind of organic engagement is to simply ask for it. Encourage your existing customers to post about your products and tag you or use branded hashtags. Lift them up as they lift you up: show people who come to your page that real people enjoy your products while customers show their followers what your brand has to offer.

Don’t Forget About Influencer Marketing

If you want more control over who and how your products are marketed, you can use influencer marketing.

Leverage Existing Partnerships

If you’re already working with YouTubers and Instagram influencers, see if they have a notable audience on TikTok and negotiate a TikTok marketing strategy with them. This is a great way to get your foot in the door.

Engage with TikTok Creators

As you familiarize yourself with TikTok, get to know who the top TikTok creators are in your niche. Search brands similar to yours or hashtags that relate to the kinds of topics you cover in your content. See who already has brand deals and how they present products to their audiences and find your TikTok community.

Generate Leads with TikTok

Expanding your TikTok audience – and your overall brand awareness – creates more opportunities to drive sales. With TikTok, there are a variety of ways for you and others to work together to get your brand out into the world.

Keep these simple strategies in mind as you and your marketing team develop content for your social media campaigns. Content that reaches and engages is the kind of content that goes viral and gets more eyes on your page and on your products.

Remember, create authentic content that builds trust with your audience so they can feel confident when they take the leap from viewer to consumer.

Sway Group is a full-service influencer marketing agency. Whether you’re looking to build brand awareness, increase sales, or find the right influencer to represent your products, we can help! Connect with us today and let’s level-up your business together.