The Do’s and Don’ts of TikTok for Brands

TikTok’s user base has expanded rapidly over the past few years, and along with that growth, has fostered a platform that allows businesses to market themselves in an accessible, affordable, and relatable way. Through TikTok marketing, businesses can easily connect with their user-base and generate engagement with their brand.  That means if you’re not on TikTok already,  it’s time for your business to get in on it too. No matter if your company has yet to start TikTok marketing or is still developing its audience, there are a few do’s and don’ts to navigating TikTok content creation.

The Do’s

Do Analyze and Follow Trends

TikTok’s platform runs on trends: Trends that are good for engagement. For many users, the content they watch is more relevant to them if it follows current sounds, filters, hashtags, or formats. When businesses choose to hop on these trends, it both switches up your content and makes it easier for new users to find your account. This is because they are able to look through sounds or hashtags from trends to search for similar content. If the content from your business looks interesting on those pages, then it’s a good way for users to find your videos organically, so be creative and be authentic! 

Sometimes, it’s harder to follow music-based trends, as some sounds aren’t approved for commercial use on your business account. This means that it might be more convenient to follow trends that are based around certain topics or sounds created by TikTok users.

Do Develop a Niche

The other main way that users find content is through the algorithm. TikTok’s algorithm is notorious for finding content very specifically tailored to someone’s interests. This means that, even more than on other platforms, it is important to find a community relevant to your business so that it is easier for the algorithm to recommend your videos to others. To appeal to this niche, there are various tactics that you can use, including talking about relevant topics in that niche, creating educational content, or responding to other creators. This also allows for your audience to learn more about what you sell as well as providing value outside of advertising.

Do Encourage User-Generated Content (UGC)

Part of building up a brand on TikTok is being authentic, or rather, generating authentic interest in your company. A large part of making the value of your brand seem genuine is by encouraging User-Generated Content (UGC), or content by other creators about your brand. A good way of doing this is creating a hashtag for your brand, or a challenge associated with your brand. That way, people will be more excited to create content about your brand and increase traffic for your account. Additionally, if your business has a physical location, you could encourage patrons to post reviews about your business to TikTok through flyers in the store.

The Don’ts

Don’t Violate The Rules

This one is pretty straightforward: as with other social media platforms, TikTok has rules and regulations that creators have to follow. Make sure that you read through these guidelines, as they can be rather strict on their policies for what can be shown on screen. Violating these rules can result in suspension or even your account being deleted; if this happens, you’ll essentially have to start from scratch. While this applies to any TikTok content creator, this advice is particularly relevant for businesses, as you’ll probably want to err on the side of caution. Showing any sensitive materials can lead to a bad reputation for your brand, and cause it to be regarded negatively within its community on TikTok.

Don’t Act Too Sales-Forward

Part of being a business on TikTok is blending in. While this seems like counterintuitive advice, we mean more so in the sense that you don’t want to stick out from normal content as a brand. The knowledge that you are being explicitly advertised to is a turn-off for much of TikTok’s user base, comprised largely of millennials and Gen Z. Therefore, your brand has to be relatable enough that, to a certain degree, people would be willing to watch the content in and of itself. As we mentioned before, this means that your brand should focus more on engaging the community that it is in, showing the “making-of” of your product or service, or otherwise creating uniquely interesting content. In this way, your followers and users will be more interested in what you are offering.

Don’t Ignore Your Comments

TikTok is a platform that has engaged users who love to comment and provide input. Their comments should mean a lot to you, since they are the ones boosting your engagement. The more engagement in your content the more the algorithm will push it forward, and you get more comments by interacting with your commenters. In the early stages, it is important to respond to as many comments as possible, so that those users will be more encouraged to come back and interact again. Even bad comments about your business should be responded to, demonstrating that you are confident in the integrity and value of your brand. Not only that, but you can get more content out of comments: there is a feature on TikTok that allows you to respond directly to comments in a TikTok that is linked under the comment, allowing users to stay on your page for longer. 

If you’re hoping to grow your business and your audience through TikTok, it’s an amazing platform that just keeps growing. Hopefully, these tricks and tips will help you to understand the foundations that TikTok works on and how to cater to them. In the end, just remember to be consistent and patient–while it’ll take some time, it will start to pay off.

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