Social media platforms

TikTok for business


TikTok is a video content sharing platform with around 1 billion monthly active users. It features simple-to-use video editing tools that allow users to create video content. TikTok has a younger user base than many other social media platforms - the majority of its users are part of ‘Generation Z’ (born between 1997-2012).  If this is your target audience, you should consider TikTok as part of your social media strategy.

Compared with other social media platforms, it is possible to achieve significant organic reach without using paid promotion. There are fewer opportunities for driving sales on TikTok, however the platform has recently launched an e-commerce feature.

TikTok works best to achieve brand-awareness objectives and build an audience. There is a focus on light-hearted, entertaining content. Sales-driven content may not be as successful. A strong TikTok following can spill over onto your other social media channels, such as Instagram, which offer more sales opportunities.

See your marketing objectives.

The TikTok algorithm

Success on TikTok relies on boosting your organic reach through the algorithm. Most users on TikTok view content from accounts they don’t follow on the ‘For You Page’. This feature presents users with content that the TikTok algorithm has determined they will be interested in.

The TikTok algorithm will show your content to more users based on a number of factors, including:

  • Watch time - how long users are spending watching your content
  • Completion rate - whether users watch your video until the end
  • Whether there is an audience for your content
  • Trends - content using trending themes is more likely to be shown

Creating a TikTok account

To create a TikTok account for your business, download the TikTok app onto a mobile device. You will need to use an email address and create a username and password. Try to use your business name for your username. When setting up your account, ensure you select a business account rather than a personal one, as this will allow you to use the platform's analytics features. Chose a profile image – your business logo is ideal. Create a short bio about your business and include a link to your website.

Creating content on TikTok

Consider the following when creating video content on TikTok:

  • You can select 15-second, 30-second or 3-minute lengths. Videos that users watch to the end perform better so try to keep it short.
  • You can create a video from a single clip (eg a ‘selfie’ style video of someone speaking to the camera) or a video of multiple clips edited together (eg ‘montage’ or ‘transition’ style videos).
  • You can film in-app or by using your device’s camera. Content filmed and edited in-app may be treated more favourably by the algorithm. However, you might find it easier to capture better quality video clips with your device’s camera.
  • Film vertically rather than landscape so your video fills the screen.
  • Good lighting is important.
  • Add sounds to video – this is an important part of TikTok content. You can select music and ‘trending sounds’. You can add your own voiceover or use the text-to-speech feature to generate a voiceover.
  • Write a caption with keywords relevant to your business and include hashtags to help your content appear to more users.

Your business could try working with a content creator or influencer on TikTok. A content creator would develop content for your brand to share on your account. This could help build your own TikTok audience. Alternatively, you could pay for influencers to talk about your product or brand on their account. This is a good way to reach a new audience. See influencer marketing.

TikTok trends

Getting involved in TikTok trends is a key way to reach a bigger audience and drive engagement. Trends change all the time and can take the form of:

  • sounds
  • dances
  • challenges
  • songs
  • features

You can identify current trends by spending some time using TikTok.