A whopping 70% of the U.S. uses social media. Needless to say, if your marketing strategy doesn’t include some kind of social media marketing, you’re missing out. And nowadays, new social media platforms are popping up left and right. The latest platform that’s all the rage? TikTok. Learn all about using TikTok for business, including its perks and how to get started.

Benefits of using TikTok for business

So, what exactly is TikTok for business? And, how can businesses use TikTok? TikTok is a video-sharing social media platform that businesses and individuals can use to share short videos. Businesses can use TikTok to market their business, promote their offerings, learn more about their target market, and expand their brand.

Is TikTok good for business? Video marketing is chock-full of perks for small businesses. In fact, roughly 85% of businesses now use some type of video marketing tool to promote their company. And, there are roughly 66 million TikTok users in the United States alone. With TikTok, you can:

  • Expand your reach (hello, Gen-Z)
  • Reach your audience more quickly
  • Create ads on a budget
  • Increase brand awareness
  • Let your creative juices flow

Along with the above benefits, businesses tend to see high engagement rates on TikTok. And if you know which techniques to use and find your niche, it can be somewhat “easy” to go viral. 

On the perks of TikTok and business, Sam Shepler, CEO of TestimonialHero, said:

TikTok offers considerable advantages to businesses in many aspects. The most important ones are the vast audience base it allows companies to target (millions of people from all ages, races, etc.) and its unique user engagement characteristics. TikTok’s algorithm is definitely something else compared to other social media; TikTok content requires much less effort to create high engagement rates. The best example of this is how a new account, even with no followers, can have a video that goes viral, which is almost impossible to happen on other platforms, like Instagram.

Apart from all the benefits when it comes to reaching new people, TikTok also allows brands to take more creative liberties they had not dared to take before. Even if you own a serious business, TikTok could be the perfect ally to show a more human, appealing, and even funny side that people can relate to.

The downside of TikTok? Trends come and go, which means TikTok likely won’t be around forever and may slowly lose traction in the next year or two. But, that doesn’t mean it should necessarily stop you from giving the app a go for your business. 

Before you decide to start using TikTok for marketing your business, consider the pros and cons and if it’s worth it to start using an additional social media platform. Do your research to see if it would be worth it for your company to give the popular platform a shot. If you decide to give TikTok a whirl, you need to learn…

How to use TikTok for business

Just like with anything, it takes time to learn the ins and outs of TikTok for your business. But with a little research and trial and error, you’ll get the hang of it in no time. Let’s break down how to use TikTok to promote your business. 

using tiktok for business

1. Get to know the platform

First things first, before you can begin using TikTok for your company, you need to download and understand how to use the application on your smartphone or tablet. Otherwise, you could wind up using the wrong hashtags, targeting the wrong people, etc., etc. 

Once you download the app and set up your profile (add photo, bio, and website URL), be sure to go to your settings to turn on TikTok Pro. This switches you to a business account and lets you view analytics.

After you’re all set up, you can start familiarizing yourself with the platform. Look at things like:

  • The “For You” page: This shows users content based on their interests and interactions.
  • The “Discover” tab: The tab gives you a breakdown of different trends, such as hashtags and sounds. 
  • How to post and edit a video: You can do this by hitting the “+” button in the app. 
  • Notifications: Shows you likes, comments, and mentions from users.

To understand the platform and get a feel for how it all works, consider exploring different topics and seeing what’s trending. Create some practice videos (don’t worry, you can delete them or save videos as a draft) to test out how to shoot and edit your video content. 

2. Determine how frequently you will post

Just like with any other type of social media account, there are peak times to post on TikTok. Posting times can vary depending on your target audience, where you’re located, and more. Generally, these are the best times to post on TikTok for businesses:

  • Monday: 6 AM, 10 AM, 10 PM
  • Tuesday: 2 AM, 4 AM, 9 AM
  • Wednesday: 7 AM, 8 AM, 11 PM
  • Thursday: 9 AM, 12 AM, 7 PM
  • Friday: 5 AM, 1 PM, 3 PM
  • Saturday: 11 AM, 7 PM, 8 PM
  • Sunday: 7 AM, 8 AM, 4 PM

Keep in mind that the above times are not guaranteed. You may find that other times work better for promoting your products or services. 

As for posting frequency, the general rule of thumb for TikTok is to post at least once per day. That way, you can get in front of your audience and show that you post consistently. Ideally, you should post between one to three times per day to help grow your TikTok presence. 

If you post a few times a day, be sure you don’t go overboard with it. You don’t want to push out content just to push out content. And, you surely don’t want to scare off any users. Make sure your videos are relatable, engaging, and what your audience wants to see. 

3. Experiment with different types of content

When it comes to TikTok, you need to find your niche. And to do this, you can experiment with different types of content. 

What kind of content can you play around with? You can:

  • Post a video introducing yourself and your business
  • Share customer testimonials
  • Give users a step-by-step video of your product or service
  • Provide tips to other small business owners
  • Give followers a tour of your business
  • Create a challenge for followers and users to try out 

When it comes to content, you never know what’s going to work. So, don’t be shy when it comes to experimenting with your videos. 

Also, look at your competitors to see what kind of content does and doesn’t work for them. Of course, you don’t want to copy their content. But, it will give you a good idea on what kind of content to produce on your platform. 

4. Follow current trends

To give your posts a boost and increase your chances of your video going viral on TikTok, pay attention to the latest trends. 

With TikTok, trends with sounds and hashtags come and go very quickly. So when you see a new trend gaining traction, jump on it fast. Under the Discover tab and on your For You page, look for trends with sounds, hashtags, and topics. 

When you find a trend that you think may work with your business (make sure to keep it professional), go to work to craft your content and post it ASAP. That way, your video has more of a chance to get on other users’ For You pages so it can be seen. 

5. Launch a hashtag challenge

A big part of TikTok marketing is hashtags (aka #). You may be familiar with them if you’ve been using Twitter for your business. Because hashtags are so huge on TikTok, you can use them to help build your business page’s following and be seen on the app.

To help promote your business on TikTok, consider launching a hashtag challenge. This is where you create your own hashtag and try to get it to trend. Doing a hashtag challenge encourages your followers and other users to create a video and add your branded hashtag to it.

For example, if you’re a baker, you may decide to use the hashtag #ChristmasCookieCountdown to engage with users during the holiday season and encourage them to share their own cookie baking videos. 

A hashtag not only promotes your business in a fun way, but can also help drive up engagement and interactions on your page. 

6. Work with influencers, if possible

Social media influencers are very trendy in this day and age. A social media influencer is a person on social media who has built a reputation for their knowledge or expertise on a specific topic (e.g., dance, cooking, storytelling, etc.). Another way to promote your business on TikTok is to work directly with a social media influencer to promote your offerings in a subtle way.

Costs for working with an influencer can vary, depending on what type of following the influencer has. You don’t by any means have to team up with a celebrity. But, you can work with smaller influencers who relate to your industry to get the word out about your business. 

To see results with influencer marketing, make sure the influencer’s audience matches yours. You don’t want to hire an influencer that specializes in cars when your business is a bakery. Do your research with online tools and analytics to pinpoint the perfect person for your campaign. 

7. Utilize TikTok advertising

To promote your business on TikTok, you can also take advantage of TikTok advertising. With TikTok’s currently advertising options, you can choose from:

  • In-feed Native Content: Similar to Snapchat or Instagram story ads. Users can click through to a URL landing page, app download, or your TikTok page.
  • Top-view: Capture user attention by appearing at the top of your target audience’s ‘For You Page’ when they first open the app.
  • Brand Takeovers: This ad type lets brands take over TikTok for the day. They can create images, GIFs, and videos with embedded links to landing pages or hashtag challenges. With this option, users are not able to like or comment on the ad. 
  • Hashtag Challenge: Instead of trying to make a hashtag challenge go viral on your own (think back to #5 on our list), you can use promoted hashtags to get more engagement from users. 
  • Branded Effects: Shareable branded stickers, filters, and effects that users can utilize in their own video content.

Do your research before narrowing down which type of small business TikTok advertising route to go. Determine what the goal of your ad is and go from there. If you’re unsure which route to take, consider testing out different advertising methods to see which works best for your small business.