How B2B brands use TikTok

Leverage new social media platforms to drive engagement.

By Kyle Tang, Marketing & Culture Specialist

A person holding a smartphone that displays the TikTok logo.

In our social media landscape, brands are always looking for ways to reach audiences, boost engagement, and gather leads. With apps constantly emerging and fizzling out, it can be challenging to identify which are worth the investment.

The rise of TikTok

You might have noticed a sudden influx of trending video content with people dancing to their favorite song, sharing a personal experience, or reviewing a new product. Most social media apps have this capability, but not all have been successful in keeping this as their focus.

TikTok is a platform where content creators can record, edit, and share their video creations with friends and followers in an interactive way. It is currently one of the fastest-growing social media networks with more than 3.5 billion all-time downloads and 1 billion monthly active users. These numbers are only increasing making it a threat to popular applications like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Unlike these copy-reliant platforms, TikTok uniquely targets customers with millions of short, engaging videos enriched with trending musical overlays, sound effects, and visual filters.

With short video content being one of the hottest trends this year, marketers can utilize this opportunity to connect with their audience in new ways:

  • Transform your brand messages into ones that resonate with a larger audience by collaborating with an influencer.

  • Make your own content, unlike you have before. Find a TikTok trend (Such as get ready with me, challenges, or tutorials) and make it your own.

  • Create targeted ads, branded hashtags, or your own video effects using TikTok for Business. This can be a start to your new marketing campaign.

Is TikTok right for your brand?

A common misconception many marketers have is that only B2C brands have buying power on TikTok. Although it may be dominated by individual consumers, B2B companies can also reach their audiences and gather quality leads. In the U.S., most active users on TikTok fall between the ages of 10 to 29 years old (47.4%). While this is a young demographic, this range has only been shifting. The number of American adults using TikTok grew 5.5 times in the past two years. With 73% of millennials (ages 26–41) holding B2B purchasing decisions, it is the perfect time for brands to start their strategy and build their foundation as TikTok becomes enriched with potential clients.  

Check out some B2B brands that are thriving on TikTok right now:

  • Adobe is investing their time into learning the unique features and functionalities of their partner, TikTok. This has helped them stay timely with popular trends to engage and connect with audiences.

@adobe Gorgeous gorgeous girls make custom wrapping paper ✨ #CreativeCloudExpress #AdobeTok #Tutorial #giftwrapping ♬ original sound - Adobe
  • Shopify is making their personality shine by leveraging influencers, content trends, and partnership videos on TikTok.

@shopify Reply to @campfoodie things that'll change your life, part 3 #productivity #smallbusiness ♬ Pieces (Solo Piano Version) - Danilo Stankovic
  • By organizing a user-generated content campaign and promoting the #BossIt2021 branded hashtag, Sage earned a stellar 27.7 million views on their first TikTok video.

How to engage people on TikTok

Now that we have briefly covered the platform’s functionalities and users, it’s time to dive into what makes TikTok’s video content special—human connection.

TikTok is currently ranked the most engaging application as users spend an average of 10.85 minutes during each of their sessions. Not only does it effectively maintain attention, but it keeps 90% of those users coming back daily. Why is this? Developers have implemented an algorithm that personalizes what videos users see based on their previous activity. The more you watch, the smarter the AI gets, resulting in an endless black hole of addictive and relatable videos that appeal to that viewer’s emotions. This is formally called the “For You” page.

Research from LinkedIn’s B2B Institute has proven that taking an emotional approach is more effective than taking a more rational or more traditional one. Not only do viewers feel more connected to brands through emotional marketing and campaigns, but this strategy drives more sales and leads, making a greater business impact.

TikTok videos made simple

With a low production cost, it's easy to get started on TikTok. All you need is a mobile device! From there, it's just a matter of finding the right trends in your industry and recording the video using the app's editing features. Since videos can be filmed anywhere, you can start producing in minutes. Just think of all the great ways you can use TikTok to reach your audience:

  • Show off your culture and fun side with videos of employees doing their thing.

  • Promote new products or services with short clips showing how easy they are to use.

  • Share recruiting advice so potential candidates can rock their next interview.

TikTok strategy

Before starting any social media platform, you need a plan. Specifically, a strategy that will allow you to experiment and grow. Consider these 10 fundamentals before making your TikTok content:

  1. Establish your goals (Building brand awareness, driving traffic, or appealing to new audiences).

  2. Define your target audience.

  3. Map out your buyers’ journey.

  4. Determine your key metrics to track (Such as followers, shares, and views).

  5. Create a content calendar.

  6. Remain consistent with the quality and timing of your posts.

  7. Research common trends, top hashtags, and the right keywords for search engine optimization (SEO).

  8. Partner with influencers who share common values.

  9. Focus on crafting authentic content, so viewers can resonate with your brand.

  10. Measure your results, analyze performance, and adjust accordingly.

So how will you use TikTok? The options are limitless. Let’s connect about your social media strategy today!

strategy, brand

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