TikTok is one of the fastest growing social platforms in the world. The video-based app had 689 million monthly active users worldwide as of January 2021. Clearly a hub for retailers to find, connect, and engage with consumers. The app draws a younger crowd – 62% of people on the social media platform are between the ages of 10 and 29.
Many users showcase products by creating “TikTok made me buy it” videos, a concept Matt Cleary enjoys and views as “contextualizing the impact [a product] has on somebody’s life.” Cleary is TikTok’s vertical director for retail and restaurants, helping brands find ways to get involved with the app.
“TikTok has a data reach that is unheard of in the US, and as such, is able to feed its algorithm based on a myriad of behaviors that help you both focus your ideal client as well as reach them where they are comfortable and excited to be given information,” says Katharine McKee, Founder of Morphology Consulting, a digital commerce consultancy.
“Due to the mix of earworms as well as perfectly tailored content, viewers are already relaxed and ready to be marketed to. They enjoy it and are pleased to receive it because they are already in a world that is tailored to them. For brands, it can be incredibly difficult to nail down who your real, high life-time-value (LTV) customer is, and efforts to find them are often what drive up customer acquisition costs. A tool like TikTok, that is able to source disparate information and build a persona for you, is invaluable. Both in terms of time saved and value created,” she adds.
User-Generated Content Is Trustworthy
User-generated content (UGC) typically has much more of an impact than branded content for many reasons. First, consumers trust UGC because it is authentic and therefore more trustworthy, not carefully crafted by a large corporation or a marketing team. Secondly, the content acts as tutorials for potential consumers. 75% of marketers know that adding UGC makes brand content more authentic.
And 93% of marketers think that consumers trust content created by fellow customers more than content created by brands. When done right, it can increase brand awareness, favorability, and in turn, sales.
“As e-commerce entrepreneurs, we know our industries and products inside and out, but we often forget that our customers don’t. I’ve found that honest videos that either dispel myths and misconceptions or explain complicated industry jargon in simpler terms get 10x the views and encourage followers to engage with my brand directly,” says Ada Chen, Founder and CEO of Chuan Skincare, an affordable, handcrafted natural skincare line.
Brands Have An Opportunity To Learn From Customers
If brands pay close attention to what consumers say on TikTok, they can gain valuable insights on product assortment, content creation, marketing strategies, and much more.
A study that observed behaviors of TikTok users over the span of one month revealed that 68% of TikTok users watch someone else’s video and 55% upload their own videos. Whether brands pay attention to what consumers are posting to glean insights, post their own branded content, or work with influencers and customers to post their products and videos on the app – it’s a win-win scenario to tap into such a large and engaged audience. 90% of TikTok users are on the app on a daily basis and TikTokers spend an average of 52 minutes per day on the app.
With 66% of customers saying transparency is one of a brand’s most attractive qualities, it’s no wonder platforms like TikTok have taken off the way they have. They simply deliver what consumers want to consume – information that is transparent, genuine, and trustworthy.