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Posted: 2020-10-31 21:40:11

TikTok is a sleeping e-commerce giant

How TikTok works from a marketing perspective

From Adam Epstein at Quartz
Originally published 2020 10 31
What businesses are succeeding on TikTok?Ou said direct-to-consumer brands selling products under $200 are doing really well on the platform. On the flip side, companies that sell luxury items—or products with long sell cycles, like furniture, which require re-targeting custom audiences several times over—have struggled. Products under $200 are seeing better conversion rates on TikTok than even Facebook or Instagram, proving the app’s young user base is willing and able to buy thingsGoldman pointed to Elf Cosmetics as one brand that’s done well both with paid video ads and also campaigns that have flourished organically. The company’s “Eyes Lips Face” challenge when viral last year: Videos with the #eyeslipsface hashtag were viewer more than 1.2 billion times.Perhaps not surprisingly, apps are also advertising well on TikTok. “It’s an easy ask of the consumer,” Goldman said. “You clearly have a phone and like apps, here’s another one for you, just click to install.”One such app is Grammarly, a writing assistant that worked with Nativex on its TikTok campaigns. At first, it made a highly polished, studio-produced video ad, but that didn’t perform well, Ou said. So it then turned to TikTok’s creators, hiring an influencer to market the app to her hundreds of thousands of followers.
Companies open a TikTok ads account, set up a campaign, and are given a recommended daily budget based on their audience targets. Unlike Facebook, those campaigns need to appear “authentic,” Ou said, using either creative that looks like regular TikTok videos or ads that bring in influencers to market the brand. TikTok features a “Creator Marketplace” in which brands are matched with popular influencers to collaborate on advertisements.TikTok includes several types of ad types and formats for brands to choose from:In-feed videos: Normal video ads that appear in users’ feeds as they scroll through the appBrand takeovers: Landing page ads that appear and take over the full screen as soon as users open the app. TikTok makes sure users only see no more than one of these per day.Branded AR (augmented reality): TikTok allows brands to create their own custom filters, lenses, and stickers for users to use in their videosTopView ads: Full-screen ads that appear as the first thing users see in their feeds (after they’ve opened the app and potentially viewed a brand takeover)Branded hashtag challenges: Brands sponsor a hashtag that encourages users to add to their videosSponsored content: Ads can get influencers to make a sponsored video on their own feeds for their followers to see
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