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Everything You Need To Know About TikTok Influencer Marketing

everything-you-need-to-know-about-tiktok-influencer-marketing

TikTok isn’t the new kid on the block anymore. The platform has exploded in popularity over the last few years and has become “the place to be” on social media—especially for younger audiences. 

In this blog, we’ll lay out everything you need to know to get your TikTok influencer marketing strategy off the ground. We’ll also give you some tips and best practices for staying a step ahead of the competition.

TikTok isn’t the new kid on the block anymore. The platform has exploded in popularity over the last few years and has become “the place to be” on social media—especially for younger audiences. 

In this blog, we’ll lay out everything you need to know to get your TikTok influencer marketing strategy off the ground. We’ll also give you some tips and best practices for staying a step ahead of the competition. 

TikTok stats and influence on the social media landscape

First things first: Let’s get into some stats about TikTok as a whole. This will help you better understand how far it’s come over the last few years and why it has become an essential influencer marketing strategy. 

TikTok is approaching 2 billion users. 

As of April 2023, TikTok has roughly 1.9 billion users worldwide—a 66% increase since 2020. By 2027, experts predict that number to grow to more than 2.2 billion.

TikTok dominates the share of time spent on social media. 

Users in the United States dedicated 32% of their social media time to TikTok.

Here’s the full breakdown:

  • TikTok: 32%
  • Facebook: 20%
  • Instagram: 20%
  • YouTube: 15%
  • Snapchat: 9%
  • Twitter: 2% 

TikTok is a product review destination.

About 68% of people on TikTok use the platform to look up reviews about a product or brand. Trends like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt further illustrate the power TikTok content has on purchase decisions. 

Most users leverage TikTok as a discovery platform.

More than half of TikTok’s users rely on the platform to help discover new products and brands. TikTok’s search algorithm takes into account various factors to provide relevant search results. It considers users’ past interactions, preferences, and engagement patterns to deliver personalized content recommendations.

Understanding TikTok’s audience and platform

Want to create content that resonates with TikTok’s user base? Let’s get into who they are and what TikTok functions they’re using to create top content. 

Demographic breakdown of TikTok users

TikTok still caters to a younger audience, with nearly 40% of its users under 25 years old: 

  • 18-24: 38.4%
  • 25-34: 32.5%
  • 35-44: 15.6%
  • 45-54: 8%
  • 55+: 5.5%

The platform also skews slightly female:

An overview of TikTok features and functionalities

Uploading and recording videos

Users can share video content up to 10 minutes long. This can be done directly within the app or by uploading the content from your camera roll. 

Editing content 

TikTok has tons of options for users who want to make their content more interesting and engaging. Some basic ways to edit TikTok content include cropping, rotating videos, creating auto-captions, changing the playback speed, adding transitions, and more. 

Filters and effects

TikTok has plenty of filters users can choose from to enhance and personalize their content. Some examples include:

  • AR filters: TikTok offers augmented reality (AR) filters you can use to transform your appearance, add animated effects, or create visual experiences.
  • Green screen effects: TikTok’s green screen effect allows you to replace the background of your videos with any image or video of your choice. 
  • Time warp scan: This effect allows you to create illusions, showcase transformations, or create comedic timing in your videos.
  • Beauty filters: TikTok provides various filters that can smooth your skin, enhance your features, add makeup effects, and more.
  • Trending filters and effects: TikTok often introduces new filters and effects that become popular due to viral trends or challenges. 

Sounds

Sounds play a crucial role in setting the mood, tone, and style of TikTok videos. These “sounds” refer to audio clips—typically snippets of music—dialogue, or other sounds that users can incorporate into their videos.

Voiceover

Many users create a voiceover to help explain the context of their video. This feature is great for creators who excel at storytelling or adding some humor to their content. 

Live streaming

Live streaming allows you to engage with your audience in real time. Viewers can comment, ask questions, and interact with you through live chat. It provides an opportunity for direct communication and fosters a more personal and interactive relationship with your followers.

Stitches

@gabiiigarrr #stitch with @danielclarke_dc3 ♬ original sound – gabigarrr

TikTok Stitches is a feature that allows users to incorporate and respond to specific segments of other TikTok videos within their own content. It provides an engaging way to interact with existing TikTok content, contributes to ongoing conversations, and enables you to add your own touch to videos from other creators.

Duets

@myreek_ #duet with @Naomi Turner #singing #sing #singers #singer #fyp #foryou #vocals #acapella #harmony ♬ original sound – M Y R E E K

TikTok Duets allow you to create original content as a split-screen view alongside existing content. This feature encourages collaboration on the platform and improves discoverability and sharing within the TikTok community. 

Carousels

Much like the popular IG feature, TikTok allows users to create Carousel content in their feed. You can add background music and captions to these static image slideshows to improve engagement and optimize the content.  

Key content trends ripe for TikTok influencer marketing

Dance challenges

@mianmya1 Dancing always feels good! Outfits are #nikeneeeditnow from @jdsportsus #dance #dancechallenge #foryoupage ♬ It Feel Good to Be Me – Blackway

TikTok dance challenges are viral trends where users learn and perform choreographed dance routines to popular songs or original tracks. They typically involve a specific set of dance moves replicated and shared by users across the platform. 

If done authentically, brands can get in on the action and leverage the trend’s popularity and engagement. They can create their own branded dance challenges, partnering with influencers or popular TikTok creators to promote their products or services through the challenge. Or they can sponsor existing dance challenges, supporting creators already leading popular trends. 

ASRM

@asmrbellabree Have you ever tried these fun beauty hacks with Vaseline?  @vaselinebrand #Vaseline #Vaselinepartner #ad ♬ original sound – ASMRBellaBree

The ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) trend on TikTok involves creating videos that stimulate pleasant sensations through soothing sounds, gentle whispers, or relaxing visuals. ASMR content aims to provide viewers with a sense of calm and relaxation.

If you want to get involved as a brand, it’s important to understand the ASMR community and the aesthetics associated with ASMR content. Maintaining authenticity, providing a genuine experience, and respecting the soothing nature of ASMR is crucial to resonate with viewers and the ASMR community on TikTok.

Get ready with me

@wittyybabyla #grwm #foryoupage #getreadywithme #grwmhair #grwmmakeup #makeup #makeuphacks ♬ original sound – Daisy

“Get ready with me” content involves creators inviting their audience to, well, get ready with them. This can be anything from getting ready for work to a night on the town or anything in between. It’s great content for brands—especially beauty and fashion—to showcase how their products can be involved in a daily routine. 

Day in the life

@themayagraves A day in the life ☁️. If you’re in ATL and need a lash tech make sure to hit up @theangeldenise and use my code “MAYAMOL” for $20 off your appointment! #momsoftiktok #motherhood #adayinmylife #parentsoftiktok #babiesoftiktok #atllashtech #atllashes ♬ original sound – Maya Graves

“Day in the life” content is basically an extended version of “get ready with me” content, offering a behind-the-scenes look at a typical day. There is no limit to what a TikTok creator might get up to in a given day, which means there is no limit to the type of brands that can integrate their products or services into the content. 

Unboxing/haul content

@lindseyxworth Replying to @mallie they in fact were almost all wins? #thrifthaul #thrifting #thrifttok #tryonhaul #realistictryonhaul #tryon #goodwill ♬ original sound – Lindsey Wedgeworth

Unboxing content is when a creator opens a package from a brand in real-time. It’s a great way to capture the creator’s genuine reaction to a new product and showcase packaging styles, materials, and more. 

Similarly, haul content involves a creator showing off recent purchases from a shopping spree. Haul content is especially popular in the thrifting community as it allows them to share all the hidden gems they found on a day out. 

Pack an order with me

@shopbypinkprincess Let’s pack an order! #smallbiz #smallbusiness #asmrpackingorder #asmr #packorderwithme #fyp #foryourpage ♬ original sound – shoppinkprincess

“Pack an order with me” content is basically the reverse of unboxing content. Many small businesses will leverage this technique to showcase their products and add a personal touch to the online shopping experience. 

Tips and best practices for successful TikTok influencer marketing campaigns

Now that you have an idea of who is on TikTok and the type of content you can leverage on the platform, let’s get your strategy up and running. 

Create a TikTok Business account.

As a brand on TikTok, the first thing you’ll need to do is create a TikTok Business Account. These public profiles allow you to leverage native marketing tools to build a cohesive strategy on the platform. 

A few things you can access with a Business Account: 

  • The Web Business Suite—a central location to access your analytics, workspace, and activity and support
  • An email address on your TikTok profile where potential customers and creators can contact you
  • Exclusive access to pre-cleared sounds through the Commercial Music Library
  • The in-app Business Creative Hub, where you can get tips on content strategy, shooting videos, and more

Find TikTok influencers that align with your mission and values.

Finding creators that align with your brand’s mission and values is essential to your TikTok influencer marketing strategy.

First and foremost, brand alignment ensures authenticity. You create a genuine connection with your target audience by partnering with influencers who share your mission and values. Their endorsement reflects your brand’s principles, strengthening trust and credibility in the eyes of the viewers.

Moreover, aligning with the right influencers enhances relevance. Their content resonates with a specific niche, attracting an engaged audience that aligns with your target market. This synergy creates a natural flow, increasing the likelihood of conversions and driving tangible results for your business.

Last but certainly not least, alignment increases your potential for content amplification. When influencers genuinely align with your brand, they become passionate advocates, spreading your message far and wide. Their authentic endorsement carries weight and inspires their followers to take action, expanding your brand’s reach and impact.

Collaborate with diverse creator types.

Don’t pigeonhole yourself into working with one type of creator. In doing so, you limit your audience to one specific type of consumer and ignore the potential for branching out into other industries. 

For example, a logical partner for a fitness apparel brand might be an athlete who showcases how the brand’s products improve performance. However, that brand might also partner with a travel influencer who demonstrates how they stay active on the road or a “momfluencer” who promotes healthy and active parenting activities.  

Encourage user-generated content (UGC).

UGC serves as social proof for your brand, demonstrating that real people are enjoying and benefiting from your products or services. It leverages the influence and impact of word-of-mouth marketing, as users trust the recommendations and experiences of their peers. Be sure to brush up on trending hashtags and challenges to encourage users to create organic content around your brand. 

Take advantage of Spark Ads.

Spark Ads allow brands to turn organic creator content into TikTok ads that blend seamlessly into users’ feeds. Also known as creator licensing or influencer whitelisting, Spark Ads offer an engaging way to combine the power of organic creator content with paid media. 

  • Partnering with creators boosts ad view-through rates by 193%.
  • Ads featuring creators have 83% high engagement rates. 
  • Creator content improves ad recall by 27%.

Pay attention to algorithm changes.

The TikTok algorithm is constantly changing and evolving. It’s designed to analyze user preferences, behaviors, and interactions to provide a personalized and engaging content experience. Several factors that can influence the algorithm include: 

  • User interactions
  • Video completion rate
  • Relevancy
  • Video details
  • Time of posting
  • User feedback

 Familiarize yourself with relevant rules and regulations. 

TikTok has regulations and guidelines for disclosing branded content, ensuring transparency and disclosure to users on the platform. 

When posting branded content to TikTok, you must:

  • Enable the branded content toggle.
  • Ensure promoted product or service is clear without requiring users to access your profile page or any third-party links. 
  • Avoid promoting products or services in prohibited industries.

According to TikTok, prohibited industries include:

  • Alcohol 
  • Cigarettes and tobacco products
  • Drug-related products and services
  • Weapons
  • Gambling
  • Sexual products and services
  • Political content 
  • Animals (this includes buying and selling animals. Pet supplies and services are fine)
  • Pharmaceuticals, healthcare, and medicine products 
  • Contraceptive products
  • Age-rated films, TV shows, and games

Learn more about TikTok’s branded content guidelines here

Using TikTok influencer content in your cross-platform social media strategy

Many creators have found that TikTok videos do well on other platforms and vice versa. The key is to do more than copy/paste a video. Each social media channel has its own set of strengths and weaknesses, and by tailoring your TikTok content to the right channels the right way, you can expand your reach and get more “bang for your buck.”

Instagram

Most TikTok videos work well as IG Reels or Stories. Don’t be afraid to include AR filters and stickers, as well as craft compelling captions to drive engagement.

Facebook

Facebook allows you to upload videos across multiple dimensions. Because Facebook’s audience is notably older than TikTok’s, make sure you’re using your TikTok videos for maximum effect, including page links, strong copy, and/or targeting relevant groups.

YouTube

With the release of YouTube Shorts, many creators are uploading their TikToks directly to YouTube. Shorts have come on strong since its release in 2021 and offer plenty of unique insights about your audience on YouTube. 

Pinterest

While Pinterest usually caters to images, vertically-formatted videos are also performing well and are pinnable for fans. Similar to Shorts and Reels, TikTok video dimensions are just right for Pinterest video uploads.

Successful TikTok influencer marketing examples

Public

@kallmekris Get started with Public using the l!nk in my b!o and get up to $50 in free stock???#ad ♬ Coffee Music – Cafe Music BGM channel

Kallmekris is an actor on TikTok and shoots hilarious skits using several original characters. Public, a social network investing app, partnered with Kallmekris to raise awareness and drive downloads.

Public provided an affiliate link for Kallmekris and also offered her followers a discount code to incentivize subscriptions.

Dunkin

@charlidamelio #duet with @dunkin 1..2..3 with the caramel @patreeky #charlirunsondunkin #ad ♬ The Charli – Dunkin’

Charli D’Amelio is the most popular influencer on TikTok and an avid Dunkin fan. The company has partnered with the megastar to spread the love for its iconic beverages and even collaborated with her on a product launch for an iced coffee called “The Charli.”

Mercedes-Benz

@zachking Something magical showed up in the mail from @mercedesbenz #Cclass #ad ♬ original sound – Zach King

Zach King is a talented YouTuber who expanded onto TikTok when the channel launched. As a gifted videographer, he partnered with Mercedes-Benz to promote their C Class 2022 model. The video drove brand awareness and provided the brand with production-quality content to repurpose on other channels.

Key takeaway: TikTok influencer marketing is an essential strategy. Now is the time to get on board. 

There is a reason that every other major social media channel now offers the vertical-view, short-form video option, and that reason is TikTok. As the hottest new online platform, people are rapidly consuming and creating content. More importantly, creative brands are leveraging the channel to inspire consumer shopping.

Expanding your influencer program onto TikTok could be one of the best ways to unlock greater returns for your marketing department. Additionally, TikTok creators will help you deliver quality content using short-form videos across multiple social networks.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Special thanks to our friends at Grin.co for their insights on this topic.
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