Recently, social media giant TikTok announced on their blog that they have surpassed a major milestone: more than 1 billion people worldwide are tuning in and using their popular video-creating and sharing app.
So, what does this mean for TikTok small business accounts and entrepreneurs? Well, as shown by the #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt trend on the app, viral videos and strong online brand presence have led some companies to sell out their products within days after rising to global fame.
This phenomenon has especially influenced the beauty industry, with products such as Elf’s “Poreless Putty Primer”, L’Oreal Paris’s “Infallible Powder Foundation”, and The Ordinary’s “AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution” being among the most notable of viral “TikTok makeup products”.
The bottom line: TikTok is a powerful social media app that brands can leverage and build their online presence to drive sales. Big cosmetics brands such as Elf, L’Oreal Paris, and The Ordinary have shown that there is huge potential for marketing your beauty products online.
To help you start out, we discuss some essential steps in developing a TikTok marketing strategy to promote your small business.
In a previous post, we discussed how to cultivate your Brand Image online – and TikTok is no exception to these tips! When starting a TikTok account for your private label beauty brand, it is important to determine exactly who it is that you want your content to reach.
How old are they? How do they identify themselves? How can your beauty products help them? These are a few questions to ask to develop a branding strategy before you upload your first video.
After you figure out who you want your audience to be, the next step is to figure out how you can reach them. With this, there is no one-size-fits-all way to be successful!
Some brands prefer to pioneer their own style, while others solely follow trends to maximize reach. We suggest taking a hybrid approach; making unique content while also participating in trends when they align with your brand voice.
How is your private label beauty brand different from others? What kind of videos will make you stand out? Here are 2 areas of TikTok creation where you can exercise creativity in showcasing your private label beauty products:
1. Filming and Editing
Displaying the product packaging with an aesthetically pleasing video, doing color swatches, using multiple products in a “get ready with me” format, or making informative videos about the product you are offering, are all common video marketing approaches in the beauty industry. To set yourself apart, we suggest putting your own touch by using different filming and editing techniques! An example of a unique approach is using macro lenses to film close-up makeup videos, like beauty creator @closeup.asthetic . Don’t be afraid to step outside the box and have fun with it!
Although making videos that use trending audio clips is an important tactic for TikTok growth (discussed later), there are some advantages to using less popular music.
When viewers see a video in their feed, they can click on the audio to open up a page that displays all videos which have used the same sound. These sound pages are organized by featuring the most popular videos at the top and, if the audio is trending, you may be competing with millions of videos!
However, if you use an audio clip with less competition, you have greater chances of your video being featured in one of these prime spots near the top. This tactic is especially valuable if you’re an early adopter of a music clip that is gaining popularity on the app. As more people use and interact with the audio after your post, traffic generated by other creators can find its way to your content and increase your engagement!
On the other hand, following trends can help you reach wider audiences and increase the likelihood of going viral. This is because when users continually like videos that are similar to each other, the TikTok algorithm will show you more related videos on the “For You” page. Like we suggested in the “underrated audio” section, we recommend using audio when it’s “hot” so you have greater chances of your videos being exposed to more viewers.
Trends on TikTok are not just about popular audios but can also involve using a certain video format accompanied by a specific hashtag. For example, the “#cranberrychallenge” was a viral trend that started after user @420doggface208 shared a TikTok of himself cruising on a skateboard, sipping Ocean Spray cranberry juice, and playing the song “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac.
After his original post, thousands of people uploaded their own videos following the format of his video. This phenomenon occurs regularly on the app, and these videos are more likely to be shown when they’re trending.
It’s important to be selective with the trends you participate in so that they either highlight your product or contribute to your brand voice. But, if you can take seemingly irrelevant trends and make them relevant to your brand or product, this creativity can pay off big time!
Take Glossier for example: not only do they have videos showing off their products and use classic TikTok influencer marketing strategies like featuring beauty gurus on their page – but they also aren’t afraid to join meme culture and have fun. This funny video featured on their account, along with several others, sometimes garners at least 20x more views than their traditional beauty ones!
After you start posting content and gaining traction, you can utilize the built-in Creator Analytics feature to discover your followers’ basic demographics.
These metrics are useful to see what kind of people (and potential customers) are attracted to your page. The main pieces of information you can find in this feature are listed below, along with how it might help you determine whether you’re connecting with your target audience.
This metric is useful if your target audience and customers belong to a specific gender. If you find that your page isn’t attracting your intended demographic, then you might want to consider why this is happening and alter your TikTok branding strategy to reach the intended gender demographic.
On the other hand, this information could also be used to change your idea of who you should be marketing your product towards. It is important to note, however, that this feature does not include non-binary genders who may be a part of your target audience.
If your desired audience is from a certain location, this metric can inform whether you are successfully attracting followers from that area. If you find that you aren’t, then you might have to change your TikTok beauty content to better align with your target audience’s values, lifestyle, trends, etc.
This is an extremely useful metric that shows you, in recent history, what days and times your followers are most active on TikTok. Using this information, you can decide what times to post that have a greater chance of being seen by your followers.
“Creator-driven word-of-mouth marketing” is the term that is used to describe TikTok’s influencer marketing community. As we discussed in a previous blog post, reaching out to creators by offering an incentive is a common strategy to have your products exposed to large audiences and ultimately redirect traffic to your page. Here, it is important that the creators you work with are aligning with your values and brand image.
According to Upfluence, micro-influencers (who have less than 50,000 followers) have some of the highest engagement rates on TikTok compared to other social media apps, and drastically higher engagement rates than mega-influencers.
To use TikTok influencer marketing to your advantage, we recommend reaching out to small creators with higher levels of engagement either through gifting products, collaboration or paid posts. For example, large TikTok makeup and skincare accounts such as Glossier and Fenty Beauty often collaborate with creators and repost their videos on their own brand page which diversifies their own content. Hopefully, with enough exposure, other creators will be tempted to purchase your products for themselves, and maybe even create videos reviewing these products at their own will!
TikTok is a fun, creative, and effective way to get your product out there and connect with potential customers.
Determining your target audience, creating interesting content, understanding analytics, and using strategies such as TikTok influencer marketing are all key steps in promoting your brand.
By following these recommendations for building your TikTok account, you too can turn it into a powerful marketing tool for your private label beauty company!
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