With the TikTok platform being the latest battleground for brands vying for consumers’ attention, it’s important that brands, advertisers and agencies are fully prepared and equipped to break into this new battleground in the most effective way possible.
Below are 4 tips for how advertisers can hit the ground running and be successful in TikTok Ads.
1. Ensure Proper Setup of Business Center Account & Ad Account
Similar to other popular ads platforms like Facebook Ads Manager, TikTok Ads provides advertisers the ability to manage multiple Ad Accounts within a single Business Center Account. However, unlike Facebook and other platforms where the creation of these accounts is streamlined and largely handled by the advertiser or brand, TikTok Ads provides several ways for advertisers to create these accounts, each with varying outcomes.
If you try to manually create the Business Center Account through www.business.tiktok.com, you will end up creating a Business Center Account that lacks various features that may appeal to agencies and may not be able to perform desired outcomes like Monthly Invoicing. This is why agencies should instead reach out to sales reps or account managers at TikTok Ads directly to receive a registration link to then create their Business Center Account.
The same is true for the creation of the Ad Account, where manually creating a self-serve account yourself may result in the account itself not being fully fledged with all of the available features. By having the folks at TikTok Ads create the Ad Account for you, it will ensure that you have the latest and greatest version of an Ad Account that is able to take advantage of enhanced features and Beta opportunities, including quicker ad reviews and inclusion in Beta programs.
Download TikTok’s Business Center User Playbook for Agency for tips and tricks on how agencies, in particular, should handle the Business Center/Ad Account creation process.
2. Let TikTok Users Introduce Your Brand to TikTok
With the TikTok platform being predicated on user-generated video content, it can be blatantly apparent and highly ineffective when brands try to serve their more traditional, produced ad content that might see strong performance on other ad platforms like Facebook or Snapchat. Instead of utilizing existing content for TikTok, many brands are opting to leverage influencers to help develop a batch of creative assets that align with the UGC principles of the platform and allow the brand to more seamlessly blend in with the surrounding TikTok content.
Although TikTok has recently sunset various influencer content programs like the Creator Starter Pack, it has introduced the TikTok Creator Marketplace (TCM), a platform for managing collaborations with creators. TCM allows businesses and brands to find their perfect creator, manage collaborations, receive data insights, and promote branded content with targeted ads. One of the greatest advantages of TCM is being able to manage and facilitate the entire influencer process directly with the influencer, as opposed to having TikTok facilitate all communications between the brand and influencer.
Visit the TikTok Creator Marketplace to learn more about how to find creators, set up campaigns, and introduce your brand to the TikTok platform in a highly effective way.
3. Utilize Pixels to Create Audiences and Track Conversions
As with any ads platform, TikTok Ads has the ability to integrate a pixel on your website in order to track events like pageviews, view content, add to cart, and place an order. Users who complete these events, or other in-platform events like engaging with your ad content in a particular campaign, can then be turned into audiences that you can target in your campaigns.
Unlike most other ads platforms, the TikTok pixel struggles to match any website events back to TikTok users if those users were not driven to the website from TikTok itself, which means that advertisers who want to launch their first paid efforts reaching remarketing audiences will actually struggle to create those audiences without TikTok driving the traffic to the site. This creates a bit of a chicken or the egg scenario where advertisers want to create strong, relevant remarketing audiences, but can’t do so until actually launching efforts and driving traffic to the site.
The only way for advertisers to hit the ground running with remarketing audiences and avoid having to reach lower-intent interest-based audiences in their first paid campaigns is to upload customer files into the platform, which can then be targeted or used to generate lookalike audiences. Whether using a customer list or not to generate an initial pool of users to target, it’s recommended that brands set up their remarketing audiences as soon as possible upon launching so that audiences begin to populate immediately and can be used for future efforts. Visit the TikTok Business Help Center to learn more about how to install the TikTok pixel and set up website events.
4. Strive for Ideal Pacing
In addition to the account setup process and pixel event tracking, another stark difference between TikTok Ads and other major advertising platforms is the ability to generate consistent spend, or pacing, over a period of time. Like other platforms, TikTok Ads allows advertisers to select a Lifetime Budget or Daily Budget for their campaigns or ad groups, but unlike other platforms, TikTok Ads fails to spend that budget evenly over time when selecting a Lifetime Budget. While other platforms use basic math to inform how much to spend on a daily basis ($3,000 budget over 30 days = $100/day), TikTok uses its own machine learning to identify which days it thinks your budget will be most effective, causing TikTok Ads campaigns with Lifetime Budget to spend nothing on some days and to vastly exceed their pacing on other days.
As we approach the holiday season when many advertisers will have single-day or point-in-time promotions, like Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it can quickly become unnerving to trust TikTok will spend your campaign budget on the days that you can’t afford to not be in-market. This is why TikTok suggests that advertisers who prefer a more even day-to-day spend should utilize the Daily Budget option, as that option will try to spend the budget level you’ve selected without exceeding it. For best practice, advertisers should set a Lifetime Budget at the campaign level as a maximum spend cap for the overall campaign, and then select Daily Budgets at the Ad Group level to generate a more consistent daily spend across the campaign flight. Learn more about TikTok’s Lifetime and Daily Budgets options.
Vladimir Jones is Colorado’s original independent, integrated advertising agency, with offices in Denver and Colorado Springs. We believe in brilliant brands and love making the world love them as much as we do.