The eCommerce Seller’s Guide To TikTok: How To Advertise Effectively On TikTok As An eCommerce Brand

When it comes to advertising your eCommerce brand effectively, you have two options.

You either keep up with the times or you get left behind and right now – that trend is the video-sharing social networking platform, TikTok.

Owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, this application offers a way for users to make and share a variety of 15-second to 1-minute long videos with a worldwide audience.

Currently, this platform is used for several different genres from dance, comedy, education, and the list goes on. These short clips can be viewed by any number of their 689 million active users from all over the world.

If you have an eCommerce brand or product that you want to advertise, TikTok is your one-stop-shop.

This is the eCommerce Seller’s guide to TikTok:

  1. Get Creative

You have a minimum of 15 seconds and a maximum of 1 minute to make your lasting impact as a brand. To pull this off, you need to grab the user’s attention in the first frame as users can quickly swipe to the next video if they’re not immediately interested.

You’ll need to land on a clear hook to keep your new audience engaged – a fun way to do this is to make it interactive. Users have the option to double-tap their screen to ‘like’ your video or follow through to the CTA, they can comment and follow your page too. 

A fun way to interact with your audience could be to gamify your video. For example, create an animation whereby clicking double-tapping on a certain object would allow them to buy a product, continue to your website, or find out more.

  1. Be Strategic

Your video can only link to one CTA or product, you need to ensure that your ad is driving your audience to the most effective destination. Avoid taking your new cold traffic leads through a page where they will have to click through to make a purchase – take them right to the target page.

With directiveness in mind, it’s time to think about your CTA. If you’re wanting TikTok users to perform a certain action, you will need to provide a clear and direct CTA, something as simple as ‘Tap To Purchase’ or ‘Tap To Download’. Encourage them to pursue the CTA with either a mention in the caption or through the CTA button.

  1. Think Visuals

As well as being mindful of grabbing the user’s attention in the first frame, there are some important things to note about the layout of TikTok.

Firstly, TikTok displays videos in a vertical portrait layout – to maximize your audience’s experience your videos should fit the ad specs and be made to watch on a mobile phone.

Secondly, TikTok’s app interface partially obscures a few areas of the video frame. For example, the ‘follow’, ‘like’, ‘share’, and ‘comment’ buttons will obscure some of the bottom right of the video. These are all small things to consider when designing your video to ensure it’s professional, aesthetic, and user-friendly.

  1. Be Time Conscious

As mentioned earlier, you are only given a small time frame between 15 seconds and 1 minute. What you do with this time is vital and your advertising must be concise. In fact, TikTok recommends making your ad only 10 seconds long to retain the user’s attention. 

Be aware that users may not watch the entire video so be sure to include any critical information in the first frame or the caption. You may not have long to get your message across but by being creative and using all the layers available to you, you can create an effective advertisement for your eCommerce business.

  1. Interact With Your Audience

With 689 million users currently active and making videos on TikTok, how can you make your advertisement stand out from the crowd?

Our advice to you would be to not just make ads, but make connections with an audience. This is your opportunity to tap into unique engagement solutions and interactive formats to connect with your potential customers from all over the world. 

Another way to create connections and gain trust within the TikTok realm is to work with recognizable talent or influencers. Once users see a face that they are already familiar with and look up to, they are far more likely to be engaged and follow-up on your product.

So there you have it, the 5 steps to creating a sticky, immersive, and impossible-to-ignore advertisement on TikTok for your eCommerce business. We have already witnessed countless success stories that exploded thanks to TikTok, from clothing brands to skincare products – this platform is one of the best ways to get the word out about your brand.

One example of this is the Clean & Clear skincare range:

Clean & Clear launched their new limited edition face wash “My Swag” and they wanted to increase their brand and product awareness within the female teen audience across India.

They wanted to invite them to engage with the brand by showcasing their diverse personalities so they launched a Hashtag Challenge – ‘#UnbottleApnaSwag’. This challenge featured 5 bottle packaging styles corresponding to 5 personality types and users were asked which type they most identified with.

To get the word out and to further personalize the 5 personalities on the “My Swag” bottles, Clean & Clear released 5 rap songs by 5 top female influencers to inspire users to get started. 

1.96 billion video views, 172 million likes/comments/shares, and 2.62 million user-generated videos from the Hashtag Challenge later, Clean & Clear’s Branded Hashtag Challenges was one of the most successful advertising campaigns yet.

Yours could be next – it’s time to get creating!

This expert content is a guest post from adQuadrant, an Omnichannel digital agency focused on creating accelerated growth for Direct to Consumer brands. With a strong focus in paid media strategy, adQuadrant believes in a client-centric, consultative approach to drive maximum revenue.  

To connect with adQuadrant for a complimentary marketing check-up, reach out here.

Jen Root
Jen Root is a Senior Marketing Manager at adQuadrant, an Omnichannel Digital Agency focused on accelerated growth for D2C brands. Jen oversees partnerships and new client success at adQuadrant and has 15 years of experience in marketing, advertising, and business development.

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