Getting Started On TikTok: A Guide For Consumer Goods Brands

By: Rachael Seda

You’ve seen the wave of change across your social media channels. Short-form video is here to stay, and the brands that fully embrace it will reap the rewards–– upticks in reach, engagement, and overall growth. As a consumer goods brand, you have the ability to create viral content of your own (or with the help of influencers) if a consistent effort is put forth into your short-form video strategy. So, if you have yet to jump on the TikTok bandwagon, we’re here to help get you started! Let’s dive in.

Choosing An Account & Setting Up Your Profile

First, you’ll need to download the TikTok app from the Google Play or App Store. Once downloaded, you’ll want to sign up for an account with your email address. Then click “Manage Account” and choose “Switch To A Business Account.” You’ll want to fill your profile in its entirety, including linking to your Instagram account and adding your website. Business accounts offer performance and audience data, a 500,000+ commercial music library, and a web business suite. If you choose to start working with influencers and content creators, you’ll be able to utilize Spark Ads through an Ad Account in TikTok. Read more about this HERE.

Tips For Creating Scroll-Stopping Content

While you have the auto-play feature of TikTok on your side, it’s up to you to create scroll-stopping content for your audience. You only have 1-2 seconds to get their attention so utilizing hooks, movement, and ensuring your lighting and sound quality is on point will help you achieve this. It’s also a great idea to keep a close eye on trending content and sounds and how you can relate them back to your industry (if appropriate). We recommend creating a healthy mix of original content and trends to get the most views/engagement possible.

Adding Captions & Hashtags On TikTok

In the beginning, TikTok limited the character count in captions to 100. Thankfully, this has since been bumped up to 300 characters, allowing you to add a concise caption with a handful of relevant hashtags. We recommend adding 2-3 related to your brand and/or the video topic. You can also add a trending hashtag to help boost your video’s discovery.

Working With Content Creators

As a business, you’ll have the opportunity to work with Content Creators through TikTok’s Creator Marketplace OR by reaching out directly to individuals you’d like to work with. If you choose to go through the Creator Marketplace, you’ll be able to search for Creators based on their region, topics, reach, average views, and more! Then you can invite them to collaborate on your campaign directly in the app. If accepted, you’ll be able to manage all aspects of the campaign on TikTok. If you go the other route and reach out to creators directly via DM or email, you’ll want to ensure that you have an influencer management system in place. Grin is a popular influencer relationship system used by a number of credible brands!

Bonus Tip: Strategy & Posting

While TikTok is a place for iPhone quality videos, you also need a consistent posting schedule in place to grow, especially if you’re working with influencers. If members on your team won’t be creating and posting content, we recommend searching for an outside individual to become the “face” of the brand. Duolingo does a great job of this with their mascot, and so does the Washington Post! When it comes to growth, we recommend posting a minimum of one video per day. Batching out a week’s worth of content at a time will help you achieve this without the stress of having to create content day-of.