To be a marketing success on TikTok, don’t think like a marketer

By our News Team | 2022

Forget value propositions, messaging hierarchies and rigid content strategies. You’ll get bogged down and miss what TikTok is all about: Fun!

TikTok has come a long way since the increasingly more bizarre dance and fitness challenges it became known for during the pandemic — and brands are taking notice.

Lebo Moerane, Social and Digital Lead at brand and customer experience agency VMLY&R South Africa, has listed seven rules of engagement that will set digital marketers up for success.

Social Media

Photo by Cottonbro from Pexels

1.Be relatable

TikTok is a great example of consumer-centric content. Rather than getting bogged down by the typical marketing strategy of value propositions, messaging hierarchies and the like, just play.

Bring your brand message across in a way that shows where you fit into the culture.

2.Use audio

If you’ve ever tried to open TikTok sneakily during a meeting, you’ll know that it is a sound-on platform — and you will not make that mistake again. Sound is extremely important for TikTok, from voiceovers and text-to-speech to sound effects and music.

Brands that don’t have the budgets to buy rights to a track can use original audio or remix trending audio.

3.Be yourself

Find what’s endemic to your brand and think of creative ways to bring it to life in your content.

4.Be agile

Trends get sparked on TikTok on a daily basis. While a content calendar is important, it should not be so rigid that it doesn’t allow your brand to jump on a trend.

Riding a trend gives your message momentum and makes your brand feel more relevant and connected to culture.

5.Facilitate user-generated content

When you create for TikTok, don’t create content to be shared; create content to be emulated. Give your audience the building blocks for creating their own content that has your brand front and centre. This could be:

  • a filter
  • a challenge
  • audio, or
  • anything else that sparks creativity.

6.Embrace imperfection

TikTok users aren’t looking for beautiful content — they’re looking for content that’s entertaining and relatable.

Instead of creating high-end content and posting it to TikTok, use the native editing features within the app to create content that looks, feels and sounds like a TikTok.

7.Use creators

Use them not for their influence but for their ability to produce content that’s fit for the platform. Creators were there first and they know a lot more about how to make a successful TikTok than the brand manager who just logged on for the first time today.

So, collaborate with them to help you create content that feels right for the platform.

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    Dr Kin Kariisa

    Group CEO - Next Media

    Dr. Kin Kariisa is an extraordinary force at the helm of Next Media Services, a conglomerate encompassing NBS TV, Nile Post, Sanyuka TV, Next Radio, Salam TV, Next Communication, Next Productions, and an array of other influential enterprises. His dynamic role as Chief Executive Officer exemplifies his unwavering commitment to shaping media, business, and community landscapes.
    With an esteemed academic journey, Dr. Kariisa’s accolades include an Honorary PhD in exemplary community service from the United Graduate College inTexas, an MBA from United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya, a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Huazong University in China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University.
    Dr. Kariisa pursued PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. As a dynamic educator, he has shared his expertise as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at both Makerere University and Radboud University.

    Dr Kin did his PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radbond University in Nigmegen, Netherlands. He previously served as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda and Radbond University in Netherlands.

    Dr Kin did his postgraduate courses in Strategic Business Management, Strategic Leadership Communication and Strategies for Leading Successful Change Initiatives at Harvard University, Boston USA.

    • Other current and previous roles played by Dr Kin Kariisa:
    • Lecturer of e-Government and Information Security to graduate students at Makerere University, Kampala and Radbond University in the Netherlands
    • Director of Eco Bank Uganda Limited, one of the largest banks in Africa
    • Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters, an umbrella industry association for all Television, Radio and online broadcasters in Uganda.
    • Chairman of Board of Directors of Nile Hotel International, that owns the leading hotel in Uganda, Kampala Serena Hotel.
    • Chairman of Board of Directors of Soliton Telmec Uganda, the leading telecom company in Optic fibre business managing over 80% of optic fibre in Uganda.