Columns Here Are 4 Reasons to Start Using TikTok It’s not overly crowded and doesn’t cost anything. Published 1 year ago on November 16, 2020 By Ryan Goff Instore December 2020 Issue Share Tweet I EVEN IF YOU don’t have a TikTok account, I’m pretty sure you have heard of this controversial platform that is growing in popularity daily. In fact, it’s the most downloaded app in 2020. In case you aren’t familiar with it, TikTok is an addictive, video-based social network where users create short three-to-15-second videos. While the platform’s audience skews younger, COVID-19 has expanded its user base with more people at home on their mobile devices with more time to watch short, entertaining content. One of my agency’s clients, Smyth Jewelers, launched its TikTok account in late August 2020 and it’s quickly taken off with great success. The account, which already has nearly 14,000 followers and only 10 videos, has garnered more than 200,000 “likes” to its videos. One video that features rings through the decades has even gone viral, receiving more than 1.1 million views and 733 comments. So why should your store consider a presence on TikTok? It has a massive user base. Paired with the time users are spending on the app, there’s a lot of potential for brands to create content that gets high reach at no cost. It’s not overly crowded … yet. Think about the early days of social media before it became flooded with advertisers and ads. The potential to “be seen” and “get noticed” are very high. It doesn’t cost anything. While TikTok does offer an advertising platform, and many advertisers are seeing low costs there, many brands are benefiting from unpaid impressions. It only requires your phone. Part of TikTok’s appeal is its user-generated content. So all you need is your smartphone to help capture quick videos and you’re good to go! TikTok is not the place for polished, overproduced content. Before you begin your foray into TikTok, here are a few things to consider: Get familiar with the platform. Before you do anything, create a personal account and spend a lot of time (multiple weeks) learning the platform. And what type of content is being consumed and shared. Advertisement Don’t reinvent the wheel and don’t sell. TikTok users have come to expect a particular style of fun, engaging content — and it’s very far from what we’re used to. Observe what other top consumer TikTok brands are doing (e.g., Chipotle and Dunkin) and follow their lead. Don’t overthink or overwork it. TikTok is about short and fast. If you’re spending too long planning or creating content, you’re probably doing it wrong. If you’re struggling, get help! Identify a couple of heavy TikTok users in your social circles and get them to teach you the ropes. If you’re interested in getting in front of a new, younger audience, strike while the iron is hot! Take some of these tips and start creating content. 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