It’s a battle between the social platforms: TikTok versus Facebook. While Facebook has longevity on its side, TikTok has rapidly gained traction among younger audiences. This, in turn, has led to TikTok’s rise when it comes to influencer marketing. More influencers are making their start on the video-centric platform, leaving Facebook in the dust.
Because of this, TikTok is set to surpass Facebook in its influencer marketing spend this year. And while Instagram still reigns supreme for now, YouTube may also be brought down by TikTok in two years’ time. How has the revolutionary social platform done it? Keep reading to find out TikTok’s secrets to success.
1. An Ability to Go Viral Overnight
TikTok’s algorithm allows influencers to become overnight internet sensations. Unlike other platforms, TikTok is set up to prioritize entertainment over follower count. For instance, a video that is seeing a lot of play will be served to others regardless of who posted it. This is unlike platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, which prioritize follower count over entertainment value.
TikTok’s main discovery page — called the “For You” page — is driven by that entertainment-focused algorithm. This means that even small influencers can get in front of a massive amount of viewers. This enables emerging influencers to make it quicker on TikTok than the other social platforms.
And since influencers generally get paid according to following size (the unwritten industry rule for posts is $100 per 10,000), brands with smaller marketing budgets can still succeed with influencer marketing on the platform. Prior to TikTok, brands without enough dollars wouldn’t be able to afford their desired influencers. These influencers were able to charge higher prices for their content since they had to work really hard to amass their follower count. Now, however, there are more influencers available who are able to make a mark without tons of followers. This enables more brands to consider influencer marketing and tap into TikTok’s engaging potential.
2. A Streamlined Format
Like it or not, TikTok is strictly video content. Facebook and Instagram, alternatively, have multiple types of content formats, including posts, stories, and reels in addition to video. TikTok’s streamlined content format allows for influencers to get really good at creating engaging videos. While there is a learning curve at first, TikTok videos are relatively speedy to create.
Furthermore, the app was designed for quick, snappy videos. These types of video clips cater to short attention spans, which is why the platform is favored by younger generations. This brevity is also a perk for influencers, who are able to batch-shoot videos and post them throughout the week. As with any social platform, posting consistently is key, so influencers who can create content in bulk may see more long-term success.
For brands or start-ups looking to expand their video portfolio, TikTok is a great avenue. Brands are able to contract with influencers who are skilled in their craft. This takes the pressure off of brands that may not have the bandwidth to produce engaging video content. By working with a few influencers, they can discover what type of influencer is the most strategic choice for future partnerships.
3. A Trustworthy Relationship
One of the most appealing aspects of TikTok is its home-grown feel. The app is personable, which means that audiences soon come to trust the platform’s influencers. Compare that to Instagram, for instance, where influencer marketing can feel a bit forced. It’s harder to trust someone when every other thing they post is for another brand.
On TikTok, influencers can generate a lot more content quickly. Because of this, not every video is likely to be for an ad. Influencers are able to test and try out different video formats as well as types of content to see what resonates. And again, because of the nature of TikTok’s algorithm, audiences aren’t necessarily seeing all of an influencer’s latest videos. They are likely only seeing the ones that platform feels will appeal most to them.
According to an Ad Week study, 49% of TikTok users have purchased a product after seeing it advertised on the app. With a success rate that high, it’s no wonder that brands want to tap into the platform’s audience. TikTok’s user base skews younger, making it a no-brainer for brands looking to capture the attention of Gen Z and Millennials, generations that have their eyes on up-and-coming brands and products.
There’s a certain amount of testing that goes into influencer marketing. What may work one day may not necessarily work the next. That’s what makes TikTok so appealing to brands, as the barrier to entry is much lower than it is on Facebook. Spending money on even one micro or nano influencer can get a brand’s foot in the door. It’s also a way to see how content is resonating with audiences and how to scale for future brand initiatives.
When selecting an influencer, keep in mind that TikTok-first influencers know the platform inside and out. They understand what is needed to create content that is engaging, but also targeted to reach your desired audiences. It’s exactly this type of content that will drive more conversions and yield a larger ROI.
Avoid the temptation to select an influencer based solely on their follower size or even their past brand deals. Instead, look for those who are up-to-date on the latest TikTok trends and have demonstrated the ability to consistently create attention-grabbing content.