By Dr. Samantha Bietsch
Faculty Member, School of Business, American Public University
As you are scrolling through your social media feed on Instagram or Facebook, you may notice an increased number of short videos set to music. These videos are commonly posted by celebrities, influencers or even your friends. Often, these videos pique your interest as they are set to catchy tunes and can be humorous.
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These videos are from a popular video-making app called TikTok. This app makes it easy for anyone to create a short video and set it to music. According to Forbes, “Users that can combine entertaining or informative content in a 15- or 60-second video clip have the potential to see almost immediate results, say many advertising agencies.”
The Popularity of Social Media in Digital Marketing
Social media has been popular in digital marketing for some time. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest, for instance, have all been used by many companies to target young consumers who are digital natives.
It is not just the young who are target audiences, either. Many different demographics can be easily reached on social media. For instance, the Pew Research Center notes that 69% of adults are on Facebook.
Is TikTok Worth the Investment in Business Time and Effort?
So if marketers are already excelling at social media marketing, do we really need to invest our time and effort in TikTok? In short, yes, you may want to consider it.
What makes TikTok unique is its ability to target people on a level we have yet to see in other ways. The more videos you watch, the more the platform gets an idea of what you are interested in viewing.
Since TikTok videos are often short and humorous, it’s easy to watch a lot of videos in a short amount of time. Forbes notes, “Part of the reason for the rising investment is that consumers now watch an average of 16 hours of online video per week, a 52 percent increase since 2018. And they still want more.”
Since there are many TikTok videos to watch, the app is continually collecting information about the different areas in which you are interested. That capacity translates into the ability to target you, the audience member, in a sophisticated fashion.
How TikTok Is Advantageous for Business Owners
There are a few different ways that using TikTok videos for digital marketing could be beneficial to the marketing world. However, this strategy is clearly more advantageous for some industries and products than others. For instance, beauty and health business owners could create a makeup tutorial or showcase a fitness device, which would be easier than a publisher creating a video for a book.
Business owners could also study how influencers with a large following effectively use TikTok. Marketers could focus on who is creating videos for their desired target market and use TikTok’s built-in data to analyze a video’s success.
For instance, let’s say that you don’t want to make a video for a fitness device, but you would like a fitness guru with a lot of followers to create a video that shows how the fitness device is used. The data generated by the TikTok video could then be studied by analysts.
In addition, another advantage to using TikTok is the reserved ads on this platform. TikTok says that “Reserved ads are a type of campaign that you can book as part of a managed service from TikTokAdvertising.com.”
TikTok Is Highly Widespread and Will Probably Continue to Grow in Popularity
Currently, TikTok has 800 million users and is the most downloaded app on the Apple app store. This is an incredible achievement when you think the app has only been around for four years.
Will we continue to see an upward trend in utilizing the TikTok app in digital marketing? This trend remains to be seen. But right now, it is clear that this app is generating excitement, and with excitement often comes the opportunity to create more effective marketing for consumers.
About the Author
Dr. Samantha Bietsch is currently an Associate Professor in the School of Business. She has an M.B.A. in finance from American Intercontinental University and a D.B.A. in marketing from Argosy University. Prior to entering into higher education, Dr. Bietsch held numerous roles in the financial services industry.
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