Daily Insights

Can TikTok Tempt New Users?

By: Mackenzie Baker | Aug 25, 2020

TikTok launched its largest U.S. ad campaign to date that promotes it as a place to kick off careers, raise money for charity, and have fun with family. The “It Starts On TikTok” campaign arrives on the heels of a potential ban by the U.S. government over security concerns. Through the new endeavor, TikTok could convince viewers that it is not home to security threats, but rather a place to connect with users around the country and share common interests. For the new campaign, TikTok created ads for digital media and television, each varying in length from 15-30 seconds, a nod to the typical length of a TikTok video. The videos feature popular TikTokers, as well as viral trends like the “wipe it down” challenge, where people wipe down a mirror and appear in a new outfit.  

Though TikTok has seen colossal download growth in the past year according to a Gartner report, promoting its campaign outside of its main app could help extend its reach. To do so, TikTok is running ads on broadcast TV, including ABC, NBC, ESPN, and TNT. By jumping on a variety of channels that cater to different age groups, the platform could appeal to a wider audience and connect with consumers beyond the majority young people that already make up its user base. TikTok will also advertise on Hulu, Spotify, YouTube, and iHeartMedia in addition to on all of its own social channels. On Twitter, Instagram, and of course, TikTok, it is promoting its commercials using the hashtag #ItStartsonTikTok. Users are encouraged to share their favorite TikTok videos with the hashtag to further drum up support for the app. On TikTok itself, the hashtag has generated over 950 million views, showing loyal fans are already highly interactive with the brand campaign. TikTok launched the campaign first in the U.S. to generate support during an unpredictable time, but will extend the ad campaign globally next month.

The future of TikTok remains uncertain, but that’s not stopping brands or even the company itself from launching new campaigns on the platform. By creating ads outside of its app, TikTok can connect with loyal fans through familiar videos and encourage new users to download the app by teasing just a touch of the array of content available.