How to increase engagement on the TikTok platform: what are the best creative practices?
For engagement, TikTok is one of the fastest-growing social networks, competing with Facebook in terms of video, which has been a critical success factor for advertisers using the platform. Moreover, TikTok is not only for very young audiences, as the myth often says.
Traditional brands are taking a wait-and-see approach, but it’s already possible to visualize the impact of establishing a presence for your brand on TikTok. At Relevant Audience, we have seen that, with the right content, TikTok can be the right channel for any type of product or service.
Here are some examples of content types and formats to maximize the creative potential of TikTok; at Relevant Audience, we are data-driven, so we will let the data do the talking:
Use high-resolution videos
When developing online campaigns, we are often told to use lower resolution for the best user experience, but according to TikTok data, 83% of the top-performing video ads on TikTok are high resolution (720p or higher), and these have, on average 5.4% more impressions than low-resolution ones.
High-resolution videos make a solid first impression for your brand, and most modern cameras and even phones have the capacity to shoot in high resolution. Therefore, we recommend that you set up your video quality in high resolution and make sure that you preview before publishing, as sometimes video editing software compresses the quality, or other technical issues can occur.
Vertical formats work best
The data also demonstrates that videos created in a vertical aspect ratio generated 40% more impressions compared to videos using a square or horizontal aspect ratio.
Of course, you can edit your videos before posting, so in theory, they are viewable in different formats, such as by customizing the background, but we recommend optimizing the video from the outset for the best results. Features such as blurs or black bars at the edge of the screen may impact your brand image, as they are not attractive.
Add a call to action (CTA)
Users see a range of content and ads every day; sometimes, adding direction by being transparent and direct about what you want them to do can help when it comes to engaging with your product. eCommerce brands, in particular, should be straightforward with users about what to do after watching the video.
Try adding a CTA to encourage your audience to take action, which can be added to the text of your video caption. Moreover, TikToks that include a CTA have on average, 56% more impressions compared to videos that don’t add anything additional on-screen.
Short(er) is sweet on TikTok
We understand the challenge of choosing between different key messages and value propositions, but in reality, people online, especially TikTokers, don’t have much time and will quickly switch videos if the message is not clear.
However, there is no need to go overboard. Short is sweet, but take care not to make it too short! The data shows that 1 in 4 of the top-performing TikTok videos are between 21 and 34 seconds, and these clips, on average, have 1.6% more impressions.
The best approach is to keep the video short while ensuring there is a key message and benefit so the user knows what to do after watching the video.
Mix up multiple scenes
Product placement matters on TikTok. Platform users appreciate a variety of different views when you’re trying to demonstrate your brand, and the data shows that 99% of the top-performing e-commerce videos employ this technique. Videos with varied scenes generated 41% more impressions than videos featuring one person or one scene all over the video.
Bonus tip: Include a character to enhance ad memorability
The data shows that creative content that includes characters, animated or an actual person, delivers more brand impact than that with no characters. Based on analysis from TikTok For Business and IPSOS, there was an 8% lift in ad recall when characters (human/animated) were used instead of visuals only and a 9% lift in ad recall when human characters were used instead of animated characters. So get creative and add some character!
TikTok is proving to be an excellent platform for brands to scale up and reach an engaged audience demographic. However, as with all online platforms, there are some challenges, particularly with TikTok, in employing the best creative practices because the platform relies so much on this aspect. So, test out the above best practices to see if they work for your brand, and be sure to always measure the impact and optimize in terms of key metrics such as conversion rate. One final piece of advice: go ahead and use the platform yourself first; this will help you understand what the most popular videos look like, what special effects or features are working, and most importantly, what types of content people like to engage with and why.
If you have any questions about TikTok, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org