TikTok search ads: new beta testing for ads in search results

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As we detailed in our last TikTok article (Click Here) TikTok is an excellent platform to engage your audience, and it is one of the fastest-growing social networks. However, aside from content marketing, TikTok is also quickly developing an advertising platform to compete with market leaders such as YouTube and Facebook. In this TikTok article, we look at the new beta search ads feature and how to start advertising through the TikTok Ads Manager to boost your return on ad spend (ROAS) and drive actual business results.

Where and how will the search results appear?

TikTok launched beta testing for ads in search results, which provides a different way to reach your TikTok audience by leveraging their search terms. TikTok’s new search ads do not yet include keyword targeting for advertisers, just placements for now. These ads will be tagged with a ‘Sponsored’ label, a similar technique as other advertising platforms, and will appear above the “others searched for” terms listing section within the user’s search results page when they perform a particular search query, e.g. “best coffee in the world”. This essentially means that the search results will appear within the first four results displayed, in a similar method to how Google places paid search ads yet in a slightly more simplified way at this stage.

What are the benefits, and how can advertisers leverage the data? 

It’s always about creating ads that solve user problems, for example, by making “how-to” video demonstrations of their products that address specific questions.

As the advertising platform capability on TikTok develops, the goal is that the search results ads feature will enable TikTok advertisers to target users searching for specific terms. This could be an effective method to reach people who are further along in their customer journey in terms of the sales funnel and, therefore, may have higher purchase intent and interest; this targeted approach could be a great addition to the overall TikTok content marketing approach to create and promote engaging short videos.

Moreover, TikTok will also give advertisers access to a list of the search terms that drove the clicks on their campaign. Once you are granted permission to run ads in search results on TikTok, you can then pull the converting search terms for your ads, which would add another tool for potential ad targeting through the platform. For example, to improve your conversion rates, you could make a list of those converting search terms and begin adding those into the titles of your top-performing TikTok content to repurpose and optimize your existing videos. Or you can use the data as a guide for your audience targeting and content titles in the future to gain more value from your overall TikTok strategy by using a data-driven approach.

You can use this data alongside TikTok tools like the ‘Top Ads’ feature, launched last year, enabling advertisers to hunt for the best performing TikTok ad campaigns, filtered by ‘Ad Type’ and ‘Region and ‘Industry’. You can then filter more deeply into the ad results by time (either last seven days or last 30 days) and also by performance (with the options of CTR, Impressions, six-second video view rate), ensuring that you pick out the most relevant examples for your brand. Once you have performed the above search, you can use this data to gain inspiration from their content creation.

What is next for TikTok search ads?

It is not clear yet who these ads are available to, but the action to take now is to get ready to make your brand searchable on TikTok. Once TikTok search ads are available in your account, the new feature can provide a different opportunity to place your offer before your target audience, who may have a higher purchase intent than other placements on TikTok. TikTok is fast becoming an influential platform for converting impressions into sales for an extensive range of brands and products. If you have taken Google, Facebook, YouTube, and other ad platforms as far as you can at the moment, TikTok search ads are certainly worth testing out to see if it works for your product. As other platforms have removed some previously available data to marketers, there is a window of opportunity to potentially gain a competitive advantage by leveraging the power and data of TikTok and these new advertising options.

If you have any questions about TikTok or would like to explore other advertising options, please feel free to contact us at info@relevantaudience.com

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