7 min.
TikTok: what opportunities for brands?
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TikTok: what opportunities for brands?

Social Media Content

Do you know TikTok, the application of the moment among Generation Z?

A top 10 download in 2019  on the  app store , this modern version of Vine allows users to easily create 15-second videos with soundtracks. First launched as Musical.ly, the app was originally used to film yourself performing  lip sync . It was then purchased by Bytedance to become the application in its current version. Today, TikTok is used to generate videos of all kinds (comedy, dance, etc.) lasting 15 seconds. Thanks to the hashtags associated with it, a video can quickly become viral and end up on the main news feed of the platform,  thus allowing it to reach the very many users of this application.

TikTok in numbers: 

  • 66% of platform users are under 30 and 41% are between 16 and 24;
  • 90% of users use the platform every day;
  • The app is available in 155 countries;
  • To date, only 4% of marketers use it

Due to its distinct nature, TikTok offers new opportunities for brands to stand out from the competition, especially since there are currently few active commercial players on its platform. However, before embarking on this application, it is important to ask yourself if the type of content published there is a good match for your positioning and if the characteristics of its users correspond to those of your audiences. For example, TikTok is a platform of choice for brands such as Pepsi, Maybelline, or Clean&Clear.


Currently, advertising on TikTok is only available in certain regions of the world. In Canada, advertisers must obtain authorization from a representative to access it. If you are eligible, several display formats will be made available to you:  brand take-over ,  hashtag challenge ,  branded effects  or native advertising. 

The brand take-over  allows advertisers to display when the user opens the application. It is a tactic that is primarily aimed at increasing brand awareness. The example below shows the  brand take-over  of the Too Faced brand. According to TikTok, this advertisement generated excellent results, with an 18% click-through rate on the ad. 

It is also possible to launch a  hashtag challenge  by selecting a specific hashtag, at a cost of $150,000 for a period of 6 days.

For nearly a week, TikTok users are invited to post a video of their own on a very specific theme by associating the hashtag promoted by the advertiser. The challenge can go viral and generate a lot of engagement and excitement around the hashtag in question. 

To ensure the success of a  hashtag challenge , the smartest tactic is to promote it using a combination of several display formats offered on TikTok. For example, case studies have demonstrated that the parallel implementation of a  brand take-over  exponentially increases the effectiveness and performance of a  hashtag challenge . This advertising format also generates an excellent click-through rate, in addition to stimulating the growth of the number of subscribers on the advertisers' page, which is obviously beneficial for organic content initiatives.   

That said, it's important to tread carefully when using this advertising tactic, since letting users express themselves freely by associating with your branded hashtag can be risky. The content they will post and their participation is obviously out of your control. It is therefore, in a way, throwing yourself into the void, but if it can reassure you, the result of such a strategy is more often than not positive. 

One case of a  hashtag challenge  that has worked well is Chipotle's #GuacChallenge. The hashtag was intended to promote the free guacamole offer and generated exceptional engagement. In short, an excellent blow for the notoriety of this American fast food chain.

Another advertising option is the  branded effect  ( also called  branded lense or branded filter) , similar to the one found on SnapChat, thanks to which the user can add effects promoted by a brand to a video. Once again, Chipotle is a good example of the success that can be achieved by employing such a tactic.

Finally, TikTok offers the possibility for advertisers to do  native advertising . The cost per thousand impressions is around $10, quite a high price when compared to Instagram, which averages $8, but allows you to post on this platform with a smaller budget than a hashtag challenge. However, this option remains attractive for a brand wishing to target consumers at the consideration stage, when they are considering making a purchase. This tactic is also a good gateway to the platform to establish your presence there. That said, you shouldn't expect a level of excitement such as that generated by a  take-over  or a hashtag  challenge . 


Sometimes hired to boost the promotion of a  hashtag challenge,  sometimes to praise the benefits of a product, influencers are already very active on TikTok. Below, we see  @LaurenGray  – the personality with the most followers on the platform – taking part in  the Chipotle hashtag challenge  #GuacDance.

Also, unlike the advertising strategies mentioned above, which are not yet offered everywhere around the world, the partnerships concluded with influencers are for their part without geographical constraints, thus allowing you to extend even more the field of action of a campaign.

If your brand is active on TikTok, consider building a strategy using influencers. This will allow you to shine with Generation Z, since  studies show   that they trust personalities more than brands present on social networks.


Advertising has its limits, it is important to plan the publication of organic content in order to position your brand well on the platform. 

As demonstrated by the #DollyPartonChallenge, in which several well-known personalities posted 4 profile photos which they then associated with LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram or Tinder depending on the image they would like to project there, your content strategy shouldn't be the same on every platform. On TikTok, the goal is to produce  highly authentic content that is less structured than for more traditional branded content. The principle is simple: if the relationship proposed by a brand does not seem sincere, the new generations do not want it. 

The strategy put forward by @GymShark is an excellent example of how a brand can position itself advantageously on this platform. The brand produces playful training content in which it highlights its clothing collection. This is content with a more humorous and authentic content than that appearing on their more aspirational Instagram account. 

Need advice on joining Generation Z? We've demystified it all for you here .


Will the arrival of Tik Tok influence your social media strategies? Not necessarily. However, it is essential to position oneself adequately and differently on each of the networks by showing adaptation. The key to success is to treat all social networks as an ecosystem, where content is interrelated, but where each platform plays a very specific role. 

Are you ready to play the sincerity card to join the new generations? Be forward-thinking and adapt your digital strategy now. Whether it's through ads, partnerships with influencers, or through organic content creation, properly positioning your brand on Tik Tok will set you apart from the competition, as well as increase reach and effectiveness. of your marketing campaigns. 

Finally,  joining Generation Z  on a platform they commonly use by showing a clever mix of spontaneity, humor and sincerity will allow you to enter into a relationship with them on new bases, without resorting to traditional advertising; a golden opportunity to get closer to it and to weave with it bonds imbued with the authenticity that it seeks.