TikTok for Business — quick guide for 2024

GrowCategory
20 min read
Dan Hughes

The one constant you can count on with social media is that it’s always changing. Just when you think one platform has managed to monopolise the space, another comes along and the landscape shifts. 

TikTok is now one of the most popular and powerful social media platforms on the planet.  

Australians under the age of 24 use TikTok the most.

 

Here, we’ll explain the steps to using TikTok for Business, plus some pro marketing tips. 

  1. Create a TikTok Business account
  2. Fill out your profile
  3. Make a TikTok plan
  4. Shoot original videos
  5. Try user-generated content
  6. Get influential
  7. Boost views with ads
  8. See how you’re doing

Before we dive in, let’s consider why TikTok is so important right now. 

Why is TikTok for Business marketing so important? 

As a video-based social media platform, TikTok gets lots of engagement. 

tiktok social media trend

If you produce the right kind of videos, you will: 

  • Connect with more potential customers 
  • Encourage more people to buy your products or services 
  • Keep current customer coming back 

To put the potential of TikTok into perspective, here are some stats and insights to keep in mind: 

  • Due to its rising popularity and appeal among younger people, TikTok is now available to download in over 150 countries
  • To date, TikTok has been installed on mobile devices around 800 million times
  • Videos created on TikTok earn 17 billion average views on a monthly basis
  • Since COVID-19, TikTok app downloads have increased and more Instagram influencers have migrated to the platform (but, more on that later)

As a small business owner, the time to strike is now. 

Now that you know why TikTok is good for business, let’s look at practical ways you can use it to get more customers.

Related: The absolute beginner’s guide to social media marketing

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1. Create a TikTok Business Account

TikTok

First and foremost, to use TikTok for Business you need to set up the right account.

If you’ve already got a personal account, you can make the switch to a business account in a few easy steps. Here’s what to do: 

  • Download the TikTok app and open it 
  • If you don’t have a personal account, create one and set your preferences  
  • Tap the profile icon in the bottom right-hand corner, then tap the Menu button in the top right-hand corner (look for three horizontal lines). Make the big switch to a TikTok business account before choosing the categories relevant to your business. 

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2. Fill out your profile

Once your account is set up, one of the most fundamental parts of using TikTok for Business is optimising your profile for success. 

As the famous Field of Dreams (or Wayne’s World 2) saying goes: “if you build it, they will come.”

To add to that statement — if you build it, well, they will flock. 

To set up your TikTok for Business account in a way that will attract and engage the right visitors, there are key elements to consider. Let’s look at them now. 

Username 

To use TikTok to promote your business effectively, choosing the right username is important.  

When choosing a username for your TikTok account, you should: 

  • Pick a username that is short and punchy (two or three syllables is usually the sweet spot) 
  • Go with words or phrases that represent your business and what it does 
  • Use terms or imagery that make sense for your niche or industry 
  • Add special characters or numbers sparingly to avoid confusion 

Tip: Be sure you know your character limits when choosing a username or writing your TikTok for Business profile. The character limit for usernames is 24 and it’s 80 for bios. 

Your profile image is your chance to catch peoples’ eyes when you pop up in a search — so make sure it’s slick, clear and represents your business. 

Using a headshot is a good idea if you have a personal brand and you’re looking to connect with your audience on a personal level.  

Personal taking a selfie

Make sure your background is clear and de-cluttered so your face bounces off the screen. 

If you want to boost brand awareness, adding a logo to your profile picture will increase your chances of attracting the right people. In both cases, your imagery should be high-resolution and cropped to fit perfectly. 

Tip: Try our easy-to-use logo maker to create the perfect branding for your TikTok business profile. 

TikTok for Business bio 

Your TikTok bio is your opportunity to give users a quick introduction to your brand and what you do that’s different.  

As you only have 80 characters to make your case, think of it as a tagline (such as Billabong’s "Life's better in boardshorts”). 

Your bio should: 

  • Tell potential followers what you do and why they should follow you. 
  • Include a relevant emoji. A sustainable clothing brand might throw a green leaf or tree emoji into the mix. 
  • Have a ‘link in bio’ that takes people to all your digital platforms. 
  • Have a call-to-action that tells people what action to take next.

Related: A beginner’s guide to an awesome brand identity

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3. Make a TikTok plan

The next phase of the TikTok for Business operation is building a solid strategy. This will increase your chances of growing your audience and boosting brand awareness effectively. Let’s explore. 

Understand the TikTok algorithm 

First of all, coming to grips with TikTok’s algorithm will give you the insights you need to craft the right content at the right time and earn the best possible return on investment (ROI) for your efforts. 

An algorithm runs a search term like “Roblox” or “song” through a set of instructions to find related videos in TikTok’s database.

The latest TikTok algorithm has both signal and content ranking factors. If used the right way, these factors will boost the reach of your posts in a big way.  

Tip: Knowing the ‘TikTok lingo’ (the words and terms people commonly use on the platform) will give your videos a greater chance of earning user engagement and getting picked up by the almighty algorithm. 

Related: A step-by-step guide to keyword research 

Identify your target

Another key aspect of TikTok for Business marketing is knowing what kind of people are likely to be interested in your videos.  

As with any other social media or marketing channel, understanding who you’re speaking to and why will help you create content that strikes a chord with the right people. 

Two TikTokers shooting a video

The best way to understand your audience is by creating buyer personas. Buyer personas are basically profiles of your ideal TikTok users. They include essential details such as their: 

  • Age 
  • Education level 
  • Occupation 
  • Aims 
  • Personal interests 

Armed with this information, you can shoot original videos (more on that soon) that will engage, inspire or entertain them while providing a solution to their most pressing problems. 

Know your competition 

Getting to know your competition is just as important as knowing your audience. 

Create a list of your main competitors and spy on their TikTok videos (as well as how their followers interact with it). 

This will not only give you major inspiration for your own video creation efforts — it will also help you spot any potential gaps that you can step in and fill. 

In addition to spying on the competition, you'll also want to keep your eyes peeled and your ears to the ground. 

We know that you’re busy and don’t have time to scroll through TikTok all day. But when you are on the platform, searching for relevant trends will prove an effective use of your time. 

To discover trending videos or content in your niche, you’ll need to search for the right hashtags. 

Nike just did it hashtag painted on a gym wall

Like Instagram, hashtags are the lifeblood of TikTok in terms of visibility. If you tap into the right pocket of the platform, you’ll be able to: 

  • See what your competitors are producing and saying. You can use this as fuel for your creative fire and find ways you can improve on the videos your competitors are publishing. 
  • Connect with prospective customers by leaving comments, engaging with videos and tapping into conversations. 
  • Leverage relevant and well-performing hashtags to help promote your original TikTok content and reach the right audience.

To help you on your quest for trending success, here is a list of 180 trending TikTok hashtags for your use.

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4. Shoot original videos

Speaking of original content, creating your own funny, inspirational or compelling TikTok videos is the best way to stand out on the platform. 

When it comes to creating original TikTok for Business content, you can be as creative as you want to be, as long as your video is three minutes or less. 

Editor's note: Use GoDaddy’s online video editor to make your videos picture perfect.

TikTok for Business video creation top tips  

You can mime to famous sound clips, add music or audio sound effects, and apply images or filters.  

tik toker lgtbiq+

But, to really strike a chord with your audience, you must get your basics right: 

  • Decide on the key message you want to convey. Remember, you only have a limited amount of time to work with (10 minutes is the max), so work with one strong message or concept. 
  • Don’t self-promote or use “salesy” language. If you do, TikTok users will breeze right past you and never look back. Yes, you are a small business promoting your wares, but the best way approach is to inspire, entertain or offer genuine value. 
  • Set your tone from the outset. Before you dream up your concept and hit the record button, you should decide on the tone of your TikTok video. Do you want to be hard-hitting and stoic? Do you want to make people roll on the floor laughing? Do you want to be sarcastic? Or maybe empathetic? Read this post for help in finding your brand “voice.” 
  • If there is a video trend or contest, jump on it. TikTok is chock-full of trending video challenges and contests. Find one in your niche, create videos with unique twists and you will grow your follower base steadily over time. You could even launch a little contest of your own. 
  • Humans connect with stories better than anything else. While you only have three minutes, there’s no reason why you can’t tell an interesting tale in that time. Sketch out a clear-cut beginning, middle and end for your video — make them care!

Boosting the success of your TikTok videos

When using TikTok for Business marketing, creating content that people actually want to see is, well, vital.  

What I mean here is: you should check trending TikTok searches to find out what people are enjoying the most right now. 

When it comes to creating the kind of TikTok content that travels (or maybe even goes viral), there are several avenues you can explore, including: 

  • How-to videos and tutorialsTech influencer shooting an unboxing video
  • Life hack videos 
  • Behind-the-scenes footage 
  • Trending news broadcasts (injected with a little humour, if possible) 
  • Video collaborations with influencers related to your niche 
  • Polls and opinion pieces 
  • Mini three-minute films with a strong stories 
  • Trending dances, routines or challenges

Being consistent with your content helps you to maximise your reach and grow your audience faster.  

Aim to post around one to four times per day to maintain a steady momentum. 

Staying active on the platform will also boost engagement. These are all effective ways to spark clicks and shares: 

  • Regularly responding to comments or feedback 
  • Interacting with your followers 
  • Asking questions to inspire new conversations  

Tip: To maximise your video’s reach, use three to five hashtags, weaving them into your video description naturally. Using one trending or popular hashtag and between two and four slightly more niche ones will give your TikTok for Business marketing content a better chance of coming up in searches.

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5. Try user-generated content

Another effective TikTok marketing tip for small businesses is to shine a little light on user-generated content (UGC). 

Many companies currently employ user-generated content as part of their marketing strategy — and you should, too. After all, social media fans love interacting with the videos of other users. 

One of the best ways you can use UGC to your advantage is to share the videos of people posting videos related to your niche. 

By shining a light on the content of others, you will: 

  • Connect with more people 
  • Improve your engagement levels 
  • Build trust with your audience 

Using this simple TikTok marketing tactic, you will be able to showcase your services and products in a way that is fun and authentic. 

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6. Get influential

Influencer marketing is a powerful social media marketing methods. 

This is where you team up with popular TikTokers in your niche to promote your business. 

Chebbo's Burgers TikTok bun video

Australian brands such as Chebbo’s Burgers, Chefs and Dogs and Lorna Jane have dipped their toes into influencer marketing campaigns through TikTok. 

A shining example of influencer marketing on the platform comes from TikTok itself. 

To promote its addictive, bite-sized video-making capabilities, TikTok teamed up with a mix of celebrity influencers for a "15 seconds of fame" meme-athon. 

Developed to build awareness and improve platform engagement in its earlier days, TikTok asked celebs like Kris Jenner, Charlie Puth and Paris Hilton to create short TikTok video memes using the hashtag #memeathon. Each influencer shared the content via their respective Twitter profiles to extend the campaign's reach. 

The celebrity-based influencer marketing campaign : 

  • Reached 3,173,500 users  
  • Earned an engagement rate of 338,500 
  • Got 26.1 million views for posts with the hashtag #memeathon 

While this was a high-profile influencer marketing campaign, it shows how the right people can help speed your success on the platform. 

Do your research, find smaller influencers making waves in your industry or niche, and reach out to them. Read this post for details on where to find the right influencer.

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7. Increase views with ads

TikTok for Business has an ad platform that is pretty easy to use. If handled correctly, it can offer some serious business-boosting results. 

With a 17.9% reach of all web users aged 18 or over, investing in its paid ads might be a wise marketing choice. 

Getting started with TikTok ads 

While TikTok’s paid advertising is still in its early days compared to the likes of Instagram or Facebook, it can still be a good way to boost your brand awareness and bring shoppers or visitors to your website.  

Here’s how to get started: 

Sign up for a TikTok ads account 

Visit TikTok’s official advertising platform and create an account for your small business.

Once you’re all set up, you can create a paid advertising campaign, setting your:  

  • Objective  
  • Ad placement type   
  • Target demographics (age, location, interests, etc.) to get your ad in front of the right people  

With your campaign details defined, you will be able to set a budget and schedule to ensure your ad reaches the right audience at the right time. 

Follow these best practices 

This how-to guide will help you understand what you need to do to make your TikTok ad as successful as possible. But here are some TikTok advertising best practices that will help you get ahead of the game: 

  • Take time to understand the finer details of how to use TikTok for Business 
  • Use emerging TikTok trends to shape your ad’s themes and stories 
  • Make sure your ad descriptions are clear, concise and punchy 
  • Make sure your visuals are slick and well-edited 
  • Create your ads with a catchy hook and inspire action with a clear-cut call-to-action (CTA) 
  • Add a trending soundtrack or sound bite to give your video ad a wider appeal. 
  • Try a balanced mix of different TikTok ad types—which brings us to our next subject.

Knowing your TikTok ad types will give you plenty of scope for creating compelling content that will attract people to your business (in their droves). 

Here are the main types of TikTok ads you can use to your brand-boosting advantage. 

TopView ads 

Example TikTok ad

TikTok’s TopView ads are typically displayed to your target users once a day. They can skip these ads after three seconds but they include links that can help you drive traffic to your website or landing page. These ads have a 60-second time limit. 

In-Feed ads 

When it comes to TikTok for Business marketing, In-Feed ads are effective because they help you focus on a clear goal and win people over with snappy five to 16-second videos. These ads are served up to users’ feeds based on their personal interests. 

Branded hashtags 

Using well-placed paid branded hashtags will help you improve your TikTok ads and give people a glimpse into what your business is all about. This can help to build trust and engagement.  

Dabble in branded effects 

A lesser-known form of paid TikTok advertising, branded effects are a powerful promotional tool. Media effects like customised logos, stickers, filters, and sound bites can bring your TikTok marketing campaigns to life in a way that is fun, playful and memorable. 

Brand Takeover ad 

These high-budget ads come in at around $30,000 per day. But, if you’ve got money, Brand Takeover ads will allow you to dominate a whole TikTok category for a full day with full-screen video content. 

Editor’s note: Use GoDaddy Studio to design your own business logo as well as scroll-stopping ads for TikTok and other social media.

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8. See how you’re doing

TikTok analytics dashboard

To be really successful with TikTok marketing, you’ll want to get analytical. TikTok has its very own in-built analytical platform that will give you insight into how your videos are performing. 

TikTok Analytics are visual performance insights to help you take any guesswork out of your content strategy 

To see your TikTok Analytics: 

  1. Tap on the three vertical lines located in the top right corner and click Creator ToolsTap the profile icon in the bottom right-hand corner of your mobile screen
  2. Tap on Analytics and view your content engagement stats

Once you’re there, you can check: 

  • How many followers you’ve gained over a set time 
  • How many video views you’ve had by geographic location 
  • Viewer demographics 

With this priceless info, you will quickly come to know the type of videos that resonate with your audience the most.  

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TikTok Business tips 

Finally, we move on to our bonus TikTok for Business marketing tips. Use these savvy ideas to gain an edge on your competition: 

  • Create a mini-series related to your brand niche 
  • Try live TikTok broadcasts and content 
  • Lead with a tone of voice and style that is authentic and true to your brand 
  • Learn from your mistakes and focus on the type of content that gets clicks and shares 
  • Use your TikTok Analytics tools to discover the best times to post 

Extra tip: Studies suggest tha best days to post on TikTok are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The best times to post on TikTok are around 6 am to 10 am and 7 pm to 11 pm. 

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Final thoughts on TikTok 

“Build it, and they will come” only works in the movies.  

According to author Seth Godin, social media is more “build it, nurture it, engage them, and they may come and stay.”  

 

In these uncertain times, people are turning to video content more than ever for entertainment, distraction or personal connection. 

By striking while the iron is hot, you can reach a whole new audience and grow your small business in ways you never thought possible. 

When done well, TikTok marketing can be cost-effective, powerful, and (if you have the time) fun to do. 

Follow our TikTok for small business marketing tips and you’ll be on your way to social media domination in your space. 

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Using TikTok for Business FAQs 

Should businesses use TikTok? 

If your target market is people under 24, yes. Using TikTok for business marketing should be a core tactic for any business that serves Gen Z. With one 8.5 million Australian active users, the right approach can accelerate your growth and boost your brand awareness. 

Is TikTok for Business free? 

TikTok for Business accounts are free and provide access to creator tools as well as useful stats and engagement analytics. You can set up your TikTok profile from scratch or switch your existing profile from a regular account to a business account with a few swift taps. 

How should a business use TikTok? 

Getting started with TikTok for business is a step-by-step process.  

  1. Create a TikTok Business account 
  2. Optimise your profile 
  3. Build a TikTok strategy 
  4. Create original videos 
  5. Consider featuring user-generated content 
  6. Get influential 
  7. Take advantage of ads 
  8. Use analytics and other tracking tools

By consistently creating head-turning content, you will grow your follower base and boost your brand awareness.  

Should I have a separate TikTok for my business? 

If you’d like to post regular content for your friends, family or personal follower base and grow your business, having two separate accounts is a good idea.  

But, if you’re not precious about posting separate personal content, switching to a business account is a good idea because you will already have an engaged follower base you can build on. 

Are TikTok Ads worth it? 

In a nutshell, yes — assuming your target market is Gen Z. As one of the world’s most popular and engaging platforms, TikTok’s advertising will offer you an excellent return on investment (ROI) if you get your content and targeting efforts right.  

By taking a consistent approach to your ads, you can expand your brand reach and boost your profits. 

What are the benefits of TikTok for Business? 

There are many brand-boosting benefits of using TikTok for Business. 

In addition to reaching a group of rabid fans, you can also drive more social media conversions and sales.  

Working with TikTok for Business will also bring your brand to life and give you a fun, interesting way to advertise your products, services and unique selling points. 

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