How to Leverage TikTok Influencer Marketing in 2022 for Your Brand

Rachel Smith
Communications Executive
January 11, 2022
January 10, 2022
12
min read

The key to successful online marketing is targeting the right audience. One way to quickly reach your target audience on social media is by leveraging influencer marketing. And, influencer marketing on TikTok has proven to work well for brands due to the high engagement level of the users and the audience base.

TikTok is the fastest-growing social media platform offering a plethora of TikTok influencer marketing opportunities for you to explore. It is the most downloaded app globally, with more than a billion users. Today, TikTok might not have the same number of daily users as Instagram or Facebook, but its engagement and brand loyalty are something brands can count on. Since its launch in 2018, it has grown as an incredible platform for consumers, creators, and brands alike.

This comprehensive guide will help you understand TikTok influencer marketing in greater detail so you can leverage it to your advantage, boost your brand's visibility, and grow a loyal following. So, let's get started.

What is TikTok?

TikTok is a social video platform where users can create, upload, and share videos of up to 3 minutes. The videos often feature DIYs, recipes, pranks, comedy acts, lip-syncing, challenges, and dancing. The application allows users to add visual effects, audio, and filters, allowing them to get creative.


How Does TikTok Work?

TikTok users create short-form video content with a TikTok account using the app features such as filters, visual effects, and music. The aim is to gain viewer attention within the first few seconds. Like Instagram and Twitter, the TikTok platform is guided by hashtags and trending posts that allow users to find content.


Who are the Main TikTok Users?

TikTok is a youth-oriented platform – usually used by millennials and Gen Z. People between the age of 16 and 24 make up 41% of the total user base. It makes the platform perfect when you want to target a younger population.


What Types of Content Do Well on TikTok?

Like YouTube, TikTok is the video-sharing platform, but unlike YouTube, the videos shared on TikTok are short and filmed in a vertical format – the way people hold their phones. Pretty much any type of short-form videos works well on TikTok, such as:

  • Home-made music videos
  • Comedic videos
  • Cringe videos
  • Fashion and beauty tips
  • Short clips of sports action
  • Cooking demonstrations
  • Dance challenges


Why TikTok Makes for an Ideal Platform for Influencer Marketing?

According to a study by eMarketer, by the end of 2021, TikTok will have more Gen Z users than Instagram, and by the end of 2023, TikTok will have more US users than Snapchat. It would be ideal for any brand to create its TikTok presence if the target audience is under 25.

TikTok is a unique platform with an intelligent algorithm that can show the right type of content to the right type of people. It is mobile-friendly and makes user-generated content viral in no time.

Some of the reasons Why TikTok Makes for an Ideal Platform for Influencer Marketing are:

  • Vast global presence (users spread across 150 countries)
  • Increases brand awareness quickly
  • Help move prospects further down the sales funnel, converting your leads into customers
  • Enable brands to get to know their audience better, build lasting relationships and engage in relevant conversations
  • A perfect platform to test out different types of content in front of a widely accepting audience

With the right TikTok influencers, brands can target people in their specific niche to grow their business.

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How to Get Started with TikTok Influencer Marketing Campaign & What to Keep in Mind?

Spend some time on the platform. Familiarity with its functioning, its users and the possible engagement it can generate for the brand are crucial in the beginning.

Next, follow these steps before getting started:

  1. Know Your Audience
    • Whom do you want your products to be bought by?
    • Who will love your content and engage with your brand?
    • Who is more likely to become your customer?

    Next, try to get a deep understanding of your target audience. You can find out:

    • Their goals, common traits, challenges, and pain points
    • The brands they engage with
    • The basic demographics
    • The types of influencers they follow
    • How you can help solve their specific problem
  2. Define Your Goals
  3. What do you want to achieve with TikTok influencer marketing? Do you want to build brand awareness, generate sales, or drive traffic to your website? Be clear about your goals because it impacts influencer marketing strategies.

  4. Understand Your Sales Funnel
  5. Your marketing funnel is critical for building your influencer outreach strategy and campaigns. The sales funnel generally include these stages:

    • Awareness: Work with macro or mega-influencers to attract a target audience and introduce your brand. 
    • Consideration: After attracting your target audience, you need to engage them. You may want to narrow down your audience to genuine buyers interested in what you have to offer. You can consider working with a mid-tier influencer in this stage. 
    • Decision: In the third stage, involve the customers who have already been with you in the first two stages. They know you and your products/services. All you need to do is convince them to take action. For decision-stage campaigns, look for micro or nano-influencers with niche audiences.
  6. Take Your Budget Into Consideration
  7. The budget plays an important role in determining the type of influencer you work with and the campaigns you run. Some factors that influence the prices of TikTok influencers include: 

    • The goal and expectation of your campaign
    • Influencer reach and engagement rate
    • Amount of work the influencers need to put in your campaign 
    • The number and types of posts
    • Ad placement
    • Agency fees (if applicable)

    On a broader level, TikTok influencers charge anything between $5 to $10,000 per post.

  8. Choose Your Influencers Carefully
  9. When choosing the right influencers for your marketing campaigns, make sure of the following: 

    • The influencer's content directly or indirectly correlates with your niche or business.
    • The influencer's content and followers align with your brand and values.
    • The influencer's content generates high engagement consistently.
    • Your target audience trusts the influencer.
    • The influencer is a thought leader in your industry.

How to Find Influencers on TikTok? 

The top three ways to ensure that you are partnering with the right TikTok influencers include: 

  1. Discovery- On the discovery page of TikTok, enter niche-specific keywords or industry trends to find influencers that are a good fit. Also, use hashtags and suggested videos and accounts. 
  2. Google Search- Google search is the apt place to look for relevant TikTok influencers. Enter "your niche+TikTok influencers" in the search and see the results. 
  3. Influencer Marketing Platforms- Use a platform built specifically to connect your business with relevant influencers. Affable.ai is a TikTok influencer marketing platform that vets influencers according to the metrics such as views, followers, likes, and engagement rates. 

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How to Build a TikTok Influencer Marketing Strategy?

An impactful TikTok influencer marketing strategy needs to have essential elements ensuring the brand message gets to the right people and makes the right impact. 

When you partner with TikTok influencers, try to control every aspect of the campaign. If you have chosen the right TikTok influencer for your brand, they know what they need to do. The best thing you can do is give them the creative freedom they need to create a splash. 

Here's what you can do to build a successful TikTok influencer marketing campaign: 

  1. Determine TikTok Campaign Goals
  2. What is the end goal of the brand campaign- drive sales, encourage users to download the app, or sign up for a newsletter/trial? Have clarity about which KPIs you need to use to measure the outcome. Definite goals make it easier to measure the ROI of the campaign and the success of the overall strategy.

  3. Get in the Right Niche
  4. If you know what goal you plan to achieve on TikTok and who to talk to, it means that you know what type of influencer you need to partner with. The ideal influencer will be well-associated with your industry and have a loyal fan following of your ideal buyers.

  5. Research & Vet TikTok Influencers
  6. Be careful while researching and thorough while vetting TikTok influencers. Don't partner with influencers solely based on their number of followers. Do your due diligence when finding TikTok influencers to ensure they are a good fit. Some things you need to look out for include:

    • Find out whether they deliver quality content and have a positive engagement. 
    • Determine whether their audience is your potential customers. 
    • Figure out whether their values and interests match your brand’s.
  7. Get Your Content Right
  8. Content should be authentic and relevant to your niche and target audience. Some of the types of content to consider for TikTok include:

    • Challenges
    • Videos based on popular hashtags
    • Tutorials
    • Dances
    • Voiceovers
    • Lip-syncing
    • Live videos
    • Paid ads
    • Freeze-frame videos
    • In-feed native videos
    • Shoppable ads
    • Brand takeover ads
    • Marketing ads
  9. Content Production and Execution
  10. After figuring out the type of content required, create something engaging that fits your niche perfectly. When you work with influencers, the goal is to create content that people want to watch. The brand association is an incentive. Some things to remember when creating content for TikTok include:

    • High-quality content
    • Edit before you post
    • Include the right hashtags to create a snowball effect, bringing more people on board, making it go viral
    • Make content shareable and shareworthy
    • Trust content creators and their expertise
    • Allow influencers to express creativity
  11. Ensure TikTok Influencer Sponsorships Don't Violate Any Rules
  12. There should be no violation of the social media sponsored ads while executing the TikTok influencer marketing strategy. Be aware of these rules to avoid costly consequences and legal mess.

  13. Measure Important Metrics
  14. It's futile to run a campaign and not monitor its performance. Know the general benchmarks of successful campaigns. Measure TikTok KPI metrics such as engagement rate, profile views, followers, likes, shares, and comments.

  15. Keep Optimizing
  16. Constantly test and optimize your TikTok influencer marketing strategy. Adjust the posts and ads to perform better if your campaign does not meet the standard benchmarks of a strong performance.

  17. Consider TikTok Advertising Formats
  18. Make the most out of TikTok by pairing your TikTok influencer marketing strategy with TikTok advertising tactics. It will boost your brand presence and overall TikTok marketing efforts.

Ways to Advertise on TikTok

The TikTok marketing ecosystem is relatively new, yet it is potentially engaging and has gained a loyal following much quicker than most other social media platforms. Brands have been exploring their advertising opportunities and executed their TikTok marketing strategies in several ways, including: 


  1. TikTok Influencer Marketing Ads: TikTok influencer marketing ads enable you to partner with TikTok creators and share sponsored content with their audience. They include: 

  2. In-feed ads / In-feed Native Videos: In-feed ads are in-feed videos that run on three models: CPM (cost per impression), CPC (cost per click), and CPV (cost per 6-second view). You can create a custom audience based on age, gender, and geo-location. You also have an option of blacklisting or whitelisting profiles. Generally, in-feed ads come at a $10 cost-per-impression, and the minimum campaign spend is $6,000. 

  3. TikTok Hashtag Challenge Ads: TikTok hashtag challenge ads promote branded hashtags to encourage users to participate in the challenge. They appear as a banner on the discover page, redirecting the users to an instruction page for participating in the challenge. Branded hashtag challenge guarantees more impressions than a regular ad without the hashtag. 

  4. Brand Take Over Ads: Brand takeover ads are for several brand categories, including fashion, fitness, food, etc. However, TikTok allows only one brand to take over a category for a day. So, if you have to take over a brand, it may cost you $50,000 per day with 5 million impressions guaranteed. Ads are displayed when the user opens the app. It means the brand gets immediate attention, prompting the users to click on the CTA. If the users don't want to take any action, they can skip the ad.

  5. TikTok Shoppable Ads: The Hashtag Challenge Plus is TikTok's new ad format with a shoppable component. You can sponsor hashtags to create a dedicated experience for the target audience within the platform. When users land on the hashtag challenge page, they get two options: click on the Videos or Explore tab. The Videos tab introduces users to a series of hashtagged-video content, prompting users to submit their tagged content. When users click the Explore section, it leads them to a page where brands display their products to sift through and buy. 

  6. Branded Stickers: Branded TikTok stickers are another way to attract and engage your audience by providing them with an interactive experience. 

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Things to Consider when Making a Brief for TikTok Influencers

Consider these tips when writing a brief for TikTok influencers:

  • TikTok influencers have their style and voice. If you restrict their freedom, the sponsored content fails to resonate with their audience.
  • Share your campaign's main goal and the message you want to send across to your audience. Allow influencers to interpret this how they see fit. 
  • Mention that your brand has the right to repurpose the content shared across TikTok and other platforms.
  • Specify your deliverables and your expectations. 

Examples of Influencer Marketing on TikTok 

Below are some great examples of big brands that have realized the potential of TikTok in helping them reach their target audiences.

  1. Sony Music
  2. Sony Music ran a TikTok influencer marketing campaign across Italy, Spain, and Argentina to promote the Nicky Jam x Sch song, Atrévete. The music company collaborated with twelve influencers to create 12 TikTok videos. With these influencers, the campaign reached out to 8 million engaged users, an average engagement rate of 6%, 1.2 million likes, and 10,300 user-generated videos.

    Sony Music ran another TikTok campaign for the US band, AJR Brothers. They partnered with TikTok duo Max and Harvey for this campaign. The campaign created a challenge for users to meet the band during their London show. First, Max and Harvey uploaded an introduction video explaining the challenge. Then, they used the song 100 Bad days in a funny video that collected 230,000 views and 40,000 likes.

  3. Calvin Klein
  4. With word of shutting down in 2018, Calvin Klein faced a downfall until the brand introduced its new spring TikTok campaign in 2019. The first video of the campaign themed #mycalvins featured model Kendall Jenner, actor Noah Centineo, singer Shawn Mendes, and musician A$AP Rocky, who promoted clothes and underwear.

    This campaign was the first of any fashion brand on TikTok and a brilliant example of connecting with the younger target audience. Catchy choreography with meaningful storytelling and impactful product placement was at the heart of the strategy. Within 24 hours of its launch, the #MyCalvins TikTok campaign became Calvin Klein’s most viewed digital marketing campaign. It received 10 times more engagement than the TikTok campaign Calvin Klein had done with Justin Bieber in 2015 spring.

  5. Red Bull
  6. Red Bull's influencer marketing campaigns are trendy and innovative. And, Red Bull’s TikTok marketing examples are usually low-sell influencer marketing strategies. It means Red Bull’s ads make no apparent effort to sell its product or highlight product features. One of Red Bull’s recent TikTok influencer marketing partnerships with user Keeoh is a perfect example of this.

    Keeoh shared a video on TikTok claiming to perform a magic trick with Red Bull, where he pours Red Bull into a travel mug. He then upturns the mug to show it is empty. Where has the drink gone? Just then, one of Keeoh’s friends pops up from behind the table. It seemed from the video that Keeoh had been pouring Red Bull directly into his friend’s mouth. It was a comedy video, and Red Bull was just a prop here.

    This campaign is an example of Red Bull following an existing trend of trick videos of somebody pouring a drink into something other than what the audience expects. What a smart way to leverage TikTok trends without directly advertising a product!

TikTok is a terrific platform - we know that now. We also know that TikTok influencer marketing campaigns will work beautifully for brands that want to reach a younger audience. But, what we should keep in mind is that learning about the platform, knowing its how-to's to truly understand that true potential and maximizing the ROI of your TikTok influencer marketing campaigns is crucial. 

Also, with influencer marketing becoming mainstream for most brands in all niches, you can leverage the expertise of influencer marketing platforms like Affable.ai to run successful influencer marketing campaigns. Affable.ai takes care of everything for you – from finding the right influencers for your campaigns to reaching out to multiple influencers simultaneously, managing various campaigns, tracking results and metrics to help you analyze – it does it all. Take it for a spin yourself with a free demo, and see what a difference it can make for your brand!

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