Even as most marketers were engrossed with engaging Millennials that were young, affluent, and hungry for new products and services, the marketing potential of Gen Z made itself apparent and TikTok emerged as the social network of choice by many brands, including the likes of Washington Post and Warner. According to Forbes, Gen Z comprises those born between 1997 and 2015 and has an estimated purchasing power of $143 million. However, cracking the TikTok code has not proved to be easy for most marketers, and it is common for them to make mistakes that take the steam out of their campaigns. A few of the top mistakes that brands should be alert about:
The users of TikTok, being extremely discerning, need a diet of fresh content, and unless marketers can do that, they are perceived to be lazy and annoying. Since repurposed content is easily recognized for what it is, old content dressed up as new leads to user fatigue and is, therefore, to be completely avoided by marketers on TikTok. Marketers should be aware that the TikTok algorithm flags repurposed content as low-quality, unlike Instagram, which seems to love it. It is apparent that the cultures of TikTok and Instagram, are quite different and marketers need to be sensitive to it.
Pushing Products Too Much
Many marketers who report disappointing results after executing a marketing campaign are often at a loss regarding the reasons why. Most experts believe that the majority of Gen Y prefers to enjoy an experience over a product. Being pushy with your product features and benefits can turn off these customers as they have an inbuilt mistrust of businesses and their products and prefer to rely on the experience. Focusing on the lifestyle benefits that your products and services can deliver will encourage them to experience it first-hand. Marketers can buy TikTok fans to get to a critical mass that makes marketing initiatives worthwhile.
Being Too Serious About Yourself
It is the culture of TikTok that differentiates it sharply from all other social media networks. Rather than imitating the convention by almost all other social platforms of content that is perfectly polished and curated, TikTok’s appeal is largely derived from its bias towards authenticity and natural self-expression. It has propelled its success in the creation of a safe space where users can feel free to experiment with their creativity and originality. Brand managers need to know that taking yourself too seriously can be disastrous for your marketing campaigns. Marketers tasked to sell products can, therefore, find it difficult, to be frank. A good way of beating this is to use content created in a comedic style.
Marketers accustomed to engaging their target audiences on other social media platforms need to be able to come to terms with the significantly different culture and expectations of TikTok users. Users of TikTok favor authentic content that entertains above everything else. Brands that are intent on building a community of loyal followers on TikTok will have to avoid common mistakes and create fun content.