Courage and creativity come first on TikTok

Selina Spannagel

Head of Social Media Marketing

“Don't Make Ads, Make TikToks” – Not only does the platform itself advertise with this slogan, we also find a lot of truth in it. On no other social media platform is it as important to produce channel-appropriate and specific advertising material as it is on TikTok. How does the current social media high flyer stand out, and why do you need to be more creative than elsewhere? Read our recommendations on how to successfully advertise on TikTok with authentic and appropriate content.

Anyone who thinks that TikTok is mainly widespread in China or the USA and has little relevance here is way off the mark. TikTok is becoming an increasingly important platform, not only worldwide, but also in Switzerland. It now has over 1.5 million monthly active users in this country, most of whom are very young: 66 percent are between 13 and 24 years old. 

TikTok is the social medium of Generation Z. In addition, users spend a lot of time on the app, an average of 54 minutes per day; on Instagram it's 32 minutes. One of the reasons for this is the powerful and very fast-learning algorithm, which continuously delivers adapted relevant content and thus promotes dwell time. Unlike other networks, the content is usually more playful and dynamic. For companies, this means a lot of freedom, but also a lot to consider if you want to be active on the platform. The question of the target group remains central: Who do I address on TikTok with my brand in the most creative way possible, and how do I do that in the most targeted way possible?  

The platform is recommended for all brands or industries that want to adequately address even the youngest target group. TikTok is suitable for achieving branding goals as well as for increasing relevant traffic to online stores. Recently, TikTok has also been catching up powerfully with regard to the entire topic of e-commerce and scores with exciting in-app shopping features. 

Our tips for a successful presence on TikTok:


Don’t copy-paste

Using existing campaigns from other platforms for TikTok will generally not be very successful. The content must be detached from already defined communication measures. The content is too different compared to other social media platforms. Courage and creativity are key here. TikTok has so much influence that it creates its own subcultures and trends. Brands can also leverage this for their own purposes. Interested in an example? Check out the campaign for PostFinance, for which we did the media planning and booking. More inspirations are listed on the TikTok Success Story page. 


Rely on content creators

Collaborating with content creators can be an important part of implementing creative, channel-appropriate campaigns on TikTok. The key here, as with any collaboration, is to approach the content creator with a good briefing and to give them freedom in the creation of content. This leads to authentic content that fits the brand, the platform, and the target group of the content creator. Ahoi Brause, for example, did this particularly well with their campaign.

Brands can easily search for suitable ambassadors in TikTok's Creator Marketplace. The platform is currently not yet available in Switzerland; a possible timeline for a launch in Switzerland could be the end of Q1 or Q2 2021. As long as TikTok's own Creator Marketplace is not yet available, the company's own database or brand ambassadors can also be included. 


Everything revolves around music 

Combining videos with music is the essence of TikTok. Nearly all – 99.9 percent – of all videos contain musical elements. Unlike others, it's the only natural sound-on platform and even influences the way music is discovered and produced today. For brands, this makes it especially important to consider how they can profitably leverage the audio component for their paid placements. TikTok offers a royalty-free music library for commercial use from thousands of songs, styles, and genres through its Commercial Music Library. If songs are used that cannot be found in the library, the addressee of the paid placement is responsible for copyright clearance and use. 


Use formats offered by TikTok in Switzerland

Since fall of 2020, TikTok's self-service platform also offers the possibility to implement campaigns independently. In Switzerland, there are currently two formats:

  • High-reach, reservation-required formats such as Top View or OneDay Max. 
  • In-feed placements, which can be booked in the Self Service Auction Platform.

Our tip: Prices for formats requiring reservations will rise significantly from the second quarter onward. Therefore, benefit from the lower prices in the first quarter. 

The current reservation-required formats such as TopView or OneDay make it possible to reach your target group in a cost-effective and targeted manner. It still remains important for success that the content and advertising media used fit your brand, but also fit the TikTok platform. 

TikTok offers a lot of potential to appeal to Generation Z. If the channel fits your brand and the users fit your target group, there is no way around including TikTok in your media mix.

Looking for advice on your social media measures?