Spyder's Blog
September 30, 2022
Min Read

TikTok Ads

Over the last few years TikTok has become a social media phenomenon with its skyrocketing popularity and over a billion users, making it the sixth largest social media platform in the world. TikTok is a platform for creating, sharing, and discovering short videos. Here you can find anything from dancing and singing videos to tutorials and the latest trends. This means that this service can be a good opportunity to advertise services and products, promote ideas, and share your content. What are TikTok ads, how to use them, and does TikTok suit your business? Let’s dive into the world of TikTok opportunities and find out.

What Is TikTok and Who Uses TikTok?

TikTok is a social media platform, a streaming and sharing app for short videos from fifteen seconds to ten minutes. This is a place where people can express themselves, set trends, and become a part of a huge community. Videos from this platform can be found on other social media websites as well.

The main audience of TikTok is young people between the ages of 16-29, making up about 60% of users. People engage in different challenges and create something new, that’s why this app is important for the youth. And though TikTok is most popular among young people, its impact on anyone’s daily social media browsing is undoubted.

Does TikTok Have Ads? Are TikTok Ads for All Businesses?

TikTok, as all the other social media platforms nowadays, has ads that appear in users’ feeds in various formats. With the focus on the quality videos, TikTok can be a great marketing tool and an opportunity to engage the target audience in the best way possible. Advertising nowadays is all about creativity and visuals, and this social media platform gives you just that.

TikTok is a good place for marketing businesses. But before making the decision to advertise on TikTok, you need to think over some aspects.

1. If your target audience is on TikTok. This platform is known for its young and creative community, though it is becoming more popular with people of different age groups. And again, TikTok videos spread to other platforms quite quickly.

2. If TikTok advertising is suitable for your budget. There is a minimum of $500 that you are required to spend for a campaign. And though it may be worth it, it does not fit all the businesses.

3. If it's suitable for your niche. This app may not serve as an ideal place to advertise for all the industries.

Why Should Businesses Use TikTok Advertising?

At first TikTok may seem like just another social media platform fitted to only entertain, but don’t let the first impression trick you. Though entertainment is one of its main focuses, this app has many reasons to become one of the main advertising tools.

1. Audience. Though the main TikTok users are the youth, nowadays it’s not limited to just Gen Z or Millennials, more and more people of different ages get acquainted with this app and become its regular users.

2. User engagement. This app may be the best place to engage your audience. TikTok provides different formats for businesses to ensure that the message reaches the viewers and makes them react and take action. In-Feed Ads, TopView, Branded Effects, and more, every ad solution is aimed at drawing attention of a user and encourages engagement. As an example, you can create a promoting video with a specific sound so that other people can use it to make their own videos and share them with everyone else. Videos with catchy songs and sounds become viral very quickly.

3. International outreach. The main advantage of TikTok is that it’s popular and has users from around the world. This may help your business gain new audiences and become recognized in different parts of the world. TikTok is available in 154 countries in 75 languages. It’s worth mentioning that 92% of users worldwide turn to action after watching a TikTok video.

4. Community and collaboration. Creativity in advertising can take you anywhere, and TikTok is the platform for it. It’s quite easy for different businesses to be seen here and gain followers, create their own communities of people with the same interests and ideas. Collaboration with the right influencers can help to reach out to new audiences and expand your community of followers and clients.

5. Targeting. With time, TikTok has improved its targeting abilities. Now you can choose age, location, interests, and several other criteria to target the audience that you want to attract.

6. Measurement tools. TikTok has some measurement tools aimed to help marketers estimate the efficiency of an ad campaign and monitor conversion and impressions. You can do all the necessary research and be sure that your ad is seen.

These aspects of TikTok advertising can help you make the decision on whether it is the right place for your advertising campaign. TikTok has many beneficial factors that make it a good instrument of branding and marketing in the modern world.

TikTok Advertising Stats

Talking about TikTok statistics, we can once again acknowledge the popularity of this app. TikTok has been downloaded 3 billion times and has 1 billion active worldwide users monthly. The largest TikTok audiences are in the USA and Middle Eastern and Asian countries.

Almost half of TikTok audience is young people aged 18 to 24, making around 43% of users. Women of this age category make up almost 25% of the TikTok audience. If your target audience is young women, TikTok might be the perfect place for your business.

Important statistics for marketers based on recent research:

• TikTok’s TopView ads are more popular among TikTok users

• More than 60% of successful TikTok ads have their message communicated straight away, hooking the audience immediately

• 88% of TikTok users say that music is the central part of a video ad

• Popular songs make 68% of all the viewers remember the brands better

• 55% of the TikTok audience use the platform to research brands and products

This information can be useful for your next TikTok ad campaign.

Which Brands Should Use TikTok Advertising?

TikTok video format implies that brands can show their product in action, demonstrate it from different angles, all its functions, how it’s applied, etc. Some services are impossible or difficult to display and illustrate fully, that’s why TikTok may not be suitable for many B2B companies. B2C brands, on the other hand, can use the TikTok ad solutions to the full extent, creating their advertising campaigns using TikTok engagement as their branding tool.

Types of TikTok Ads

Since TikTok ads became popular among marketers, the app has developed several advertising types for businesses that can be used for different purposes and achieve different goals. It can be useful to figure them out before applying in your ad campaign.

• In-Feed Ads

This is the type of TikTok ad that blends into the viewers’ feed and becomes a part of their daily scrolling. For In-Feed ads you create a video that then appears on the “For You” page of a TikTok user. This way, your advertisement is not so interrupting. Moreover, a viewer can interact with your video by liking, sharing, or commenting under it, and with your brand page by starting to follow it. In-Feed ads can also feature call-to-actions, this way you can invite your future customers to download your app, purchase your product, visit your website, etc.

• TopView Ads

As previously stated, this TikTok ad type may be the most popular one among viewers. This is an In-Feed ad that appears on screen when a TikTok user opens the app, the first ad that they see. TopView ads can be up to 60 seconds long with auto-play and sound. As well as in an In-Feed ad, TopView can have multiple CTA’s, it engages viewers with likes, shares, and comments.

• Branded Effects

TikTok is famous for its immense library of effects. And this can work in your favor if you want to raise brand awareness. TikTok gives brands the opportunity to create their own 2D, 3D, or AR images that can be used as stickers, filters, etc. You can make your own game where a user can find out which character, type of food, makeup item, or anything brand-specific they are. Branded Effects are perfect for audience engagement, the more people use your filter, the more people discover your brand.

• Branded Hashtags

Branded Hashtags is another good option to engage your audience. If you want more people to find out about you, create a brand-related hashtag that TikTok creators and viewers can use in their videos. You can start a new challenge, trend, meme and use this hashtag so that people who want to participate or share your idea can refer to it on their page, as the TikTok community loves viral activities.

TikTok offers exclusive hashtags which means that no other brand will be able to use your hashtag to promote their product. However, this type of TikTok advertising has its price with the reported cost being around $150,000 for a six-day hashtag challenge.

• Brand Takeovers

TikTok Brand Takeovers may include In-Feed ads, TopView ads, and Branded Hashtags. This ad type is probably the most full-scale you can get on TikTok as your brand gets the chance to take over the app with your advertisements for a whole day. Brand Takeover easily engages the audience as it has an aspect of challenge in it as well as makes people feel as a part of a community around your brand. Though this is another pricey ad type with the estimated cost of around $50,000 per day.

All the TikTok ad types are certain to attract viewers and make them participate in your ad campaign. And TikTok Ads Manager is a tool that helps brands to create perfect videos, target the right audience, and make TikTok advertising easy.

How Do TikTok Ads Work?

It’s quite easy to start your advertising campaign and generate ad videos on TikTok. Every brand requires a business account to create ads, manage campaigns, and track ad performance.

There are two options available for businesses when it comes to handling your TikTok advertising. You need to choose between simplified or custom mode for your Ads Management.

Simplified mode allows you to create ad videos as quickly as possible, and the rest is up to the TikTok algorithm. This mode can be a good start, when you want to get used to TikTok and the way it works.

Custom mode gives you more control over your ads, giving access to customization options. You can switch to this mode when you feel more confident on TikTok.

For both these options TikTok Ads include several levels: Campaigns (setting an objective and budget), Ad Groups (ad placement, audience, and optimization for each ad group), and Ads (creating your brand ad).

Let’s look closer into how to set up a TikTok account for businesses.

How to Set Up Your TikTok Ad Account

If you choose TikTok as your advertising platform, then a TikTok business account is a must. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to set it up.

1. Create a business account.

Your first step is to sign up for a TikTok business account on the TikTok Ads Manager. This is necessary to create ads, even if you already have a TikTok account. Here you enter some basic information like your email, password, and the verification code that is sent to your email (or phone).

2. Describe your business.

During this step you need to state your brand legal name and the information that will be used to generate contracts, pay taxes, send voucher notifications. This information should be accurate. Here you also select your country or region, the currency, the industry that you work in, and the time zone.

3. Enter your billing information.

Your billing information, including the billing address, will be stated on the invoices sent to you. Check the accuracy of these details.

4. Set up your payment type.

There are two payment options available for TikTok business accounts, manual or automatic. Note that you will not be able to change the payment method after you set it.

5. Select your ads manager mode.

As it was stated, TikTok Ads Manager has two modes, simplified and custom. The first one is suitable for you if you are just starting your TikTok journey or want to dedicate more time to running your business. The second option is perfect for you if you want to have full control over your TikTok ad campaign. You can switch between these settings anytime.

6. Build your ad.

This is an important step as here you choose your campaign objective. They are divided into three categories: awareness, consideration, conversion. Give your campaign a name and set a budget. Then you create an ad group where you choose your target audience, ad placement, schedule, etc. And then create an ad itself, up to 20 ads in an ad group. You also have access to helpful video creation tools.

7. Review and submit your ad.

When you are done with creating your ad, you can preview it in the right part of the screen. If you are happy with the result, click “Submit”. After a review process your ad goes live.

TikTok Ad Policy

TikTok, as all the other social media platforms, has its rules and regulations. Don’t forget to check them out before posting anything to ensure that you don’t miss out on anything.

TikTok has landing page rules, it should function properly without any broken links, information on the landing page must be accurate.

The rules also state which languages you can use for a target country.

TikTok policy also contains rules on prohibited content:

1. Illegal services and activities

2. Drugs and drug paraphernalia

3. Weapons, ammunition, and explosives

4. Tobacco products and smoking

5. Political and military content

6. Discriminatory content

7. Adult and sexual content

8. Intellectual property infringement

9. Misleading claims and inconsistent information

10. Sensational and shocking content

11. Inappropriate or unsuitable content

12. Excessive purchasing

There are also some restrictions on TikTok video content concerning:

1. Alcohol

2. Gambling and lotteries

3. Religion and culture

4. Protection of minors

5. Body image (in some regions)

All these rules, prohibitions, and restrictions are described in Advertising Policies of TikTok Business Help Center.

TikTok Ad Review Process

When you click “Submit” after you are done with creating your ad, it takes some time to review it. For this process to take as little time as possible, your video must meet the requirements and follow TikTok advertising policies.

What you should pay attention to:

• The video duration is 5 to 60 seconds (TikTok recommends 21 to 34 seconds)

• Aspect ratio for the video ad can be 9:16, 16:1, or 1:1 (TikTok recommends vertical 9:16 format)

• Supported formats for TikTok ads are .mp4, .mov, .mpeg, .3gp, .avi

• File size should not exceed 500 MB

• All video creatives must have sound

• The video should be localized for a particular target region in accordance with the ad policy

• The video should be high resolution

• The video must not contain watermarks

• There should be no spelling and grammatical errors

• Only 4 lines of ad caption can be displayed, the exceeding text appears after clicking “See more”, it is recommended to keep the caption within 100 characters

• The video should not contain prohibited content, check for the restricted content as well

• The landing page should be functional and mobile-friendly, match the product name and the information in the ad video

TikTok has a useful Preview Tool as well. It shows you how the ad is going to look like in the feed.

Following these recommendations can help you deliver your ad according to the schedule and save your time.

TikTok Ad Examples

1. Lancôme in Portugal

Lancôme launched their perfume Idôle Aura and started a TikTok ad campaign in Portugal to raise awareness and boost sales. They created a 6-second video presenting their new fragrance and its ingredients, and made it possible for TikTok users to request a sample from their In-Feed Ad. After an 11-day run thousands of viewers visited either the sample order page or Lancôme website reaching a 12.24% conversion rate.

2. PepsiCo in the USA and around the world

After PepsiCo created the first-ever nitrogen-infused soda Nitro Pepsi, it had to raise awareness of their new product. Their Branded Hashtag #SmoothLikeNitroPepsi invited TikTok users to participate in their challenge and show others how smooth and unique the new soda is. They also created a 15-second song for this campaign with the sound effects of an opening can, pouring soda, and fizz. In-Feed ads were used for the challenge. After two weeks of the campaign, their ad video was viewed 3.4 billion times and 2.1 million new videos were created.

3. Netflix in Germany

To raise awareness for a new series ‘Tribes of Europa’, Netflix started a Branded Hashtag #TribesChallenge encouraging TikTok users to generate their videos with their favorite tribes using a Branded Effect. Netflix collaborated with 10 popular German TikTok creators to start the challenge and inspire viewers to create series-based content. The campaign reached 1.5 billion video views.

TikTok Advertising Cost

Putting your ads on any social platform has a price tag to it, and TikTok as well. TikTok has not revealed its pricing policy, and there’s no information available on its website, but there are several reports available.

As mentioned earlier, the minimum that you are required to spend on your campaign is $500 with a minimum of $50 on each ad group. And depending on the type of TikTok ads that you choose, the duration of your campaign, the audience, your industry, the cost may vary.

The most expensive ad format is Branded Hashtag, its cost reaches up to $150,000 for a running week. Brand Takeovers may come at a price of $50,000 for a day. That’s why we see these types of advertising from big companies mostly.

But not only large corporations make good use of TikTok ads. TikTok ad cost per mille begins at $0.50 (per 1000 views) and cost per click starts at $0.02. This means that startups, small and medium businesses can also advertise on TikTok using In-Feed ads, which are far more affordable than Branded Hashtags or Takeovers.

Simple TikTok In-Feed ads can still have remarkable performance, raise awareness, and engage TikTok users, if they look good, are trendy, and are targeted at the right audience.

What Is the TikTok Pricing Model?

To get an advertising spot on TikTok for your ad, means that you have to bid for them to be displayed for your target audience. TikTok offers several bidding strategies depending on what matters the most to you and your business.

CPM (cost per mille) is a cost an advertiser pays for each thousand impressions or views of an advertisement. It is useful for estimating the efficiency of an ad type.

CPV (cost per view) is a similar metric to CPM, you pay for video views. The goal is to evaluate the engagement of TikTok users with your video content.

CPC (cost per click) bidding is how much you pay for each click on your ads. It shows how effective your campaign is.

TikTok Brand Guidelines for Marketers

The main concept of TikTok is creativity and entertainment. If you want to become a successful TikTok advertiser, popularize your brand, expand your audience, engage it, and inspire it, there are some tips that you can follow.

1. Spark interest and engage your viewers.

Content is the most important part of TikTok advertising. Make an ad that not only displays your product from different angles, but also entertains, captures attention, makes people want to be a part of your brand community. And it’s also important to keep the balance between fun and product visibility, the focus should not shift from your brand. There is a whole inspiration section on TikTok where you can see how other brands advertise their products and services, learn, and maybe use some good practices that have good performance.

2. Follow trends

Viral trends are what makes TikTok so captivating and popular. What can be better for your brand awareness than taking part in a challenge that is trending in your region or even all over the world. Trending sounds and music, effects, hashtags boost views and attract TikTok users. Research shows that 77% of TikTok users like when brands come up with new challenges and trends for people to take part in.

3. Collaborate with TikTok influencers

TikTok influencers have large groups of followers and promoting your brand with their help can attract a lot of new customers. You don’t necessarily need the famous ones; less popular creators can be as effective if they have the right audience for your business and can help you present your product in the best way. And, according to TikTok research, you don’t need to have millions of followers to go viral.

TikTok for Business is still quite new, and there is still a lot of room for creativity and new marketing opportunities.

TikTok Lead Generation

One of the useful tools offered by TikTok is Lead Generation for businesses. Its main goal is to help business accounts engage leads, prospects, and customers on TikTok. The tool makes it easy to reach potential clients and collect the necessary data directly from the In-Feed ads.

Lead Generation is simple: every time someone clicks on the CTA button, they are directed to Instant Form, where users can learn some information about your business, leave their contact details, and show their interest in your brand, the service or product that you offer.

Instant Form consists of a banner (background image), your brand image, introduction, and the questionnaire itself. All the elements of the form are customizable.

• Banner: upload an image or a carousel.

• Brand Image: select the image to represent your profile and choose a form style (light, dark, or smart).

• Introduction: write a headline, upload a logo, add a slogan of the brand or the campaign; this part of the form is optional, and you can switch it on and off when you want.

• Questions: create Custom Questions with the option for users to write a short answer, select from a multiple-choice answer, or make an appointment scheduling. Choose what personal information you need, and don’t forget to indicate your Privacy Policy.

Some personal details are also pre-filled in the form for the logged in TikTok users, which they can edit if necessary and submit.

TikTok Lead Generation tool is more than just information about customers. This campaign can help your business to increase conversions, drive web traffic if your form redirects customers to your website. It also allows you to automate your work with customers’ information, you can download the leads manually or sync them with your CRM.

TikTok Lead Generation Integrations

What can you do with the information that your customers provide? Well, downloading it is one way, but lead management is a lot easier when you use integrations. Integrating your CRM system with TikTok Lead Generation makes lead management smooth and flawless. The Integrations that are available on TikTok are LeadsBridge and Zapier. Both transfer TikTok leads directly to your CRM. With their help you can pair your TikTok with Salesforce, Google Sheets, Klaviyo, Gmail, HubSpot, Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, and many more. You can also streamline data between the tools that you use. Automated workflow is the best way to manage routine tasks and focus on the most important work.

TikTok for Business Pros and Cons

The first thing you do, when you want to enter a new social media platform with your brand, is weighing all the pros and cons for the business. Here’s what to expect from a TikTok marketing campaign.


• New audiences. As mentioned before, TikTok has a huge community of users with different interests and desires, and you are certain to find your audience. TikTok has a Lookalike Audience feature that helps you find people that may be interested in your product.

• Engagement rates. TikTok is known for its high engagement rates. This is the place to boost impressions, raise awareness, and gain customers.

• Creativity and informality. The TikTok community appreciates interesting videos as well as realness. That’s why the production costs may be lower than for videos on other platforms.


• Demographic groups. The platform may not be representative enough. Check if your target audience is on TikTok before launching an ad campaign.

• Content. For some brands informality may be an advantage to market their products, but some serious topics are difficult to adjust to the fun and entertaining nature of TikTok.

• Limited insight tools. TikTok Ads Manager supports some third-party measurement partners, but their measurement capabilities are limited and may not be enough to assess the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

TikTok Advertising Best Practices

How to get the attention that you need, how to attract people, and how to make your business stand out? Here are some practices that you can use to make high-performing ads for your TikTok ad campaign.

• Variety is key

Diverse creatives are what draws the attention of TikTok users. Don’t focus on just one creative, use multiple different ones. TikTok also recommends updating your creative at least every 7 days. TikTok Smart Video tool will help you to effectively design your new creatives.

• Get to the point

It’s important to captivate viewers from the first seconds, make your message short and direct. TikTok research shows that 63% of the videos with the highest click-through rate focus on their message within the first 3 seconds.

• Formulate your message

Create videos with compact and informative caption and text-overlays, add effects and stickers. 40% of videos with higher view-through rate have these elements.

• Include a strong CTA

TikTok has a selection of call-to-action buttons to choose for your ads. A direct and personal language drives to action.

• Choose the right music

Sound is an important element of any TikTok video, and the right sound is key. TikTok has a huge library of licensed tracks that you can use in your ads. The right lyrics can help you convey your message in an engaging way. Fast-paced tracks will get you a higher view-through rate.

• Shoot vertically

When you use TikTok it’s better to use it to the fullest. Make videos in 9:16 format, work with all the screen space that you have. TikTok reports that vertical videos have an average of 25% higher 6-second watch-through rate.

• Think about the viewer

You need to keep in mind user experience when creating your ad. TikTok allows advertisers to preview their ads, this will help you to see it from their perspective. The audience should understand the message correctly, there should be enough information but not too much.

• Be authentic

People prefer real and relatable content. TikTok revealed that almost 50% of the best performing ads on the platform tell their stories in an emotionally appealing way. Stay positive and true to your brand and community around it.

Pro tip: TikTok Creative Center has an Inspiration section with high-performing auction ads. This is a gallery of successful cases where you can find inspiration and learn what works for other businesses. Top Ads can be filtered by country, industry, objective, likes, and duration. Clicking on an ad displays the stats and details that can be useful for your planning.

TikTok Advertising Can Be Expensive Compared to Facebook and Instagram

The most popular social media platforms TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram have become good advertising tools. Here you have big audiences, communities with different interests, and everything you need to get your message through to your potential customers. Which platform to choose if you must choose? How do they differ? Which of them suits your budget?

All these platforms have similar bidding systems. Ad costs are determined in auctions where the main metrics are usually

• cost per click,

• cost per mille,

• cost per engagement.

Though Facebook and Instagram belong to one Meta Social Metaverse Company and use the same Ad Manager, the pricing is different.

There are other aspects that differ among these social media platforms and should be considered before making the decision:

• Competition. TikTok advertising is relatively new, and the ads are not so interrupting as on Facebook, they are a part of the feed. This means that the competition is not that high, and the audience is not so tired of ads.

• Engagement. TikTok or Instagram ads are more engaging, and there’s more chance that users will get interested and not just skip them. The newness of TikTok advertising also means that there are many ways to make something fresh and original, as well as to get the best advertising slots.

• Audiences. Different platforms sometimes represent different demographic groups, that’s another factor you should think about before choosing where to advertise.

• Industry. Take into account your niche as well, some platforms may not be suitable for some businesses.

And, of course, it is not obligatory to restrict your brand to just one social media platform, especially if you have the budget for it. Usually, companies have their accounts on different websites so that they reach more audiences.

With this ultimate guide to TikTok advertising, it is now up to you to decide whether this platform is for you. TikTok can give your brand the opportunity to achieve the set goals, find your place in the social media world, and create your engaged community of new customers and people with shared interests. This is the perfect place for your business if you know your target audiences and want to interact with them, have a creative side to your brand, and want to show the TikTok community what you are capable of.

All the various ad formats, creative and inspiring atmosphere, captivating videos, and what is more important people – this social media platform has everything you need to build an effective marketing campaign for your brand.

Want to collect creatives faster and more efficiently? Check out Spyder and find references for your high-performing ads today!

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