It’s the app known for sparking a congressional inquiry regarding national security or more importantly for “exposing” Panera Bread’s mac and cheese. As irritating or odd as you may find TikTok, brands should give it a chance. The time is now to pull your best TikTok marketing ideas together and form a plan, before dismissing the app as a fading trend.

Created in 2017, TikTok is a video-sharing app and social platform that allows users to share videos up-to-a minute long. The format has been around for a few years; the app is an offspring of but often emulates the humor of Vine. And in the last year, it has exploded in popularity.

Some would say that it’s the next big platform for advertisers to watch, but we disagree. Brands should actively jump in and join. Here’s how to do just that and some great brands that are already doing it right.


TikTok for Marketers

Why get on the bandwagon? Because the best TikTok marketing ideas are still waiting to be discovered. Here’s what you should know:


1. How Popular Is TikTok?

TikTok boasts over 500 million downloads from the Google Play Store and sits above YouTube in the Apple App Store charts. Additionally, 1-in-8 U.S. adults have already joined the platform.


2. TikTok is like Vine, but it can last.

In many ways, TikTok is the next Vine, Twitter’s former-yet-infamous 6-second video platform. The platform demonstrates similarities in terms of its ability to create cultural moments and memes, as well as continues to shift the dynamic of how young people communicate online. Unlike Vine, it will most likely not feel like a flash in the pan. This means there’s a better likelihood your TikTok marketing ideas will have better staying power.


3. TikTok Demographics.

Like most social networks, especially in their early stages, TikTok’s demographics skew toward the younger crowd.  It’s estimated that around 50% of users are under the age of 34. Building brand awareness in this demographic right now is a huge opportunity.

If your brand is going after this demographic for the first time, jumping on the TikTok platform now may increase awareness within your customer targets. Less competition means future customers will be aware of (and talking about!) your brand in the long term.


4. TikTok Ads Aren’t Pervasive (yet…)

Because TikTok is still relatively shiny and new, users aren’t being bombarded by ads and branded content yet like they are on Facebook-owned platforms. Native TikTok content can be legitimately entertaining and also influence consumer behavior. Advertising inventory is available, and TikTok has been actively coming up with new ways to get ads in front of their users, but the best way to get started with the platform is just to start posting.


Clever TikTok Marketing Ideas

So, what brands are already on TikTok performing well? The best TikTok marketing ideas, methods and execution we’re currently tracking are coming from a brand you may not expect — a legacy newspaper.

The Washington Post posts every day and has amassed 300,000 followers and nearly 16 million likes on their posts.


@washingtonpostGasp!!!!!! #newsroom #eviltwin #somosWaPo #telenovela♬ original sound – washingtonpost

@washingtonpostThe news tried really hard to write wesleylowery #newspaper♬ Illumin – jvantheman

And of course, even the beloved burrito chain, Chipotle, has done well on the app, too. Their account has surpassed 250k followers.

@chipotleSmh #foryou #foryoupage #college101 #chipotle♬ Fire Burning – Sean Kingston
@chipotleDaily affirmations #peptalk #fyp #chipotle♬ original sound – rhysy_w


Why do Chipotle & The Washington Post have a large TikTok following?

The best TikTok marketing ideas seem to be built from a similar foundation. Both brands have actively acknowledged and embraced that they are in fact a brand on TikTok and use humor to their advantage. And both brands’ genuine presence and honesty with their audiences has shown to draw new awareness and positive feelings towards a brand. They’re also capturing the positive aspects of the ‘Wendy’s on Twitter’ energy, effectively convincing users they deserve to stay via an entertaining presentation.***Falling into the “TikTok is just another app ‘for the kids’ trap” dismisses the great potential to reach new and existing audiences. Choosing to wait to get involved, may very well void a major opportunity to get people talking. The app isn’t going anywhere, and the best way to learn is by doing. The best TikTok marketing ideas have yet to be created. (need help?)