Small business TikTok is thriving! At first, I wasn’t much of a fan of TikTok for businesses. I still don’t think it’s right for everyone. It doesn’t have much of a local connection at this point so if you’re trying to reach a local audience, it’s probably not where you want to be.
However, it can propel businesses to a national reach and with it’s new eCommerce features, it could be really good for product based businesses.
As such, I wanted to share some businesses that I’ve seen succeed on TikTok and a bit about why they’re doing so well. Don’t worry, you don’t need to dance!
Laughing at Yourself
Duolingo is not a small business. I’ll say that from the get-go, but they’re successful on TikTok. Part of the reasoning for that is they’re open to joking about themselves. They’ve paid attention to the jokes and memes that are out there about the Duolingo bird and they’re playing into it (with their content and how they’re responding to comments.)
TikTok has a lot of humor involved and Duolingo has done a great job adding to that humor. Now, if you’re thinking this can’t apply to you, you’re wrong. Sure, your small business might not have memes about it but your industry probably does. What jokes do people think about your work? What are the areas people find funny? How can you incorporate that into your TikTok to show people that you can laugh at yourself.
Here’s an example of Duolingo incorporating a TikTok trend (mommy?) with jokes about how Duolingo sounds a lot like Dua Lipa.
Another type of content that is popular on TikTok is seeing how something was made. This glass studio is a great example of that. They show behind-the-scenes content that explains how something was made of the special tools needed to put something together.
Not only is that content entertaining, it also shows how much skill goes into what the company is producing. It makes you really value the craft. Not to mention, this type of content can easily be used across platforms. There’s nothing to keep you from using the same type of content on Instagram or Facebook.
There are even people who just show the packing process after someone makes an order. It may seem simple to you but people like to see this kind of content.
Involving Your Team
If you don’t want to be on camera, someone on your team might jump at the opportunity. I especially love how the Old Salem Museum has involved their team on their TikTok account. They use trending TikTok sounds that relate to what they’re doing. They’re willing to be a bit silly and still relate it back to their business. It makes them more likable overall.
A lot of TikTok business accounts, focus on the idea that there’s one person running the TikTok who has to explain to older colleagues what these strange trends are about. For instance, a sound bite mentioning Moon Pies took off recently. The official Moon Pie account did a great job addressing it. You never know when a trend will pop up that relates to your business. The best way to watch out for these is to scroll through TikTok periodically. That’s how you’ll get ideas and inspiration and see what the big stories are.
The Old Barracks Museum did a great job of this too. They picked up on a trend (the pug with no bones) and incorporated it with their own spin.
Once you start getting views on your TikToks, you’ll likely get questions in the comments. Instead of just answering these in the comments like you would on other platforms, make a new video to respond. It’s a great way to get new content and TikTok will connect the original comment to your video answer. That means more chances for people to find it. This is especially important to do if you have one video go viral.
Then as people see more of that video, they’ll see your question response videos in the comments.
Show Off your Products
If you’re an eCommerce company, TikTok has lots of features for you. However, it can also be as easy as just showing a short video of your product. Take this video of a bar cabinet for example. It has 3 million views! The amount of effort this video took is probably miniscule. It’s just a simple video of opening that bar up with some music in the background.
It can really be that easy. You don’t have to make everything complicated. Small business TikTok can be simple.
I talked about this a lot, but if you’re spending time to make good content, repurpose it somewhere else. There are tons of podcasts that are finding a new audience on TikTok. They just repurpose snippets of their podcast recording sessions. These teases of content are super popular.
If you make videos for any other platforms, it’s a good idea to cut it down and use the best parts of TikToks too.
Tips or helpful content are great on pretty much every platform. I won’t go into these too much since you’re hopefully doing these already. Here’s an example of a good tip video on TikTok.
Grow your small business TikTok
Now that you have some ideas to start with, it’s time to start posting. Keep in mind that TikTok is a high-content platform. That means you can post A LOT! And you probably should if you want to really grow. That means multiple posts per day. You can start with one a day to get use to the format but be ready with ways you can sustainably grow (answering questions is a great way to make more videos that don’t require much effort.)
If you want some help, I’m always available for a consultation.