Gary Hammerschlag is a Project Manager at Bobsled Marketing.
At Bobsled, we have seen amazing results over the last couple of years from brands that have started experimenting with TikTok. Social media is evolving as not only a place to communicate but a source of inspiration that online sellers are now using to drive awareness (and ultimately sales) on Amazon. As eCommerce continues to grow, so do its advertising needs. More and more brands are engaging with customers through popular social media channels that are guaranteed to reach shoppers directly. It’s about time we focus on the most popular social media app of the year: TikTok.
Many of our clients at Bobsled have been incredibly successful at using TikTok to promote their brand and engage with a wider audience. This profitable phenomenon is becoming too big to ignore, putting it as one of the brightest spots on Bobsled’s current radar. TikTok’s rapid growth has led brands and retailers alike to jump on the bandwagon. Amazon even created its “Internet Famous” page driven by trending items on TikTok.
Today, I want to discuss why TikTok is such a powerful tool that can be used to your brand’s advantage. I’m always looking out for emerging trends and innovative marketing strategies that can help brands stay up-to-date with the evolving eCommerce industry. Through Bobsled, sellers can leverage hot new social media trends to drive up profits on Amazon. Our approach has been endorsed by Business Insider and recently put us on the new Inc. 5000 list as a top strategy for all eCommerce brands to consider in 2022 and beyond.
What is TikTok?
Similar to Instagram and Snapchat, TikTok is a wildly popular social media platform that is used to create, discover, and share short-form videos. Launched in 2016, it immediately became popular among younger generations of millennials and Gen Z. These audiences found that it was easy to express themselves through music, singing, dancing, makeup, comedy, lip-synching, and more, while also being able to spread messages to others.
The app reached new heights in early 2020, with research reporting that users from the U.S. spent an average of 858 minutes per month on TikTok.
What’s more, TikTok trends have had an impact on consumer shopping habits as a whole. There is a lot to be said about the growing interconnection of TikTok and Amazon Prime:
- 48% of Amazon Prime members use TikTok at least once a week
- Amazon created the “Internet Famous” page driven by items that are trending on TikTok
- There are more than 10,000 search results for “TikTok items” on Amazon
- According to SimilarWeb, certain beauty brands like Aquaphor and CeraVe have seen their Amazon traffic and sales drive up by more than 83% after one of their promotional videos went viral on TikTok
- TikTokTV is now available on Amazon FireTV
Why is TikTok Important to Amazon Sellers?
On Amazon, the competition gets fiercer by the minute, with new sellers emerging by the hundreds each day. Cost-Per-Click (CPCs) keep climbing, and it's harder to stand out with just organic marketing tactics. For some sellers, this could be a safe time to start experimenting with off-Amazon platforms in an effort to boost sales and reach wider audiences.-Amazon platforms to boost sales and reach wider audiences. Since there are more people using this app than ever, we are seeing an emergence of niches and consumer categories just like in the early days of Amazon’s eCommerce growth.
In June 2020, Statista research revealed that the most popular categories on TikTok are:
- Entertainment: 443.3 billion views
- Fitness and Sports: 43.3 billion views
- Home Renovation and DIY: 28.6 billion views
- Beauty and Skincare: 21.8 billion views
- Fashion: 17.5 billion views
- Recipes and Cooking: 12.9 billion views
- Pets: 7.5 billion views
- Outdoors: 1.2 billion views
How a Bobsled Client Experienced The Tik-Tok Effect By Accident
Maya Crothers of the beauty and skincare brand Circcell recently noted that they are seeing results on TikTok that they simply haven’t seen anywhere else. This was discovered by accident one day when a small local retailer posted a TikTok video with one of Circcell’s products. Crothers noticed a small bump in traffic to their website and, shortly thereafter, a boost in Amazon sales.
This effect certainly spread like dominos as the original influencer who posted that first product video also saw a boost in followers and likes. The biggest boost, however, appeared on Circcell’s Amazon Seller Central page. While the influencer shared a coupon on their TikTok account, most customers still ended up going directly to the seller’s website to purchase items.
Some of the most exciting and innovative brands have started flocking to TikTok in droves, using the platform as a new marketing tool. This is what has helped TikTok continue to keep its number one spot as the most popular social media platform of all time. This is not a trend that any brand should miss out on.
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How Brands Can Use TikTok to Boost Sales on Amazon
As sellers popularize the use of TikTok as a viable marketing tool, we are starting to see a few key strategies that brands can use to attract new audiences from TikTok and generate new leads on Amazon. Two of them are highlighted below:
1. Influencer Marketing and Trending Hashtags
Influencer marketing on TikTok has already blown other social media platforms out of the water, and it broke its own record in 2021 with no signs of slowing down this year. I believe that getting ahold of an influencer who can advertise your products is very likely to give you a boost in sales. According to research done by Matter, a lot of influencers are trusted more than traditional advertisements. A whopping 66% of consumers aged 18-29 have said that they would trust an influencer over a traditional commercial.
The Research Says It All
According to Smart Insights, 51% of marketers say that influencer marketing helps them acquire better customers. Additionally, more than half of Gen Z consumers are on TikTok, and these consumers are twice as likely to make a purchase based on an influencer’s recommendations.
There is even a hashtag made specifically for this phenomenon, known as #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt. This is where you can look to find success by driving sales through similarly popular hashtags. This particular one has over 346 million views alone. Another good hashtag to use is #AmazonFinds, which is a great way to directly link your new TikTok followers to your Amazon page.
2. TikTok Ads
You can publish ads on TikTok the same way you can on Facebook or Instagram. This allows you a new and innovative way to reach audiences. TikTok Ads are fantastic for any online marketer who is looking to engage and connect with larger audiences. This is a more direct method of communication than trying to simply target people based on keywords and search demographics. Here, you can target potential shoppers at the “top of the funnel” who are already interested in your particular niche, and start building brand awareness.
How Brands Can Send Traffic from TikTok to Amazon
It is usually not difficult to set up campaigns that will lead new customers to the Amazon Store or a specific product page. Most brand campaigns that lead to an Amazon Store will post TikTok videos representing the brand or the product itself before showing audiences how they can purchase whatever is for sale.
It is vital that you know how to track metrics and results from TikTok ads leading to Amazon. Even though TikTok has its own tool called TikTok Pixel that can track metrics and search results that lead to your website, you should still be utilizing Amazon tracking as well. You should set your Amazon Attribution to reflect your TikTok campaigns.
Some brands don’t like to drive external traffic to Amazon, but with research showing that most shoppers start their buying journey on Amazon regardless of advertising, websites are becoming more eager to chime in on all platforms. If more and more customers are directed to business websites that cite Prime delivery and quick services, it will be all the easier to drive up a bigger net profit. Not to mention, this is the perfect time to drive off-Amazon traffic through the Amazon Brand Referral Program.
Data shows that a majority of TikTok users are between 10-40 years old. When compared to Amazon users (with a strong emphasis on the 18-34 age bracket), it is clear that there is a huge opportunity for brands to maximize TikTok marketing efforts.
When is the Best Time to Leverage Amazon on TikTok?
Interestingly, there are certain times of the day which are regarded as optimal for posting to TikTok, according to a large study recently completed by Marketing Hub:
- Monday: 6 AM, 10AM, 10 PM
- Tuesday: 2 AM, 4AM, 9 AM
- Wednesday: 7 AM, 8 AM, 11 PM
- Thursday 9 AM, 12 PM, 7 PM
- Friday: 5AM, 1PM, 3PM
- Saturday: 11 AM, 7PM, 8 PM
- Sunday: 7 AM-8 AM, 4 PM
All times are based in the EST time zone. The bolded times above may offer higher engagement.
Should You Be Using TikTok to Promote Your Products?
All of these new advertising opportunities on TikTok may sound exciting, but is it the right move for you and your brand? To be honest, it depends. Some brands that exist within some of the higher volume categories that are maxing out Amazon advertising spend might find this to be a good time to practice omnichannel strategies. If you are a brand that has the time and budget to learn about this new channel, TikTok might be a good move for you. However, it is not the silver bullet solution; success on TikTok is truly dependent upon your brand’s size and omnichannel needs.
Expand Your Omnichannel Awareness and Drive Brand Success on TikTok Today!
Usage of TikTok is rapidly increasing, with an ever-evolving amount of user engagement. This is creating a really good opportunity for marketers who are still in the “raising awareness” stage of their marketing funnels. TikTok can offer incremental growth opportunities for sellers that are starting to feel a bit overcrowded by saturated Amazon advertising channels.
While the switch to a new platform can be overwhelming at first, there are a number of new marketing strategies emerging for consumer brands on TikTok. These are still the early days, with plenty of room to grow. This is a good time for an emerging brand to really get creative!