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TikTok Marketing in 2021

TikTok has been named as the fastest growing social media platform of all time, as one of the most downloaded apps globally for the past two years. TikTok has 800 million active users worldwide. That makes TikTok 9th in terms of social network sites, ahead of LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and Snapchat. Its fast-paced nature keeps users engaged for relatively long periods of time, with users spending an average of 52 minutes per day on the app.


What is TikTok?

TikTok is the destination for short-form mobile videos. Users can create and upload a video—up to 15 seconds long and incorporating music with filters and editing effects, or showing the user lip-synching or dancing to a song. Its rapid video format is not just limited to that. TikTok creators are using the platform to discuss important subjects, campaigns, and educate their audiences.

Who uses it?

TikTok is most popular with teenagers around the world. They figured out early on how to use and adapt the platform to their tastes and needs. But many other people have been encouraged to use the app by teenage family members. For example, celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey has attracted over 25M fans on TikTok after being taught how to use the platform for dance challenges with his Gen-Z-aged daughter, Tilly.

TikTok is available in 154 countries and TikTok penetration is seemingly at its highest in Asia. Global brands such as Nike, Skittles, Fenty Beauty, Pepsi and Sony etc have recognized the importance of TikTok as a key way to engage with young audiences, encourage user-generated content, and partner with relevant influencers.

How does TikTok work?

TikTok users can discover videos through the use of hashtags. Hashtags can be added to any video uploaded to TikTok in the caption, and this is how users are able to search through content.

When logged into the app, each user views an individually-curated home feed called the For You page. This is the best place to go to discover new content and users to follow.

TikTok places content here which it deems interesting for each individual user, based on signals picked up by its algorithm. The algorithm works on factors such as: country, language, device, hashtags, captions, sounds, genre, the type of video you interact with, accounts you follow, who you engage with etc.

How can marketers use TikTok?

TikTok offers a brilliant opportunity for digital marketers to reach younger audiences around the globe. Many social media memes begin on TikTok, and brands can boost their credibility by being at the forefront of these cutting-edge trends. TikTok does not require huge budgets for content creation either, as spontaneous content produced in ordinary surroundings has just as much as a chance of cutting through. 

Unlike social media platforms such as Instagram or YouTube, TikTok accounts with zero followers can get millions of views on a new video thanks to the viral nature of the algorithm. As long as the content appeals to the audience, the engagement will follow.

Key ways that marketers can begin using TikTok:

  • Create a brand page and experiment with content types. Content can be created relatively quickly and with no budget. The best thing to do is follow trending/viral hashtags and get involved with the latest memes, and apply them to your brand. 
  • Another smart way to utilize TikTok is to leverage influencer communities. Influencers have established highly engaged followings through posting high quality content which resonates. Brands can approach and collaborate on campaigns which use these influencers’ skills and knowledge. 
  • Start a hashtag challenge, creating a challenge for users to enter provides a great way for brands to start a cultural trend or meme.


TikTok isn’t like the other social media platforms on offer, so it might be a while before you understand how TikTok works if you’re used to those. TikTok can often work as a successful marketing channel. You may be able to reach a large number of people at a relatively low cost. This could allow you to surpass your competition.

It’s predicted that the app will attract over one billion users over the course of the year, and could potentially attract 1.2 billion.

TikTok is reportedly working on an option for creators to film much longer videos, of up to three minutes, so we are set to see even more creativity from the platform.  There will be many more examples of brands approaching TikTok to reach new audiences, from setting collaborative and creative challenges to utilising the creative influencers thriving on the platform.

Will you use TikTok as a way to market your business? Let us know in the comments