With a billion users on TikTok, B2B needs to get on board

By Jennifer Brennan, Digital Strategist, Fox Agency.

B2B is always looking for new and exciting ways to shake off its reputation as ‘boring to boring’ and with TikTok reaching a whopping billion active users, according to Market Watch, it’s high time that B2B brands joined the party.

If you still think TikTok’s sole purpose is cleaning hacks and dance moves, read on and prepare to be proven wrong. Let’s give B2B the exposure it deserves and a stage to share its personality, engage an exciting online community and yes, maybe even bust a move or two.

So, what’s the point?

Okay, let’s manage expectations here. If you’re looking for hard and fast leads, TikTok isn’t going to be the platform to produce them. If that’s what you’re after, stop reading now.

However, when it comes to brand awareness and employee advocacy, now it’s TikTok’s time to shine. Imagine the CEO of your B2B business goes viral on TikTok, just like that you have the perfect opportunity to showcase your awesome workplace culture, break through corporate formalities and humanise what can otherwise run the risk of becoming a faceless B2B brand.

Even if you don’t go viral, simply taking on a TikTok strategy pushes the boundaries of traditional B2B content and shows your brand has its finger on the pulse of fast-moving trends. Plus, there’s a huge educational opportunity to plug your brand’s services and products, at the same time as reaching a brand-new audience. As much as it would be nice to go viral and gain a huge following, it isn’t essential for TikTok success.

In contrast to other platforms, TikTok doesn’t prioritise following as a key metric. When selecting content for its For You or Discover pages, to showcases trending videos, topics and hashtags, TikTok disregards following in exchange for authenticity and relevancy. So for B2B brands with a relatively modest following on other social platforms, TikTok is the way forward for boosting your brand awareness, humanising your brand and getting yourself out there in fun and creative ways.

Just remember to keep it real

Bear with the toe-curling phrase and hear me out.

For TikTok, authentic content is the key to success and TikTok prides itself on its status as the platform for authentic self-expression. Your average advertising content is simply not going to cut it on TikTok and could potentially do more harm than good when it comes to gaining an engaged community for your brand.

TikTok content needs to be created in the same vein as existing videos and showcase your brand’s identity in an authentic way with unpolished, trend-led content. On TikTok, we don’t want to beat the crowds, we want to join them and thereby grow a community which can be developed further through engagement with others on the platform.

Though a B2B brand’s TikTok strategy should largely be fuelled by organic content, TikTok also offers several options for paid media. These include in-feed ads and brand takeover video ads, branded hashtag challenges and more. However, a word to the wise; for successful paid campaigns, your content also needs to integrate with the For You page – slotting into the TikTok scene like other organic videos.

And finally, short-form video content is undoubtedly the placement to invest in right now. Instagram is taking a shift towards video, and it is widely understood that video content performs more successfully than its static counterparts across multiple other platforms. Splash your brilliant TikTok content across Instagram, YouTube Shorts and even Facebook, then sit back and watch your reach and brand visibility grow.

So, what are you waiting for? There’s a billion users to reach out there, the clock’s ticking and it’s time to join TikTok.

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