Digital Transformation Agency

As TikTok takes over from Facebook, ‘non-perfect’ advertising is here

By George Sharpe | Co-founder

Favoured

|

The Drum Network article

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April 20, 2022 | 6 min read

TikTok is fast becoming a contender for the top spot among the biggest social media platforms. As part of The Drum’s Digital Advertising Deep Dive, George Sharpe, co-founder of marketing agency Favoured, argues that this heralds a paradigm shift for creators and advertisers, with authentic ‘non-perfect’ content having its time in the sun.

The fall of Facebook

Facebook is currently the biggest social media platform in the world. But with 2.91 billion monthly active users, why does it feel like it’s disappearing?

Meanwhile, it seems as if every viral trend from the last 12 months has come from TikTok. Be honest: how many of those trends live in your head rent-free?

Favoured on the rise (and rise) of TikTok and how it's affecting Instagram.

Favoured on the rise (and rise) of TikTok and how its growth is affecting Instagram

It’s no surprise that TikTok was the most downloaded app of 2021, with 656m downloads and eight new users every second. It looks set to surpass Facebook in a matter of years. Already, gen Z users prefer TikTok over Instagram as most creators prefer the more realistic and less polished look of TikTok.

‘Non-perfect’ video: a whole new digital landscape

With the increasing popularity of TikTok and the freedom of the platform, it can feel like anybody could create the next big trend.

We’re starting to see the digital marketing world adopt ‘non-perfect’ forms of video to help promote their brand or product. That includes user-generated content (UGC).

With hauls, unboxings and real reviews, we start to view content creators differently with TikTok. Viewers are pulling away from the perfect, filtered lifestyles of Instagram and opting for the inclusive and more real-life feel of TikTok.

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Remi Bader is a great example of this. Rising to TikTok fame with her realistic hauls of high street fashion, the model is a favorite influencer on the app with 2.1 million followers.

The Duolingo approach: how brands can do it right

A trend that disrupts perfect advertising is when a brand’s marketing manager steps into the limelight. No filters or fancy models, but ‘corporate professionals’ participating in silly trends while referencing their brand.

The language education app Duolingo, for instance, has been causing hilarious havoc on TikTok through a range of content and engagement. By commenting on other viral videos, it has pushed its way into the spotlight. Currently with 3.5 million followers, its most viewed video has 25.5m views and 5.4m likes.

What made it go viral? Well, its mascot (a large green owl) sinks to the floor in despair with a Taylor Swift song playing and the caption ‘every time you open Google Translate, I lose a feather.’ Out-of-the-box thinking and, dare we say, comedy gold.

This simple and funny storytelling pushes the boundaries on what brands were so precious about previously – their reputation.

Don’t create ads for TikTok – create TikToks for ads

What does this all mean for digital marketing? We need to rethink our old approach to ads. With TikTok, we can become more creative, think outside the box and (potentially) be completely original in our content.

Your TikTok ad must be authentic to receive the best results. Adding personality is also key to success. Implementing trending sounds and effects is a great way to create TikToks for ads, making you more likely to appear on people’s ‘For You’ pages.

One way to do this is using ‘spark ads,’ which increase your sales and grow your audience organically. This leads to a more healthy and longer-lasting fanbase, similar to boosting a post on Instagram. It’s a really simple formula to create great content and promote your product at the same time.

Boost your brand

Whether you think that Facebook is thek ing of social media or not, you can’t deny that TikTok is an extremely useful tool to help boost your brand’s marketing. Time to get stuck in.

Read more from The Drum’s latest Deep Dive over at our Digital Advertising hub.

Digital Transformation Agency

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