Your Guide to Sustainable Strategies on TikTok

You may have heard by now that TikTok has officially surpassed YouTube in user time spent per month. TikTok’s fun effects and approachable content have users hooked, often spending hours scrolling through the app. Where the people are is where you want your brand to be. So if you have been hesitant to join TikTok or have struggled to formulate the right strategy for your brand, no worries. Our guide to sustainable strategies on TikTok will help set you up for long-term success.

User-generated content

At its core, TikTok is a user-generated content platform, offering the opportunity to highlight the relationship customers have with your brand. Your customers have unique ways of expressing messages better than you could ever present yourself, so repost their content when they feature you! Reposting, liking and commenting alone encourages users to create content that includes your brand.

Reposting is less resource-intensive too. It helps your brand stay active and engaging without continuously having to produce your own original content. You can also ask the creators’ permission to edit their video — adding captions is especially important for inclusivity.

But beware of what you repost. Only repost content that shares your brand’s values and is positive and entertaining.

Character-driven content

Character-driven content is talent-forward content that is typically selfie-style, sometimes using a green screen and other in-app features. This type of content is successful on TikTok because it feels approachable. When audiences feel a connection with the face of your brand, they can more easily connect with the brand itself.

But characters are like unicorns, wonderful, sparkly and magnetic, but so very hard to find. That being said, don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t find one. Your content doesn’t have to be about a character — it’s all about style. And style is sustainable.

Text-to-speech feature

One way to establish an approachable presence on TikTok is using the text-to-speech feature. You probably noticed in July of this year that videos using text-to-speech were everywhere on social media. And like you probably did, we assumed it was a trend at first. But it looks like text-to-speech is here for the long haul.

Not only is the feature helpful for accessibility, it gives creators the opportunity to produce content without having to be the voice. It’s great from a branding perspective too because it gives a voice to your brand without having to select a human person. This saves time while creating content as well – the faster you hop on trends the better. Text-to-speech helps you work smarter, not harder.

Post regularity

While the general recommendation is to post to TikTok at least once per day, we understand that you may not have time to post multiple times a week. Really, it’s all about finding a cadence that works for you. After all, we’re looking for sustainable strategies, not burnout. Your audience can tell when you don’t genuinely enjoy creating a piece of content, so try to keep it GVO (good vibes only).

Whether or not time is on your side, it’s best not to waste it. Figure out what works best for your brand so you can spend your time wisely.

Make enough quantity to learn the quality

Learning what works for your brand on TikTok takes some experimentation. You can’t expect to create viral TikToks straight out the gate, so be okay with imperfections, learn from them, and move on quickly.

Create as much content as you can and tag the content so you can see what’s getting the most engagement. From there, narrow it down to focus on creating content that gets the most views.

High-quality content doesn’t always perform well on TikTok

If you’re used to producing successful social content, TikTok might just humble you. Content that performs well on other platforms doesn’t always hit the same on TikTok. Often times higher produced, more expensive content doesn’t perform as well as more relatable, approachable and less produced clips.

Highly produced content isn’t very conducive to the high speed of trends either. In the time it takes to draft a creative brief, produce and edit, the trend has already passed and you’ve lost the opportunity to engage with your audience. Don’t be afraid to risk imperfection over joining a trend that could lead to high engagement.

What should my TikTok approach be?

TikTok is still very new, and identifying what’s successful continues to be a moving target. Analytics aren’t all that comprehensive yet, so gear your approach toward testing and learning.

Establish content categories, tag what you create, and track the engagement rate on those tags. What weeks did you gain the most followers? When did you receive the most views? Maybe it was a trend you hopped on or an event where you shared glimpses from behind the scenes. Whatever it may be, pay attention to what does well and focus your efforts on those categories.

You can only measure what you can control, so jump in and get posting to learn what types of content perform best for your brand. And finally, engage, engage, engage with your audience! People like knowing there is a human behind the content of the account.

Need inspiration? Here are some of our favorite TikToks:

@targetyeah no its cool 🥲 ##gothtarget @sparky_minibullterrier♬ original sound – target

@vans@popupflorist makes us a bouquet featuring the Meadow Patchwork Classic Slip-On. ##vans ##diyprojects ##florist ##tiktokflorist♬ original sound – meme rivera ミ☆

@chipotleTotal smoke show ##chipotle ##brisket ##funny ##fyp ##12ftskeleton ##halloween ##viral♬ original sound – Chipotle