Gen Z truly loves TikTok (or DouYin in China). Who knew that this unconventional platform, where users around the world sing, dance, and lip-sync for attention would gain an audience of almost a half a billion users in its two year existence, and a +237% monthly growth rate between 2018-19? And where 66% of its users are reportedly under the age of 30? Certainly not Western luxury brands, who have only just started to explore TikTok as a marketing tool to target and expand their younger consumer base in 2020.
Given this, we take a look at several important reasons why creating engaging content for TikTok could be the marketing solution for many Western brands.
1. Creativity may appear in generous supply on TikTok, but is it?
In fact, all big networks – Facebook, Instagram, Weibo and WeChat appeared groundbreaking and rebellious at their inception. Moreover, most of these social media sites started with a younger active user base that matured together with the network. At some point, however, the teenage audience on TikTok will come of age, so their youth shouldn’t divert brands from the platform.
Young consumers might appear more impulsive and less knowledgeable about the real managing behind luxury, but the changing nature of luxury has catapulted this consumer base to the forefront; hence, brands can no longer thrive without them. For this reason, even if the content on TikTok appears too out of the box or rebellious for luxury brands, it’s not the consumers who will have to change but the brands.
2. Video content is key to a brand’s success
Something marketers preach repeatedly is that video content compliments storytelling, including sales and ROI. And TikTok is the ultimate destination for quirky short-videos, which makes it an ideal platform for luxury brands to create video content to reach a possible younger consumer base.
Burberry became on of the first luxury rebels to run both organic and paid campaigns on TikTok across the UK and US. The Drum reports that instead of launching products in bricks-and-mortar stores or online first, Burberry has resorted to a digital first strategy. In fact, the British company turned to Instagram and WeChat.
Considering that the company reported 4% increase in sales, it could be argued that the strategy worked in Burberry’s favour. The “Master the Thomas Burberry Monogram Challenge” urged users to recreate the new “monogram with their hands to unlock a new lens.” The campaign also generated 57 million view for the brand.
3. TikTok transforms conservative luxury players into digital-first brands
The Burberry case shows that TikTok can bring new life into conservative heritage retailers. In fact Burberry has rebranded itself as a youthful, cool brand that is both super luxurious and entertaining. This transformation has Brough Burberry closer to its fan base while creating an immersive customer experience.
4. Localized marketing
Few brands are lucky enough to have Burberry’s or Gucci’s marketing budgets. The vast majority of luxury brands are struggling to optimize their marketing budgets while trying to go global. For SMEs who struggling to take their products and services abroad because they lack multi-million dollars marketing campaigns, TikTok is an affordable marketing approach.
TikTik has successfully mastered the art of localized video marketing, resulting in high engagement rates in countries like India and China.” states Medium. In fact, TikTok’s cultural strategy is helping Western brands publicize their content in the country of their choice while also connecting the retailer to local talents – a double win.
Considering the benefits of creating content on TikTok and the boost in popularity of the social video-sharing app in the West, more and more International luxury brands are starting to overcome their current privacy, security, and marketing concerns and are beginning to experiment with TikTok videos. And since everyone who’s anyone is already on TikTok, brands can no longer ignore using it as a marketing tool.