Your ultimate guide to TikTok: the seconds-long streaming app
Even though Musical.ly has sadly retired and Vine is rolling in its grave… the TikTok app has revived the life of 15-second long videos of young teens lip-syncing and completing live meme challenges. Launched in September 2016, TikTok became the world’s fastest growing app to be used amongst millennials, having over 80 million users within the United States, and about 795 million international users, surpassing Musical.ly which boasted 100 million users of its own. Unlike similar apps before, TikTok focuses on music as opposed to comedy, as well as not being limited to lip-syncing, dancing, parkour, challenges, magic tricks, and “fails”. TikTok allows users to have free creativity control without restrictions on outfits and dance moves.
Business looking for a unique, active and trendy way to interact with customers and users should not look past the mobile marketing tool TikTok. This ultimate guide to TikTok videos will cover:
Streaming Economy and Growth
How brands use TikTok
Implementing TikTok into your Digital Strategy
TikTok Video Size
1. Streaming Economy and Growth
The iOS and Android app TikTok is a free to use with no sign up or account creation needed unlike Live.ly or Captioned, IGTV app or even YouTube Premium. In the past, TikTok stars transferred over to YouTube monetization, Instagram sponsorships or brand deals when it came to the crunch in making a worthwhile living as an influencer. Since then, TikTok introduced their own monetization options and has captured a large share of the influencer market.
Similar to most social media apps, TikTok thrives off followers who like and comment on content as well as hashtags letting users find relatable content by theme. Promoted by Jimmy Fallon and DJ Khaled, TikTok received a flood of new users downloading the app in the United States. By simply tweeting #tumbleweedchallenge on “The Tonight Show”, viewers were able to interact with the show by acting like a tumbleweed, and uploading their versions of videos to TikTok. This became the biggest interaction TikTok had received since launching with the challenge generating over 8000 submissions with 10.4 million views. Some new creators even chose to buy TikTok likes to increase their content exposure.
2. How Can Your Business use TikTok?
Companies in the United States have started experimenting with the promotional benefits of the TikTok app. These campaigns use TikTok’s “challenge” concept by making personalised challenges designs to promote their businesses and well as providing new music clips for users to play, some having big prizes to be won. A Malaysian McDonald’s created a contest called the “BigMacTikTok Challenge, where users would dance to a pre-recorded #BigMacTikTok music clip the company had created. After completing a video, the user would be required to submit an entry via the official McDonald’s app. This promotion allowed all users who submitted an entry to win a free Big Mac and a few cash prizes to selected entries.
(Image: #BigMacTikTok – Instagram)
High-end fashion label Guess, also partnered with TikTok creating a millennial ad Generation Z targeted campaign during 2018. Every time users opened the app, they were then directed to the #InMyDenim challenge automatically urging users to post videos with the selected hashtag. This promotion marked the first hashtag promotion on TikTok in the United States, although unlike McDonald’s there were no prizes to be given out, this did not stop thousands of users posting videos with the Guess hashtag.
(Image: TikTok Instagram – #InMyDenim)
3. Implementing TikTok into your Digital Strategy
A major feature that TikTok offers is to not show advertising or monetization methods within the app. Disabling advertising popups and monetization makes the user experience more enjoyable and comfortable. This also allows businesses to gain larger benefits from the hashtag challenge. Showcasing products through a hashtag challenge gives companies valuable content and marketing ideas for free to post across other platforms. This kind of authenticity remains to be the most respected marketing strategy.
4. TikTok Video Specs
TikTok Video Best Practices
Video File Size: up to 287.6 MB (iOS) and 72 MB (Android) in size
Video Length Max: 15 seconds
Can also combine story videos together for up to 60 seconds of video
Video Captions: Available
Video Sound: Recommended
TikTok Video Dimensions
Vertical video is preferred, but horizontal is permitted
Asset resolution: 1080 x 1920 (video must use the entire canvas)
150px margin on top and bottom, 64px margin on each side.
Aspect ratio: 9:16.
File type: .mp4 or .mov file.
Video code: H.264 encoded.
Recommended ratio in Clipchamp: 9:16 (full portrait)
How to Create TikTok Videos with Clipchamp’s free online video editor
Ready to start creating videos for TikTok? Check out these awesome TikTok video templates you can customize with your own messaging and branding. You can start with one of these video templates to create funny # challenge videos or change the footage and audio to create your own music video for TikTok.