TikTok is a platform that celebrates creators. From amateur dancers recreating 15-second dances to amateur chefs folding a tortilla into quadrants, the video platform gives anyone and everyone an opportunity to showcase their passions with the potential to go viral. But businesses also have the opportunity to go viral via the platform’s short-form videos, which range from 15 seconds to one minute.
Whether you’re a designer showcasing ongoing or completed projects or a home furnishings retailer offering short, digestible DIY decorating tips, TikTok can be a valuable tool to get your brand recognized. Below are four tips for using TikTok in your design or retail business.
1. Know that TikTok isn’t just for Gen Z.
How many of us have opened TikTok and thought, “I’m too old for this”? While in many cases that might be true, the number of older users on the app is growing. Around 50 percent of users are under the age of 34, which means half of users are mid-30s and older. With more than 2.6 billion app downloads and more than 800 million monthly active users worldwide, that’s a significant number of older users.
2. Get comfortable with the platform.
Before making your own TikToks, scroll through the app to see what others are doing. Get familiar with the trending sounds and videos, and brainstorm how to make them work for your brand. Experiment with making your own videos and learn how to use transitions and voiceovers. Learn how to stitch
and duet videos to interact with other creators, and research the best hashtags to use to extend your reach.
3. Embrace the trends, but find your niche.
There’s no formula for what goes viral on TikTok. From paint mixing to candy making, the most successful creators have found a captive audience interested in the specific content they’re putting out. To extend your reach, participate in viral hashtags or challenges, and use trending sounds as a backdrop for your content. But to ultimately generate brand awareness and increase audience engagement, use your expertise to make your content stand out in a unique way. This could mean getting your employees involved or starting an educational or how-to series that is uniquely yours. Get creative and experiment with different types of content to see what sticks.
4. Lead viewers off TikTok.
Once you have a captive audience on your TikTok platform, know how to funnel potential customers elsewhere. Direct followers to your Instagram page through a link in your bio, which can lead them to more serious examples of your work or products and makes it easier for them to contact you.
3 Design TikTok Accounts Worth Following
Recent design grad Emily Shaw went viral last year when she renovated her parents’ home while they were on vacation and documented the entire process on TikTok. Now she has more than 3.5 million followers on the platform, where she showcases design projects, educates her audience about different design styles, and offers simple DIY design ideas.
Chicago-based home decor blogger Kyla Herbes has been blogging since 2013, but her TikTok account took off in 2020 when she participated in One Room Challenge and shared her design process on her page. She specializes in blending modern and vintage decor and offers quick styling tips and showcases finds from her vintage shopping trips.
A past Showroom of the Year winner, Village Home Stores is using TikTok to showcase completed kitchen, bath and lighting projects, all set to catchy music. Before and after videos with voiceovers give more details about the projects.