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The 7 Steps to Mastering TikTok Influencer Marketing

The 7 Steps to Mastering TikTok Influencer Marketing

Last Updated:  
March 18, 2024

We all know the importance of TikTok and how it can really support your marketing strategies. We all know that it has 1 billion users and is being compared to streaming services over a social media app. We all know that users spend on average 95+ minutes per day on the app. I’ve talked about this in TikToK Marketing 101.

On top of brands creating content to help support their business/product, they are also tapping into using influencers to help with a multitude of things like…

  • Brand awareness
  • Brand perception
  • Consideration
  • Conversions
  • Leads
  • Content generation

…just to name a few. In a world where content is king and the amount of content is overwhelming, it is a no-brainer to tap into influencers/content creators who live and breathe the app.

What is TikTok influencer marketing?

TikTok influencers have really mastered the platform. Not only did they create their following by understanding their purpose on the app and mastering it, but they know what their community wants. They are experts at creating engaging and entertaining content that resonates with their audience. They have the ability to reach a large number of potential eyes for your business with an audience that they essentially built from the ground up.

TikTok Made Me Buy It

Another reason why businesses are starting to put their trust into this app is because of the way that users are using Tik Tok in terms of searching and purchasing. People are going to TikTok to search for things that they normally would search on Google. They are doing this because they are seeing real-life reviews and examples on what they want to know. This then leads to purchasing things because they trust their peers on the app with the reviews. #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt

As you can see, TikTok is a powerful app. It’s real life, authentic, entertaining, and helpful. This is why businesses are running the platform to use influencers to make a splash on the FYP.

Convinced yet? Let’s get into the details.

So…now what?

Alright, you’ve made it this far, yay! You want to know where to begin because you want to do your first TikTok influencer marketing campaign. Follow these steps and we will get you there.

Step 1: Determine what you want to promote with TikTok influencer marketing

Like your social strategy, this is your North Star. You have to figure out what you’re promoting to help lead the ship. It could be a LTO, a new product launch, a new BRAND. It could be something more evergreen like an always-on brand ambassador campaign to create buzz.

For Auntie Anne’s, we’ve used influencers to help promote new LTOs. But we also have used influencers to help promote moments on our marketing calendar (like football season or March Madness).

Step 2: Determine your audience on TikTok

Knowing how to answer this is extremely important. There are 1 BILLION users on this app. When you talk to everyone, you don’t talk to anyone. It is super important to know the audience you want to talk to so you can work with the right influencers who have a hold on those users.

It can be as broad as gen-z who like make-up or as niche as people interested in knitting. That is the beauty of TikTok!

Step 3: Nail down budget to support yourTikTok influencer campaign

A little can go a long way on TikTok. Working with smaller creators doesn’t mean you will get smaller views. Tik Tok pushes quality content to what they think you want to see, so variability is a lot more accessible. Heck, I posted a Tik Tok video on my personal account and it got 47,000 views and I have only 200 followers!

TikTok focuses on the content, not the creator posting it.So if working with smaller creators is all you have budget for, DO IT!

If having a bigger budget is something you can provide, that is also great. You can work with creators that have worked with brands in the past, who can ensure they can create quality content. One thing they cannot predict is how many views they get. So you really need to focus on the quality of content and engagement they get from their followers. More to come on this.

Step 4: Find TikTok influencers

For this section, I am going to speak from my experience. There are lots of ways to source influencers. From old school stalking on the app to using third-party influencer marketing resources. It really depends on your bandwidth, budget, and experience with working with influencers.

For Auntie Anne’s and Jamba, we do use a mix of old school stalking and third-party resources, but I think the best work is done by finding people via the app. How do you do that? Let’s get into it.

First, are there any people that you personally follow + enjoy that you would want to work with? That is always my first thought. I go through my FYP and people I follow and make a list of those that I think could fit.

Because you know what you’re promoting and who you want to talk to, you can search terms in TIk Tok that can help find the top videos, users, sounds, hashtags, etc. This is a great place to see who is coming to the top for your specific niche.

From there, you can click on an influencer profile and click the down arrow to see suggested accounts to follow. This is a great way to find similar influencers.

TikTok has a tool called TikTok Creator Marketplace, which is a tool that allows you to see an influencer's reach, views, demographics, etc. You must register under your brand account and be approved to use the tool.

Bonus step: how to choose from your list

Now that you have your list of influencers that you potentially want to work with, it’s really important to get familiar with the type of content they make and how their audience reacts to it.

Here are things to look for:

  1. Views: how many views do they average on each video? Do they consistently get double digit views? Do they consistently get the same amount of views? These are trends you have to keep an eye out for if you are going to invest in them because remember, they can’t guarantee views from an organic post.
  2. Comment section: do they have people commenting on their videos? Are they positive? This is so important because this is the community building aspect on their page. You want to work with people who actually have an influence and you can tell that by their comment section.
  3. Have they worked with other brands before? This is important because this means they know what to expect when working with businesses!

Step 5: Write a brief for your TikTok influencers

Before reaching out to your list of influencers, you have to be ready to brief them with the work you want them to do! I’ve gone through this in more detail here.

Step 6: Outreach and approval process for TikTok influencer marketing

Now that you have your brief & your list of influencers you want to work with, you are ready to outreach. Once you get in contact with the influencer whether it’s through a third-party tool or in the DMs, first, you have to see if they want to work with you, if they like your business, and have the time for the project. Once they say yes, this is the time to set out expectations and requirements through your brief and solidify the deal with a contract. You also have to have the conversation around prices for the content and what it all includes. There is room to negotiate, but influencers usually have a pricing structure on what they can create and provide for you.

It is very important to have contracts in place to make sure every party is responsible for their end of the project and that everyone is protected.

Now that your TikTok influencers are signed and sealed, it’s time to deliver.

The most important thing when approving content is making sure that the content follows the brief. You have to make sure all of the notes in the brief were hit. Whether that’s saying certain things, showing certain products, etc. You also have to trust that the influencers created this content with their audience in mind. Remember, they are the masters at the craft and know what types of videos perform well on their pages. Let them be creative and let them add their personality to the content to ensure it performs well. Authenticity is KEY when it comes to Tik Tok content.

Step 7: Was your TikTok influencer campaign a success?

What was your purpose for using influencers? Was it brand awareness? Conversions? Engagement? Ask your influencers to send them their analytics within 2 weeks of the end of the campaign to see how it performed. You can also track against other campaigns they’ve done in the past to see how it stacks up to other sponsored content.

The beauty of Tik Tok is that content builds and builds over time. If your sponsored content was at 50K views at the end of the campaign, check it a couple weeks after. I bet it grew over time and that’s a win baby!

Measure and amplify your influencer efforts with Affluencer Hub

Not only does Triple Whale help you visualize, measure, and optimize influencer marketing performance, but with Affluencer Hub, you can track, manage and analyze all your affluencers (influencers & affiliates) across every platform using a combination of Discount Codes, the Triple Pixel and a Post Purchase Survey.

Grab a call with one of our strategists today and see how Triple Whale can help amplify your influencer marketing performance.

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