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TikTok is the booming young social media platform bringing new stars to fame. In light of this fact, it only makes sense that brands are taking advantage of this unsaturated platform to extend their influencer marketing campaigns. TikTok ads are showing remarkable results. Whether it’s sending free product in hopes of a review, or starting a trending dance challenge or hashtag, TikTok ads are the exciting space to innovate and engage your target audience.
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Types of TikTok Ads
When using TikTok for digital marketing, there are a few different options to choose from depending on which fits best with your brand’s style.
- Pre-roll ads: Videos that play once users open the app
- In-feed ads: Videos that appear as users scroll in their feed
- Hashtag challenges: Promoted videos that encourage user participation using a custom hashtag
- Branded effects: Synonymous with Instagram and Snapchat filters – a custom filter for creators to use in videos that features brand-specific information
Here are some of the best TikTok ads and how well they performed.
Best of TikTok Ads
We’re starting off strong with a company that’s had multiple successes with TikTok ads, in numerous forms. They’ve conquered with David Dobrik and the #ChipotleLidFlip challenge and excelled with an activation around #GuacDance, both starting a trending hashtag! Building on the TikTok dance sensation, the latter featured Brent Rivera and Loren Gray and collected 532,388,592 views and 24,714 posts. Overall, the campaign drew 250,000 user-generated video submissions and 430 million video starts during its six-day span. Chipotle challenged their audience to dance for free guac leading to record sales – converting views into customers.
Chipotle’s annual #Boorito Halloween offer, reduced prices for customers who ordered in a spooky outfit, had similar success. Another challenge with a clear call to action where users posted a video showcasing their Halloween costume transformations and included a custom sound bite that Chipotle created for the campaign. If a bargain burrito bowl wasn’t enough, Chipotle was also offering the top five posts with the hashtag free burritos for a year! The campaign activated influencers Brittany Broski, Zach King, and Jiffpom.
The #Boorito tag garnered 3.6 billion views with the help of these viral influencers. Broski’s promotion alone achieved 160K likes in her TikTok ad.
2. Sony Music
Sony Music’s Atrevete TikTok Campaign capitalized on the platform’s musical success to promote Nicky Jam X Sech Song, Atrévete, across Spain, Argentina, and Italy. They activated 12 influencers to each create one TikTok ad video. Altogether, the #ShowSomeLoveChallenge reached a combined 19.9M followers, engaged 8M users, raised 1.2M likes, resulted in 10.3K user-generated videos and achieved an engagement rate of 6%.
3. Sony Pictures
Sony Pictures teamed up with the power of TikTok ads to promote their new thriller “Escape Room.” The campaign targeted international audiences with an event hosted in Madrid inviting 38 influencers and content creators from over 20 countries to record their experiences attempting to solve puzzles that unlocked escape rooms based on those shown in the movie.
More than 75 pieces of content were shared across their TikTok followers. The TikTok creators participated in a massive scavenger hunt to Madrid’s famous landmarks and included the magician Magic Singh, comedian Karol Konk and makeup artist and body painter Vicky Banham.
4. Charlie’s Angels
Another entertainment brand discovering the power of TikTok ads, Charlie’s Angels rebooted with a campaign focused around the movie soundtrack song Don’t Call Me Angel. Activating over 15 influencers on the platform, they posted videos of skits, dancing and lip-syncing to the hit song. Among those were Rebecca Zamola, Zoe Laverne, and Lauren Godwin. #CharliesAngelsUnite accrued over 4.2B views and 129.2K user-generated video uploads also using the film’s feature song.
Kraft Heinz’s Kool-Aid launched its first TikTok campaign with a hashtag challenge and the chance to win $10,000. Themed around the holiday season, users were encouraged to post videos of themselves enjoying the holiday spirit with the hashtag #OhYEAHChristmas.
The campaign was comprised of three videos featuring the rapper Lil Jon and the Kool-Aid Man to the @KoolaidManOfficial account. The target market of these TikTok ads was the younger audiences the platform caters to.
In addition to Lil Jon, additional influencers were activated to engage in the campaign, such as @Glitterandlazers with a following of 3.8M. Her post received over 1.3M views and 79.1K likes. Other influencers included @kidrl, @nickandsienna, and @kingcamo_1, with a combined following of 9.1M on TikTok. Over 10K user-generated videos have emerged from the challenge, which lasted only 10 days.
The unicorn on the list, retail chain Kroger was the first company to participate in TikTok’s shoppable feature Hashtag Challenge Plus. It allows users to shop for sponsored products directly through the app with the associated hashtag.
Though this feature is still in its testing phase, campaign videos with #TransformUrDorm have amassed 876M views. Kroger partnered with four influencers: Joey Klaasen, Cosette Rinab, Mia Finney, and Victoria Bachlet– their collective follower count surpassing 13.8M. The campaign challenge asked users to post videos of their dorm transformations. Influencer uploads brought in 3M views, 252K likes, 1352 comments, and 1747 shares.
This campaign proved TikTok ads are a vital tool for reaching out to Gen Z audiences, a market that is quickly growing in importance, and especially the college-aged demographic.
Cosmetics brands have experienced just as much popularity on TikTok as with the other social media platforms of Instagram and YouTube. TooFaced partnered with influencer Kristen Hancher for an extended campaign with the hashtag #TooFacedPartner. The beauty brand’s partners post makeup routines to showcase the application of products. Hancher’s video was a transformation from makeup-free to full-faced through a tutorial of the products she used as a song played over top.
The success of the video racked up 1.8M views, 167K likes, 1816 comments, and 2219 shares. Other influencers have also partnered with the ongoing campaign: Victoria Lyn, Ewa Zawada, Laurie Elle, and Chloe Rose. Collectively, with Hancher, they bring 35M followers within TooFaced’s reach. With relatively low views so far at 9.4M, the brand expects the numbers to soar over the course of the long-term partnership as influencers share authentic content.
Another one of the world’s largest brands is turning to TikTok ads to increase revenue. Walmart engaged in its first TikTok campaign for Black Friday by encouraging users to post videos of themselves expressing their feelings on the retail holiday’s savings. Walmart activated six influencers for the #DealDropDance campaign, generating 3.6B views and reaching over 17M followers.
@OurFire’s promotion featured the pair dancing in a Walmart store and generated over 57K likes, 488 comments, and 739 shares from their 5.5M followers. Similar to Kroger’s intentions, Walmart is focusing its marketing efforts on TikTok ads to engage the Gen Z audience and convert them to loyal customers.
9. EA Sports
The video gaming company EA Sports has found its perfect match with influencer campaigns through TikTok ads. Their target demographics, Millennials and Gen Z, account for a large proportion of TikTok’s massive gaming subculture.
EA Sports promotes many of its games on TikTok. One such campaign they activated Brent Rivera for Apex Legends. The comedy skit he posted has almost reached 800K likes from his 19.7M followers.
Other promotions featured influencer Gil Croes with 22.6M followers, the 8th most popular influencer on the platform. Also a comedic skit, his video featured the game Plants vs. Zombies and amassed 505.1K likes and 1.9K comments.
10. Warner Music Group
Another musical activation, Warner Music Group promoted Justin Quiles DJ No Pare REMIX across Argentina and Mexico. Similar to Sony Music, six influencers were chosen to create one video each. The cumulative reach of this TikTok ad campaign was 8.3M followers and reached a total of over 1.5M in likes. The average engagement rate was 17% and user-generated videos exceeded 13.4K.