No doubt your kids are experts at TikTok and you’ve probably—at least—seen global viral videos like 2020’s lockdown dance challenge to the Weekend’s Blinding Lights and the famous baked feta pasta recipe (because of it, grocery stores around the world ran out of feta cheese.)
Since its 2017 creation by Chinese company ByteDance, TikTok has become the world’s fastest growing video-sharing platform. At last count, it had almost two billion users in 154 countries, recently achieved over one billion active monthly users and over 130 million active users in the United States alone (here’s a full breakdown of TikTok statistics).
It wasn’t seriously on my radar until now because it definitely skews younger in terms of social media platforms. Its micro-doses of entertainment see teens and tweens create and share videos—often challenges like choreography—that last just 15 seconds. I know, right? Perfect for gen-Zers with their short attention spans. Not much for me to see here.
But my attention was caught when TikTok published insights that showed a new type of TikTok influencer is emerging: more than one in four TikTok users is a mother.
Ha. Interesting, given its famous youth appeal. The full picture is even more so: TikTok has more female users than male and a broader user spectrum than you might imagine. So, what the data showcases is the platform’s marketing to moms potential, thanks to the app now reaching an older, more influential (and wealthier) audience.
For instance, last Mother’s Day TikTok surveyed users, asking them which products moms were looking for on the platform. Top of the list was vacations, followed by jewelry, handbags, cars and sunglasses.
The other insight I found interesting from a marketing to moms perspective is that TikTok also says mothers on the platform are heavy mobile phone users: “They’re more likely to see your content through a phone screen, and they often discover brands through social media. Marketers should take notice and reach them with immersive advertising in mobile-first environments for maximum impact.”
To date, videos with the hashtag #mumlife and #momlife have amassed a whopping 3.3 billion views, according to Marie Claire. And #tiktokmum and #tiktokmom are at 177.4 million. That means the app’s largest user base—those under 24—are actively seeking content made by moms.
What does all that mean? It means brands should be highly aware that this is a mammoth and growing social media platform which should be on your radar and considered a valuable marketing tool once you’ve perfected Facebook and Instagram to reach and engage moms.
Around the world, there are already moms heavily engaged on TikTok—some of them famous. What attracts them? Unlike the perfection vibe of Instagram, TikTok is about having fun, being silly, perhaps a little vulnerable and definitely authentic. And as all business owners know, authenticity sells.
Jessica Alba and Courteney Cox have tried their hand at TikTok dances, and uber mom marketer Reese Witherspoon—best known these days as the head of production company Hello Sunshine—is on TikTok, which is a litmus test. If she will come, others will follow. Witherspoon made her debut in 2021, asking teenage son Deacon to teach her “what TikTok is.” Exactly. Great funnel for what she wants to show next.
TikTok is an intriguing opportunity for your business to be noticed by your target audience while community building, engaging with the audience and generating conversations. For example, it’s an ideal platform for giveaways.
According to social media specialists Wallaroo, you should investigate a TikTok strategy if your brand’s target audience includes anyone between 13 and 60. It says a 2022 vertical strategy should include TikTok because the platform includes links and commerce URLs in your profile and videos, so “not only is the organic reach on the platform huge, but you can also drive meaningful traffic to your website.” (Click here to find out how the TikTok algorithm works.)
Around the globe, beauty, fashion, food, entertainment and travel brands are all creating and showcasing a content strategy to get results—and some are smashing it. Eyebrow Queen’s sharing of tutorials and product reviews are really effective at generating attention and sales for the eyebrow product brand. Online fashion retailer ASOS has doubled down on its established social media presence on TikTok to share outfit inspiration and behind-the-scenes sneak peeks.
Lounge Underwear focuses its content creation on sharing office scenes and collection launches, and powerhouse Italian brand Gucci uses short TikTok films to show celebrities wearing their clothes and demonstrate how their garments are made.
Coffee chain Starbucks announces new flavours via Tiktok, French cookware manufacturer Le Creuset shares tutorials and recipe ideas and British high-end homewares firm The White Company makes how-to and styling videos. Netflix changes and mixes scenes from its popular shows.
Elf Cosmetics, Guess, Crocs and Target all have strong TikTok identities. But you don’t have to be a big brand to go viral. Last year, as tourism died amid lockdowns, employees at Viennese boutique hotel Madgas Hotel made a series of entertaining videos. One reached two million people.
The key takeaway? As a platform, TikTok is growing fast and exponentially. It gives brands the opportunity to inform and entertain a ton of potential customers via organic growth and meaningful traffic. And moms love it. Check it out.
Katrina is a Marketing and Partnership Strategist, Best-selling Author, Podcast Host and Board Advisor. Katrina is the founder of Partnership Mastery where she mentors brands and executes to successfully identify and negotiate meaningful, strategic partnerships. She is also the founder of Marketing to Mums, a marketing and research consultancy helping brands sell more effectively to the world’s most powerful consumer, moms. www.marketingtomums.com.au and https://partnershipmastery.global Katrina has been named the best speaker at M2Moms® and is a frequent contributor to this site.