How Young Entrepreneurs Can Turn TikTok into a Business Tool!
TikTok is one of the most popular social media platforms for young people out there today. You already know that, right? But did you know that TikTok can be a valuable tool for your small business?
Imagine taking something you’re already familiar with and good at and making it work for you. TikTok has a lot more potential than just showing off your dance moves or sharing videos of your cat. By signing up for a separate business account on TikTok, you open a world of possibilities for finding new customers, retaining existing customers, and growing your brand. And that’s all part of your journey as a young entrepreneur. If you’re not already taking advantage of TikTok for your business, then these tips can help you get started.
CREATE A VARIETY OF CONTENT
Unlike your personal TikTok account, the videos you post for your business should include high-quality, thoughtful content that relates directly to your company even if it’s in a very small way. Some ideas for types of content you can include are:
- An introduction of who you are and what your business is all about
- How and why you became a young entrepreneur
- Shout-outs to your favorite mentors
- The story behind your brand – the name, logo, etc.
- Inspirational stories of other young entrepreneurs
- Your plans for college
- Showing how your product gets made or your services in action
- Questions for your audience
- Answers to common customer questions
- Interesting things you are learning as you travel your entrepreneurial journey
- Your pets as your company’s “mascot”
- Testimonials from satisfied clients
The sky’s the limit with the type of content you can post to your business’s TikTok account! Just remember to keep it appropriate (think about your kid sibling or grandma watching the video), keep it relevant to your field, and stay on brand.
BE MINDFUL OF YOUR AUDIENCE
TikTok is super popular with teens, but does that mean you have to cater to only the latest trends?
The best TikTok videos for business stay on top of the cultural zeitgeist while retaining a sort of timeless quality. How do you walk that line?
First, stay away from songs that include inappropriate language. Nothing screams “unprofessional” like tons of explicit or lewd lyrics. Save those for your personal videos.
Second, include content that will direct viewers back to your brand. Everyone loves cute pet videos, but how will that link back to your business? Show your pet “helping” you build your product or sitting on your lap while you work on your website. This way it’s cute, relevant, and directs viewers back to your brand.
Third, be mindful of your language. Using slang is fine but don’t overdo it. Trendy words and phrases at your school may not translate well to other teens across the country. Your audience wants to feel included, not confused.
Finally, be respectful. Don’t trash your competitors. Don’t trash anyone, really. Stay positive and optimistic.
MAKE TIKTOK PART OF YOUR MARKETING PLAN
Part of your work as a young entrepreneur is creating and implementing a marketing plan. This doesn’t have to be anything too detailed or fancy. In fact, right now it shouldn’t be more than a basic outline of how you will bring brand awareness to your target customers. But you should have at least an outline of where you will advertise, what you will say, and how often you will post.
If you are going to use TikTok for your business, then you’ll need to include it in your outline. This article has some great advice for how often to post on TikTok and what times of day work best for reaching the broadest audience.
Remember that you don’t have to record and post at the same time. Choose a day when you can give plenty of love and attention to your TikTok videos and record as many as you can in one go. That way they’re ready to post when you need them!
BE PREPARED TO GO VIRAL
Imagine the best-case scenario of your TikTok life: your video went viral!
What do you do now?
- Make a video acknowledging your viralness and thank your audience and supporters
- Include a call to action, such as inviting everyone to your website or Instagram
- Make and post a few similar videos to the one that went viral
- Repost links to the video all over your other business social media accounts
ENGAGE WITH YOUR AUDIENCE
Without feeding the trolls (just good online advice in general), make a point to respond to the positive feedback you get. When someone takes the time to comment, especially to congratulate or compliment you, acknowledge this and be gracious. Now is not the time for shyness or false modesty. Don’t know what to say? A simple, “Thank you!” will always do the trick.
The key takeaway here is that customers like to feel noticed and appreciated. It’s that one-on-one connection that will have them scrolling away from your TikTok video with warm feelings. They’ll be more likely to return, seek out your website, and tell their friends about your company.
Even if you aren’t a TikTok master, there are ways for you to use this platform to your advantage. Do you know someone who makes popular TikTok accounts? Ask them for help. Still unsure of yourself? There are plenty of business guides to TikTok you can use.
Remember to create a separate business account and always double and triple check which account you’re signed in to before you post. It takes less time (and causes far less stress) to take the time to post in the correct place than it does to have to go back and delete something you didn’t mean to upload.
Before long you’ll almost certainly have a solid following and plenty of new customers!
Will you be one of the next recipients of a Kantner Foundation college scholarship? If you are a Florida high school entrepreneur, click here to learn more!