TikTok Launches Follow Me for SMBs
This week, TikTok publicized the launch of Follow Me, a free program to help smaller companies use the platform to grow their businesses.
The Follow Me program provides small businesses with coaching from other small businesses and TikTok pros, exclusive learning opportunities, and resources to help them get set up, create great content, engage their audiences, and drive sales. The company is touting Follow Me as "your personal guide to starting and growing your business on TikTok."
"Small businesses around the world are finding transformative success on TikTok, and you can, too. You'll hear expert tips and tricks from many of them in Follow Me, but here's their simple secret: they've learned to tell their story in creative, engaging ways to TikTok's massive and dynamic community of users. This community is waiting to discover new products and services just like yours, so let's get started," TikTok says on its website.
For many in the marketing community, the move by TikTok to reel in more small businesses is no surprise; nor is the fact that many small businesses are looking at TikTok as a way to promote themselves. Among them is Alexa Kilroy, head of brand at Triple Whale, an ecommerce platforms provider.
"It's no surprise to see TikTok launch its new Follow Me program for small businesses. Many [direct-to-consumer] brand owners view TikTok as something of a blue ocean, and they've been diverting an ever-growing share of their ad spend toward the platform. Among Triple Whale users, we've seen a 100 percent growth in TikTok ad spend from Q4 2021 to Q1 2022, and while that growth has been noticeable among brands of all sizes, it's been most pronounced for smaller businesses with an annual revenue of $1 million to $5 million," she says.
Kilroy sees several reasons for this:
For one, the average cost per impression is more than 50 percent lower on TikTok than on Facebook, "meaning that brands that invest creative and performance marketing resources in TikTok stand to win big," she says. "There's also massive opportunity for brands to test ad creative for free by posting organically then backing the asset with ad spend after they see the desired engagement and interest."
TikTok, Kilroy adds, "is aware of the impacts that other core paid social platforms, like Facebook, have had on small to medium-sized brands. From what we see with our over 4,500 clients, it's natural that the platform has focused its efforts to invest more time in supporting the smaller brands looking to shift their ad spend."