3 Secrets to Launching a TikTok Brand Account

Ali Afnan

A guide to crushing it on TikTok as a brand from a content creator and brand marketer.

After helping launch and grow several TikTok brand accounts, I’ve grown my own account to close to 30K followers in about 6 months, where I talk about growth and marketing.  I’m a DTC brand builder and consultant by day - so I get obsessive in trying to find patterns in what works on TikTok to help e-commerce brands grow.

After scouring the platform for the best accounts, here are three massive takeaways and questions you need to ask before launching an organic TikTok presence for your brand.

How to Organically Grow a TikTok Business Account

Although lots of the tips and tricks can be the same for growing personal accounts, there are more considerations you will want to consider before slinging Tiktok videos for your brand, with 1 central question that may affect if you read the rest of this article.

1. Ask yourself, "Does your content belong on TikTok?"

If your TikTok strategy includes pumping content from Instagram or other social media channels through repurposing software and blasting it onto TikTok… you will have trouble finding success on TikTok for your business account. Every platform's content has its own unique look and feel, and consumers immediately pick up on if a video feels “repurposed”.

You must focus on each platform in isolation and craft a separate strategy exclusive for TikTok. Do not copy/paste content from Instagram! Focus on using TikTok’s native text, edit your videos in-app, and on a weekly basis, obsessively pay attention to what trends are blowing up on the app.

Crocs TikTok account screenshot

For example, Crocs has done an exceptional job at making their content appear seamlessly on someone’s TikTok FYP (for you page) while fitting into a cohesive marketing strategy. Remember that nobody will seek out your TikTok business accounts and watch all your videos through your account page. General TikTok users are consuming everything on the FYP, and in the FYP, if the content feels hyper-produced or inauthentic to the platform, it will bounce, leaving no one to find your TikTok profile. Crocs have embraced TikTok meme culture beautifully.

Like Crocs, you should not be forced to define your own TikTok trends, hop on trends super early, and use self-deprecating memes, effects, filters, and sounds that real creators use. The moral of the story is never to make TikTok videos feel like ads. Please don’t assume that because a video did well on Instagram, it belongs on TikTok, and your main focus should be to get your video to the FYP.

TikTok Business Strategy Checklist

  • Organic & native TikTok content strategy
  • Use TikTok native text and fonts
  • Quickly hop on trends, don't overthink it
  • Lean into self-deprecating humor
  • Make TikToks not ads

2. How to Hack TikTok Watch Time by Storytelling

If you’ve been bold enough to click into your TikTok video analytics - you’ve probably been crushed by the watch-time chart. People on TikTok have the attention span of a goldfish. Since most people won’t make it past the first few frames of your video, TikTok videos should be incredibly fast-paced.

Two Decisions your Target Audience makes while watching your video

Most viewers make two decisions during a video that will determine if they will consume your content rather than scrolling past.  Understanding this can unlock exponential performance for your organic brand content on TikTok.

  1. Are they Hooked - If the hook isn’t catchy or compelling, you’re going to lose about 80% of your viewers within the first 3 seconds. The most successful hooks use intrigue, conflict, and tension to “hook” the viewer in and make them decide to continue watching.
  2. Do they Care - Although you may have hooked the viewer with clickbait, that doesn't mean you own their attention for the rest of the video. The 5-8 seconds following the hook is when the viewer makes their second decision to continue watching. The most compelling way to lock them in for the rest of your video is to start telling a story. People naturally gravitate and become emotionally invested in understanding the outcome.

Once you’ve captured your viewers for ten seconds, and they’ve decided that they are hooked and they care about the outcome ... chances are, that person is committed to watching the rest of your video.

The Best Storytelling Brand on TikTok

Mid Day Squares tells the most captivating stories about their business on their TikTok. They masterfully craft hooks that make you excited to keep watching and use top-notch storytelling to keep you engaged all the way through. Their TikTok videos feel more like a docu-series or a reality show than they do ads or branded content. 

MidDay Squares TikTok account screenshot

Examples of Good Storytelling from MidDay Squares

3. Show our products in action

The beauty of TikTok is that you can use your video content to test angles you don’t have space to communicate on your landing pages while being one of the most visual social media platforms. This means that for most products, you can communicate the use cases of your products along with the problems they solve.

How Chamberlain Coffe Sells on TikTok

Chamberlain Coffee TikTok account screenshot

Chamberlain Coffee uses a really cool content strategy as well by showing her products in action. The coffee itself is cool, but showing recipes to make fancy lattes is even cooler! The instructional format, showcasing recipes, makes it easy to binge all the videos all the way through. It's also a super shareable format of the video and probably drives a ton of sales… because the recipes insinuate that you NEED the products to make the drinks. Making your products look and feel like an ‘experience’ that makes your life better is a major win!

Unfortunately, when you share your products on TikTok, you should be ready for questions, criticism, and doubts from potential customers. Luckily as a TikTok creator, you can lean into this to create content that overcomes these objections.

Answering product objections with your TikTok business accounts

Athletic Greens TikTok account screenshot

Use your account as a hub to answer every imaginable question, concern, or objection about your product or brand. Athletic Greens executes this very well. Instead of trendy lifestyle videos, most of their content is focused on answering FAQ’s. The TikTok social team at Athletic goes through their comments, find out what real people are asking them, and answers the questions through a video. For example, they made a post answering "why are you so much more expensive than competitors" by pointing out the quality and quantity of their ingredients, and won everyone over in the comments!

Like any social platform, this is always evolving, but these are my top three tips for getting off on the right foot when trying to launch and scale your TikTok Brand Account organically. If all of this sounds like gibberish, or if you don’t have the time to start posting amazing TikTok content, I'd love to help you! Shoot me a message at ali@sublime.house with “FOREPLAY” as the subject line and your TikTok link in the body (if you have one), and I’ll help you strategize your TikTok content for free!

Ali Afnan
Head of Growth @ Jack Health
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