June 26, 2020 Jaclyn Bickerton
Challenges are one of the biggest trends on TikTok, and inventive brands are already using them to fast-track their growth and reach millions of users. TikTok challenges can take almost any form but they must be easy to replicate by the masses and must be intriguing enough for your audience to want to participate in.
Challenges are a unique way to get your audience to create user generated content that aligns with your brand. When TikTok challenges are done right, they tend to gain traction and spread like wildfire on the app. They’re one of the most engaging tactics you can use on the platform. Your brand can utilize them to build awareness, create relatable content, and grow your TikTok community.
TikTok challenges are driven by both organic and sponsored content – you’ll see branded challenges like Colgate’s #MakeMomSmile challenge and organic content, like the #LevelUp challenge. As you can see below, the #MakeMomSmile challenge has garnered 4.6 BILLION views.
Similar to Instagram hashtags, TikTok hashtags help users share and find content.
They’re also how a lot of the niche communities are built on TikTok. Using a branded hashtag to label your TikTok challenge will it make it easier for TikTok users to share their take on the trend and also make any challenge-related content much easier to find in the TikTok app — a key for brand awareness and discoverability.
In the planning stages of a TikTok challenge, it’s crucial that you determine two things: what your audience will be able to participate in, and why they’ll want to get involved.
Make sure your challenge is easy to do, entertaining, and most importantly, inclusive and accessible for all. A great example of this is Colgate. They created the #MakeMomSmile hashtag in celebration of Mother’s Day. The challenge itself is pretty open ended — the call to action was for TikTok users is to make their mother or mother-figure in their life smile, whether it be breakfast in bed, a dance-off challenge or getting her flowers.
Branded TikTok challenges give your audience the opportunity to be creative in a fun and collaborative way, while bringing awareness to your brand.
To build awareness around your challenge, try engaging with TikTok-specific influencers to help create an surge. This seems to be the most effective route taken by brands that have been successful with challenges on TikTok. By partnering with popular creators your can reach a brand-new audience on TikTok by tapping into that creator’s already loyal and engaged following.
TikTok challenges are an opportunity for your brand to reach a new audience, build your brand awareness, foster loyalty and get people to create fun, engaging content.
If you’ve got the budget for it, there’s the option to take your challenge to the next level with TikTok ads. TikTok’s branded hashtag challenge ads get people thinking, moving, and creating. They’re a strong asset for audience engagement and building brand reputation within the app. TiKTok Ads get prime real estate in your TikTok feed – a small “skip ad” button appears in the top right corner of the otherwise unrecognizable ad format.
A good example of this is Guess’ #InMyDenim branded hashtag challenge. Guess partnered with influencers to create on trend TikTok videos to go alongside the challenge and made a huge impact with their 6-day challenge.
The objective was to present a confident, sexy and adventurous brand image and drive awareness during the back-to-school shopping season for millennials and Gen Z consumers. Guess posted several official videos accompanied by Bebe Rexha’s “I’m a Mess,” an appropriate song that was a perfect fit for the challenge and catered to TikTok’s style.
On the first day, Guess launched a Brand Takeover on the splash screen to increase awareness of the challenge campaign. Concurrently, Guess released 4 influencer-performed videos to demo the idea. Letting content creators do their work, the dramatic yet easy-to-imitate video stories instantly garnered enormous attention and inspired 1,629 user-generated videos. The campaign went viral, gaining millions of video views, positive comments, and user videos showcasing their best look in denim.
The campaign results included:
– Over 5,550 user-generated videos
– 10.5 million video views
– 14.3% engagement rate; and
– over 12,000 additional followers for Guess’ TikTok .
The promotion resonated with consumers and considerably boosted brand affinity. For more inspiration, check out 15 brands that are killing it on TikTok.
Jaclyn Bickerton, Oakville, Ontario, June 2020