Catching the eye of businesses around the world, TikTok ads are the latest choice for businesses to promote their products and services.

In the wake of COVID-19, the digital world has never been more in-demand or more competitive. Nowadays, if you would like to conduct business online without a marketing budget, there is little chance of visibility for your brand’s products or services. TikTok ads are the latest way for growing businesses to reach their target audience to gain leads and sales for their products and services. 

It’s undeniable that TikTok is growing rapidly right now, with over 800 million active accounts worldwide. This figure demonstrates the huge potential to make money via TikTok advertising. You may think that it’s a case of whoever grabs the opportunity first, wins. That’s not strictly true because even if you’re late to the game, if armed with a better strategy and the ability to act swiftly, you can easily gain market share. 

In this article we will introduce you to TikTok ads, explain the different formats, how they work, and which businesses are most suitably matched to this style of advertising.

What is TikTok?

TikTok is the most popular social media platform nowadays, largely due to the fact that people use it to ‘kill time’ on the days when they cannot do anything or go anywhere, like during the COVID-19 quarantine situation. In reality, TikTok is a social media platform that has been around for quite some time and has gained popularity with teenagers. However, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, the platform became a hit worldwide with people of all ages, as made clear by the 1.5 billion+ Google Play Store and Apple Store downloads. 

TikTok was first developed by Zhang Yiming, a Chinese man who worked as a software engineer for a company called ‘ByteDance’. Formerly, the short-video application was not called TikTok, but was designed and launched for Chinese-use only, under the name DouYin (抖音). It specifically targeted under 24 years old. DouYin grew rapidly and had over 100 million active users in 2017.

In September 2017, ByteDance launched the application DouYin globally under the name TikTok. That was the beginning of the popularity spike for the application which is now well-known all over the world. Both applications have the exact same functions, the only difference is the name used in the Chinese market (DouYin) and the international market (TikTok). 

How are TikTok ads different from ads on other social media channels? 

With its unique function and content style of 15 second – 1 minute videos, TikTok is innovative and challenging for online marketers. TikTok is popular among the Gen Y – Z population who use the internet daily, giving businesses a clear picture of the target market opportunity. The results may not differ much from the other platforms, but TikTok focuses on two things: reaching the target group (Reach) and creating engagement (Engagement).


What ad formats are available on TikTok?

We will divide the ad formats by objective:

1: Reaching the target market

Brand Takeover: This is considered the most accessible ad format. If a brand or business is already running a marketing campaign then this ad format would be a good fit. For example, when you want to remind the target audience of your campaign message or make them aware of your promotion or campaign, before they get to their Feed.

Top View: This ad format can create both Reach and Traffic to attract people to your website. These ads are capable of generating millions of Impressions per day. 

In-Feed Ads: These ads pop up between the video content on your Feed. They are focused on Reach and can also include a call to action to increase conversions.

2: Building interaction and engagement

Hashtag Challenge: You will almost certainly have seen a # challenge before as many brands use this format for their TikTok ads. These campaigns challenge viewers to participate in activities to win prizes. The success of the ad format largely depends on how viral the challenge becomes. This type of ad undoubtedly requires lots of creativity but if successful and the challenge goes viral, the engagement you’ll receive could be massive. 

Branded Effect: TikTok is not just an application for short videos, it also has an Effect feature that allows brands to create their own effects. This type of ad is a worthwhile investment in the long run, since it will create endless publicity for as long as the Effect remains of interest and is being used frequently. Therefore it can provide amazing value for a one-time investment.  

What purpose do TikTok ads serve?

The purpose of TikTok ads can be categorised into 3 different groups with 5 objectives to choose from:

  1. Awareness (Reach)
  2. Consideration, including Traffic, App Installs and Video Views
  3. Conversions

Which businesses are TikTok Ads most suitable for?

Actually, no matter what products you sell, or what services you provide, you can advertise on TikTok. But if you want to know which businesses see the best results from TikTok ads, we can offer some insights.  

TikTok ads work best for businesses that target the general population, with a focus on young people in the Gen Y – Z age range. They allow you to build brand awareness and interact with consumers without focusing solely on sales. TikTok ads suit brands that want to build a friendly, approachable image that the users can trust before they eventually become customers. 

How much do TikTok ads cost?

As for the cost of running a TikTok ad campaign, the fee starts at about $500 or approximately THB 15,XXX per campaign, but that’s just the starting price. The average fee for each format is: 

Brand Takeover 

100% SOV costs around $19,200, or approximately THB 599,818 per day

25% SOV costs around $4,800, or approximately THB 149,954 per da

In-Feed Ads

Brand Premium minimum starts at $800, or approximately THB 25,024 per day

One Day Max average fee is $9,500, or approximately THB 296,785 per day

Hashtag Challenge 

Hashtag Challenge costs around $50,000, or approximately THB 1,562,025 for 6 days

Hashtag Challenge Pro costs around $60,000, or approximately THB 1,874,430 for 6 days

Branded Effect

2D costs around $20,000, or approximately THB 624,810 per Effect

2D Pro costs around $35,000, or approximately THB 1,093,418 for 6 days 

3D costs around $55,000, or approximately THB 1,718,228 for 6 days

Gamified costs around $55,000, or approximately THB 1,718,228 for 6 days

***Information updated on October 21, 2020

As you can see, the cost of running an advertising campaign on TikTok is high so it may not be suitable for a small business that has a limited marketing budget. 

If you’ve read this far and are interested in marketing via TikTok Ads, you can create your own advertisement campaigns in the same way you would Facebook ads. Start by creating an account, then create a TikTok ad campaign, choosing your desired format and target audience.

If you prefer to have an expert manage the campaign for you, you can hire an agency that is a TikTok partner, like Primal. We have the knowledge and tools to help make your campaign a success, and we make our customers’ demands and goals our priority.