TikTok’s adding another option to facilitate more brand/creator partnerships with the launch of a new ‘Creative Exchange’ platform which will enable brands to pitch a campaign brief, which creators can then respond to and arrange sponsored content deals.
As explained by TikTok:
“TikTok Creative Exchange platform gives marketers instant access to a selection of the best TikTok creative partners in the industry, and enables efficient collaboration at scale. Our network of creative experts will help tailor and personalize content to improve ad performance on TikTok and drive business results.”
The process is fairly straightforward – brands sign-up for the Creative Exchange platform (available to brands with verified profiles), which then provides an overview of your pitching options, and how you want to outline your desired project.
As you can see here, you can choose from a range of campaign types, including ‘Story’ and ‘Product Intro’, which will provide more context as to what, exactly, you’re looking for from potential creative partners.
From there, you fill out a form which covers the basics of the brand/product for creators to assess.
Relevant creators, who can also sign up for the platform, will then receive email notifications about projects that fit their profile, from which they can accept a project and initiate direct exchange with the client. Creators will also be able to invite collaborators, and upload creative concepts directly to the platform, facilitating full communication and connection in the process. Brands will have the option as to whether they share data on live campaigns with creative partners.
It’s TikTok’s latest tool to help creators maximize their revenue potential through TikTok clips, with short-form video providing limited opportunity for direct ad placement, which puts the platform at a disadvantage in regards to effective monetization of user efforts. On YouTube, creators can include pre and mid-roll ads to make money from their work, but shorter clips make that more challenging, which generally leaves brand collaborations as the key tool in making money in the app.
TikTok knows that it needs to provide more monetization potential, otherwise its top stars will drift off to YouTube and Instagram instead, where they can make big bank, which is why it’s looking to add as many collaboration pathways as possible to facilitate sponsored content arrangements.
TikTok also has its Creator Marketplace, which enables brands to find and connect with potential creative partners, which is essentially the same, in principle, to this new platform, though the Creative Exchange platform is designed to make it even easier for brands and creators to partner up, by reducing the input required from brands to further streamline and simplify the process.
And given the creative focus of TikTok clips, it makes sense to help brands find creative assistance for their campaigns. Traditional, disruptive ad approaches won’t work on TikTok – brands generally need to take a more organic approach to their promotions, in order to fit into user feeds, and appeal to the TikTok audience.
Which, of course, requires some understanding of what the norms of the platform are, and what works - which is why collaboration options are a good way to go in building campaigns.
TikTok says that the first phase of TikTok Creative Exchange is now available to a limited set of advertisers – brands and creators can learn more, and join the pilot program (where available) here.