TikTok has announced a range of new promotions, ad tools and education sessions to mark National Small Business Week - or National Small Business Month, as TikTok is calling it - which will help SMBs make better use of the platform, and provide more opportunities for promotion via short video clips.
The main, over-arching element of TikTok's new push is a new push to help amplify SMBs via the #SupportSmallBusiness hashtag.
As explained by TikTok:
"Throughout the month of May, the TikTok community can discover and show some love for their favorite small business using #SupportSmallBusiness. Business owners can also share their experience and give us a peek into their world. From packing orders and behind-the-scenes tutorials to business advice and motivation for the tough times, we are excited to see more business owners and their supporters interact with each other on TikTok."
TikTok says that many small businesses have seen massive success through viral TikTok clips, including Artesana Soaps in Arkansas, which was able to survive the pandemic due to its TikTok presence.
##Thank ##you. We would not still be here without you!! ❤️????❤️ ##artesanasoaps ##soap ##handmade ##asmr ##satisfying ##pandemic ##covid19 ##smallbusiness ##love♬ Happiest Year - Jaymes Young
Of course, not every business can simply create popular TikTok content, but through promotions like #SupportSmallBusiness and #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt, TikTok's hoping to expand those opportunities to more businesses, and improve SMB discovery through the app.
In terms of ad tools, TikTok has also announced a new partnership with Nielsen which will enable businesses to utilize Nielsen's Designated Market Area (DMA) geo-targeting for their campaigns, which facilitates more direct focus based on advanced segmentation.
"DMA geo-targeting provides businesses who want to reach customers and users in the United States with more granular location targeting options, tapping into more opportunities across enterprise, mid-market, and SMB businesses. DMA geo-targeting uses standardized geographic areas so businesses can share more relevant, interesting and impactful content with their customers in geo-targeted areas, saving them time and resources."
So it's essentially location targeting, but with the added insight from Nielsen, which enhances the geographic data, and will help improve the accuracy of TikTok's listings.
That could help improve the focus of your TikTok campaigns, and zero in on more specific markets and audience subsets, which could have specific benefits for SMBs within their local regions.
And finally, TikTok is also launching a new TikTok for Business Club on Clubhouse, which will see the platform host a series of interviews with SMBs that have seen success on the platform.
As per TikTok:
"The conversations will take place every Friday throughout May at 11:00 am EST, and they will give small business owners across the country the chance to learn how to get started on TikTok, find their communities and thrive. The first conversation, From Main Street to Mainstreaming will feature four small business owners: Marlene Robinson of Mrs. Robinson's Tea in Kennett Square, PA, Tina Sapia of Sapia's Barber Shop in Clearwater, FL, Javier Juarez of Jay's Fresh Pressed Lemonade in Parlier, CA, and Glenn Poole of Izola's Country Cooking in Hinesville, GA. We hope you can join the conversation."
If you're looking to get a better handle on the platform, and the opportunities for your business, it may well be worth tuning into these discussions, and hearing how other brands have launched and maximized their TikTok profiles.
As TikTok continues to grow, it's also gaining more momentum from a marketing standpoint, with more businesses looking to get in on the act, and reach new audiences through short video clips. As noted, that's not necessarily easy, and it does take a level of platform knowledge and understanding to get right, but for those that are able to harness TikTok, the benefits can be significant.
With the platform looking to boost SMBs this month, it could be a good time to re-investigate your opportunities, while TikTok also has a Small Business Resource Center, which includes a range of case studies, creative tools and explainers, which can provide more understanding and insight.
You can also check out TikTok's ad library tool to get a better understanding of effective promotions.