TIKTOK IS THE FUTURE

BCM325

Raising brand awareness for your small business though TikTok part 1.

“The attention economy is competitive with brands vying for consumers’ time and engagement against countless creators, media outlets and digital activities… To break through the noise, brands must be more willing to invest in social and experiment on new platforms.”
Tressie Lieberman, Vice President of Digital Marketing and Off-Premise at Chipotle (Inside Hook, 2021).

Introduction:

Owning a small business is a lot of work. You are the ideas, the designer, the graphic designer, marketer, pr, photographer, packager and so much more. As an e-commerce business owner, I found that utilising social media is the core reason why my business sells in the online market.

My business is called Freckled Clothing Co. I am a team of 1 and my future goal is to utilise social media to increase brand awareness. I want to know how to use TikTok in the best way possible to find the right audience and to push for more views and further engagement. It appears that most articles believe that TikTok is the future of marketing, I want to personally see if that is true.

My TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@freckled.clothingco?

This experiment will come in 2 parts. This first blog post will talk about what TikTok is and how brands are utilising the platform. Once posted, I will be asking around on other platforms to find out the best ways to market myself on it. The second blog post will consist of me trying out these tips and tricks to see what works and what doesn’t. I will not be paying for any promotions or post boosting. I hope that this can be used as a guide for other small businesses who are looking to increase their brand awareness on social media platforms in the future. It will also have a great impact of the future of my business as a whole.  

TikTok:

If you have been living under a rock, TikTok is a short-form, video-sharing app that allows users to create and share 15-second or 60-second videos, on any topic (Influencer Marketing Hub, 2020).

Many brands and businesses are now understanding the potential of TikTok as an effective and even affordable marketing channel, despite it not having any space for traditional display ads. Trends come and go so fast these days. This time last year TikTok was slowly growing to be one of the most popular social media platforms. How am we suppose to keep up with the rapid growth of new platforms and new trends? I chose to focus on TikTok videos because video content is becoming a big marketing influence on consumers. When it comes to social media marketing, video content is being incorporated into almost every modern marketing strategy. 

According to a State of Video Marketing Survey by Wyzowl in 2020, part of the reason for the growing investment in videos is that consumers now watch an average of 16 hours of online video per week which is a 52 percent increase since 2018. Additionally, this survey found that eighty-six percent of people would like to see more video content from brands which puts TikTok very high in the potential consumer marketplace.

Youtube or TikTok?

So why not use Youtube instead? It incorporates video format, and it has been for a long time. Firstly, Gen-Z makes up the majority of TikTok users, and Lieberman, Vice President of Digital Marketing and Off-Premise at Chipotle says that they “prioritize Gen-Z as our target audience because we know they dictate social trends and have rising purchasing power.”

Unlike YouTube, TikTok and reels are filmed in a vertical format, the usual way people hold their phones. This makes the platform slightly more accessible. Sound and the accessibility of popular and copyrighted music is the biggest upside on TikTok, and has already helped many songs top charts all over the world.

Watch time is also something that makes the platform differ from YouTube . TikTok has a 15 or 60-second limit which can be a struggle when it comes to telling your brands story in that short amount of time. At the same time, our watch-spans have drastically changed and short, simple and easy to watch content is sometimes preferred. Brands and influencers need to make sure that their content has a key message, a story, authenticity and a call to action. At the same time, their content needs to be short and engaging. Thanks to TikTok though, our watch-spans have drastically changed and short, simple and easy to watch content is sometimes preferred

The algorithm:

Initial engagement is incredibly important, but isn’t the be all and end all when it comes to ‘going viral’. The algorithm measures Initial engagement and if requirements are met (minimum one like per every ten views), the content will be shown to additional users on the well-known ‘for you’- page (The Drum, 2020). If your content is engaging, fun and addresses something that viewers will be interested in, your content can receive millions of views over night!  

Tiktok trends, also known as challenges, are a vital part of the platform and usually involve a popular song, routine, or hashtag that other users attempt to re-create. As a brand, tapping into these trends can be rather challenging as the speed of these trends are very unpredictable and new trends emerge every day. 

Stay tuned to find our the tips and tricks for utilising TikTok for your business. I will also be implementing these tips and tricks for my own brand are share my results in the next blog post. See you then!

References:

The Drum. 2020. TikTok: how to get the best out of it. Available at: https://www.thedrum.com/opinion/2020/03/03/tiktok-how-get-the-best-out-it. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Forbes. 2020. Using TikTok To Build Your Business. Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/marciaturner/2020/03/31/using-tiktok-to-build-your-business/?sh=25dc03358462. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Influencer Marketing Hub. 2021. What is TikTok? – The Fastest Growing Social Media App Uncovered. Available at: https://influencermarketinghub.com/what-is-tiktok/. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Inside Hook. 2021. Is TikTok the Future of Digital Marketing?. Available at: https://www.insidehook.com/article/internet/tiktok-future-digital-marketing. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Linkedin. 2020. YouTube VS TikTok: Which Is Better For Your Influencer Marketing Initiatives?. Available at: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/youtube-vs-tiktok-which-better-your-influencer-tilda-linderholm?articleId=6678600192880705536. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Wyzowl. 2020. State of Video Marketing Survey 2020: The Results Are In!. Available at: https://www.wyzowl.com/video-marketing-survey-2020/. [Accessed 1 May 2021].

Can Social Media be a safe space?

BCM312

Understanding the pros and cons of engaging in social media in relation to mental health

In our first tutorial for our class Emerging Issues in Media and Communication we discussed media refusal and the reason why individuals feel the need to quit social media entirely. I found this incredibly interesting as a person who regularly uses social media. Social media platforms are no longer just a space to share your life. It can also be used to find communities across the globe that you relate with in order to feel a sense of connection and the feeling that you are not alone. I couldn’t help but wonder, what would my life look like if social media did not play a major role in it? If social media disappeared tomorrow, would I be better off?

Social media has had an undeniable influence in myself as an individual. A lot of my inspiration for the way I look, dress and convey myself comes from platforms such as Instagram, TikTok and Pinterest. On these platforms you see individuals living their lives to the fullest and we don’t know if it is real or fake. This can make it a toxic environment that could potentially make you feel bad about yourself and the life that you live. On a more positive note, I also gather a lot of information from social media from individuals and groups who are speaking out on topics such as mental health and wellbeing which I would not see if I wasn’t an active participant on these platforms. So are the benefits of social media outweighing the cost of it? I have been told that social media is toxic but how toxic can it be?

TikTok, a popular social media video-based platform.

Stemming from addiction to social media, my research will focus on relying on social media for information as an emerging issue in today’s modern technological world. To explore this further I want to look at the positive and negative side to using social media within the topic of mental health. We can often use social media for a sense of validation. Modern marketing is definitely known for exploiting our insecurities for profit. We are constantly being shown content that is capitalising off our insecurities. However, we also see content that is helpful and inspiring and brings together a group of people over issues that they are interested in or relate to.

When compiling my research for this project I expected to find numerous articles exclaiming that social media had a negative affect on our mental health. However, this was not really the case. In fact, I struggled to find a legitimate study that would confirm this. An eight year longitudinal study on Computers and Human Behaviour conducted research on time spent using social media in relation their depressive symptoms across ages 13-20. They found that across the eight year study, there was nothing to suggest that spending time on social media affected mental health. They found that their depression or anxiety did not increase when the adolescent used social media more, nor did it decrease when using social media less. This study also solidified the clinical standpoint of depression as a multi-process condition with multiple factors that come into play (Coyne, S. et al. 2020). Upon reflection after reading this study, I found myself thinking about how social media has affected my own mental health. I do catch myself needing a break from time to time as reading negative comments against other people does take a toll. I agree with the study that social media is not the sole purpose for mental health issues, but it is a big factor when it comes to what we think of ourselves in comparison to what we see online.  

We also need to consider that even if there is a significant impact on mental health due to social media usage, there has been a huge reach of individuals coming together to talk about their issues in a open and public platform such as TikTok. There are positive and negative factors with this. In journal by Cambridge University called Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences, results of a conceptual model found that “People with serious mental illness report benefits from interacting with peers online from greater social connectedness, feelings of group belonging and by sharing personal stories and strategies for coping with day-to-day challenges of living with a mental illness” (Naslund, J. et al. 2016). The paper also stated that individuals through social media had the opportunity to access communities that supported their wellbeing by providing information, support and to promote treatment while also reaching a wider demographic. The negative impact of this might result in finding misleading information or being exposed to harmful comments leading to more feelings of uncertainty surrounding their health conditions.

Another study of the uses, benefits and limitations of social media for health communication found that there were six benefits for using social media:

(1) increased interactions with others,

(2) more available, shared, and tailored information,

(3) increased accessibility and widening access to health information,

(4) peer/social/emotional support,

(5) public health surveillance, and

(6) potential to influence health policy. (Moorhead, SA. et al. 2013).

They also recognised 12 limitations to using social media for wellness which included fears of confidentiality and privacy and risk of sharing unreliable and misleading information to its audience.

This project will be an interesting tool in understanding the pros and cons of using social media for resources regarding mental health. I want to understand why researches are now looking at social media as something that benefits us and what are the possible risks behind it. Because social media is such an addicting platform, how much can rely on the information that is being presented to us?

References:

Coyne, S., Rogers, A., Zurcher, J. and Stockdale, L. (2020). Does time spent using social media impact mental health?: An eight year longitudinal study. Computers in Human Behavior, [Online]. 104, 106160. Available at: https://www-sciencedirect-com.ezproxy.uow.edu.au/science/article/pii/S0747563219303723 [Accessed 25 March 2021].

Moorhead, SA. Hazlett, DE. Harrison, L. Carroll, JK. Irwin A, Hoving C. (2013).
A New Dimension of Health Care: Systematic Review of the Uses, Benefits, and Limitations of Social Media for Health Communication
J Med Internet Res 2013;15(4):e85. Available at: https://www.jmir.org/2013/4/e85 [Accessed 25 March 2021].


Naslund, J. Aschbrenner, K. Marsch, L. Bartels, S. (2016). The future of mental health care: Peer-to-peer support and social media. Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences, 25(2), 113-122. Available at: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/epidemiology-and-psychiatric-sciences/article/future-of-mental-health-care-peertopeer-support-and-social-media/DC0FB362B67DF2A48D42D487ED07C783 [Accessed 25 March 2021].

The Future of Social Media Marketing: The Pitch

BCM325

Summary:

My digital artefact going to be a essay/article on the future of social media marketing. I want to understand the importance of social media marketing and how it is redefining the whole shopping experience for consumers.

I am hoping to educate myself and other business owners who want to maintain their brands in the future of social media.

Social Media managing includes a lot of planning which can contribute to the way we think about and organise for the future. I like to utilise articles online about understanding engagement and to search for keywords for social media. This is why I chose the format of a contextual essay as I think a written format would suit me and my audience better and almost be used as a guide.

I intend on using Instagram, Tiktok and Reddit as the platforms that I will be posting content towards. I chose these three as each one differs in the kind of content they allow (video, photo, written format). Every 2 weeks I intend on putting my focus onto one of these platforms by posting content, engaging with my audience and finding the relevant and niche tags necessary. I will collect my data at the end of the two weeks to see how my audience responds on each platform.

I will collect secondary research by scholars and journalists who study social media trends to understand how consumers respond to certain content and what their predictions are for the future.

Putting all my data into one article (I called it a contextual essay in my pitch) will make the project fast, simple, tiny and inexpensive. From there I believe I will be able to understand what the future is in social media marketing and why it is so crucial to maintain.

Here is a visual plan of my production timeline:

Week 3Pitch Due
Week 4Set Up social media platforms (Instagram and TikTok done.)
Organise content to be posted
Create a content schedule
Week 5This week’s focus – Instagram
Week 6This week’s focus – Instagram
Collect the data that you have found for a progress report
Week 7Gather Feedback/Iterate
This week’s focus – TikTok
Week 8This week’s focus – TikTok
Collect the data that you have found for a progress report
Beta Due
Week 9Gather Feedback/Iterate
This week’s focus – Reddit
Week 10This week’s focus – Reddit
Collect the data that you have found for a progress report
Week 11Gather Feedback/Iterate
Secondary Research – analyse what other brands have been doing
Week 12Edit and revise
Week 13DA Due

References:

Meeker, M., 2018. INTERNET TRENDS 2018. Kleiner Perkins, [Online]. 3-8. Available at: https://www.kleinerperkins.com/perspectives/internet-trends-report-2018/ [Accessed 18 March 2021].

Shane Barker. 2020. The Future of Social Media Marketing – 11 Trends That Will Impact Your Business (Updated January 2021). [Online] Available at: https://shanebarker.com/blog/future-of-social-media-marketing/. [Accessed 18 March 2021].