4 Tips For DTC Brands To Effectively Test TikTok Ads

We constantly speak with advertisers who tested TikTok ads but got discouraged by the traffic quality. When you run TikTok ads with a brand new pixel that has zero attributed events to learn from, it's almost impossible not to see low-quality traffic when first testing the channel. Most advertisers see the 95% bounce rate and 0:01 average session duration metrics and get discouraged. Here are some tricks to walk your way down the funnel when starting out on TikTok to ensure you reach a high quality audience ASAP:

1. Audience Targeting

Unlike Facebook, TikTok needs an extra nudge in the right direction to get your ads in front of users who are actually engaged and likely to purchase your product. Here is where some old-fashioned manual audience exclusions come in handy. We recommend restricting your device targeting to iOS only (which directly translated to a more affluent audience), only targeting your highest converting age brackets (you can use your Google Analytics data to find this), and targeting your highest indexing interest audiences from GA or a third-party data source like the Quantcast Measure pixel.

2. Day-Parting when your ads serve

Again, we're taking a page out the old media buying playbook here. Restricting your ads from serving outside of your most efficient times of the day is an old-school hack that actually works when initially testing TikTok. We typically either exclude the least-efficient times of day from your Google Analytics data, or only target 7am-12am each day. Both often lead to clear improvements in CVR.

An example of what day-parting might look like in the TikTok ads UI

3. Creative

Creative messaging is a huge lever to improve conversion rate. Most advertisers are aware of the importance of the initial "hook" when making ads for paid social. However, where many fall short is the content following their initial hook. Your creative does the targeting, and the more context you provide after that hook on your product, the better-informed your site visitors who click-through will be. We make our TikTok ads much longer than the recommended 5-16 seconds, and we pack them with value props beyond the initial "hook" to reach the long-tail of users who watch beyond 3 seconds.

4. Landing Page Experience

You typically can't expect to just drive to a product detail page and see your TikTok traffic convert. A custom, more native-feeling landing page like a listicle or quiz experience will often outperform a traditional landing page. TikTok audiences respond to landing pages that feel more narrative/organic in nature.

Have you struggled testing or scaling your TikTok ads? Feel free to drop us a line and we'll get in touch to schedule a free strategy call!

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