By Sofia Serrano and Austyn Allison
The video-sharing platform TikTok recently launched its corporate arm, TikTok for Business. TikTok for Business is the platform’s offering for brands to develop their image and unleash their creativity, to raise their voice and find the right audience among a young and engaged TikTok community.
Following the trend of virtual events during the pandemic, TikTok for Business gathered an online community for an Open Day at the TikTok Hive – a virtual conference centre. When guests logged in, an enthusiastic man in a unicorn onesie welcomed them to the platform before leading them to an interactive Reception, the “homepage for the day”. In the Reception – a virtual hall adorned with cushions, virtual personas and TikTok videos – visitors had access to different spaces including the Auditorium, the Directory Hall, the Exhibition Hall, the Lounge and the Resource Centre. They could also download a virtual goody bag of wallpapers, PDF brochures, graphics and other conference-style freebies.
The event started in the Hive’s Auditorium with introductions and the keynote speech by Shant Oknayan, the head of global business solutions for MENA and Turkey. Oknayan explained how TikTok’s full-screen, sound-on format encourages high engagement, and emphasised that “engagement then drives strong business results”. He demonstrated TikTok’s engagement rates through multiple examples of third-party data. Oknayan shared metrics and consumer behaviour trends on TikTok and its value as a platform for brands to expand their identities among a community of fully engaged creators.
The conference, which had more than 1,300 attendees, continued with breakout sessions accessed through the Directory Hall.
TikTok for Business team members discussed topics including an Arabic introduction to the platform’s new services and topics such as “The Power of Creation”, “Building Great Partnerships”, “Get your SME started on TikTok”, “Branding Solutions Crash Course”, and “The Evolution of Consumers”.
In “Brand Building through Authentic Content”, Jovana Jovanovich, creative agency partner at TikTok, presented insights about how TikTok thrives on the “three Cs” of content, community and consumers. To that list brands can add a fourth C – commerce – if they learn to “make TikToks not ads”. The talks emphasised the commerce aspect of TikTok and the opportunity it presents for brands.
The attendees Campaign chatted with in the Lounge (as TikTok’s head of video and creative Rami Zeidan played a DJ set of old-school hip-hop) were enjoying this unusual event. Beverney Shane from AKQA said: “The event was refreshingly different compared to other online events, and a nice break from the usual Zoom and BlueJeans conference calls. Super sick to see a more positive and entertaining push on the direction of content that agencies should aspire to create. What I’ve learned is that people need to find their voice and be creative with it. One needs to go beyond getting thumbs-up-oriented engagement.”
Business growth specialist Ayman Itani said: “As an active member on TikTok, I felt that the #TikTokHive event format was structured in a way where it covers the different needs of the attendees: statistics, downloadable files, knowing who the TikTok team is, where to get started, and entertainment.”
The event’s resources will continue to be up for another week, so don’t miss your chance to dig into the insightful material and watch any videos you might have missed on the day.