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May 28, 2021 - By Barron Rosborough

How to Build an Effective TikTok Influencer Marketing Strategy

Trying to reach teenagers and young adults? The importance of TikTok can’t be overstated. TikTok should be an essential part of your marketing strategy for any brand targeting a younger demographic — and incorporating influencer marketing into your TikTok efforts will help your brand awareness spread even further

But like with any marketing tactic, there are plenty of nuances to consider when setting up TikTok influencer campaigns, such as ensuring the influencers you activate are aligned with your products, have engaged and responsive audiences, and are asking for fair compensation to promote your brand. 

Here’s what you need to know about how to find and work with influencers on TikTok.

How to Find TikTok Influencers

The first step to any successful influencer campaign is finding the right talent. With millions of users creating content for TikTok, finding the talent that aligns with your brand, messaging strategy and campaign goals can be a monumental task.   

One of the simplest ways to research TikTok influencers is by searching in the app itself. Open the Discover page and type a keyword relating to your business (like “fitness” or “beauty”) into the search bar. Then look through the top results to find influencers who might be a good fit for you. 

However, in addition to being time-consuming, this method of research only gives you a sliver of the data you need to make an informed decision on if a particular influencer will deliver the results you hope to achieve by engaging with them. This is due to the fact that as a casual user, you’ll only be able to roughly calculate the reach and engagement rates of an influencer’s content (by comparing the number of followers with the number of likes/comments on any particular post). While good to know, these two metrics alone won’t allow you to make a strategic decision on the potential value of engaging with a particular influencer.

Leverage an Influencer Search Engine

One way to make the search process more efficient is by using an influencer search engine. These tools are designed to help you identify and vet influencers at a glance, allowing you to select advanced filters to refine your search (such as audience size and demographics, engagement rates, and more) and narrow in on the best influencers for you. Platforms like Upfluence, Fanbytes, and Tokfluence are good places to start, though they can be significant investments for small businesses. 

Engage with an Influencer Marketing Agency

While leveraging a platform like those discussed above will certainly allow you to more efficiently compile a shortlist of influencers, you should expect to still spend a considerable amount of time conducting research and outreach before getting a campaign off the ground due to the factors we’ll discuss in more detail below. 

Working with an agency with deep influencer marketing experience like Hawke Media can significantly lessen the toll on your team’s bandwidth — and generate success with influencer marketing at scale. Not only do agencies like Hawke have access to best-in-class tools to search for influencers, they also partner with a wide range of influencer agencies to allow you to access celebrity and top-tier talent that you may not otherwise receive a response from. 

Working With TikTok Influencers

Once you’ve found the right influencers for your campaign, the real work can begin. Here is how TikTok influencer deals usually unfold. 

Interact With Their Content

Once you’ve identified influencers who might be a good fit for your brand, start interacting with their content. This will help them get familiar with your brand — and it will prove that you’re genuinely interested in what they’re doing. 

When you’re ready to reach out, send them an email or a direct message with your proposal (you can message them on Instagram if they don’t follow you on TikTok). Clearly explain what you’re offering and what benefits they’ll receive.

Discover more highly effective influencer outreach tactics here.

Negotiate a Deal

If an influencer shows interest in working together with you, it’s time to negotiate a deal. Be specific about what you expect them to deliver and what products or monetary compensation you’ll give them in return. Most likely, you’ll set basic parameters the first time you work with a certain influencer and then renegotiate the details of each subsequent campaign. 

Plan Content Together

Next comes the fun part: planning out the content your influencers are going to create. Jump on top of trending TikTok sounds, use features like Duets, research TikTok challenges — the possibilities are endless! 

One key thing to note when it comes to planning campaigns and content is to keep in mind that the TikToker you are partnering with knows their audience best, so trust their creative judgment. Working with an agency that is experienced in negotiating with influencers can help you ensure that your key messaging points and brand guidelines are upheld, but the most successful campaigns are ones in which the content feels genuine and authentic.

How Much Do TikTok Influencers Charge?

The cost of TikTok influencers will vary depending on your industry, the size of the influencer you’re working with, and other factors. Some companies pay $200 for a branded video on TikTok. Others pay $2,000! The exact price of a TikTok influencer marketing campaign will be different for each situation, though you can use this Estimated Total Earnings By Account tool to give you a very rough estimate. 

Many small businesses choose to work with micro-influencers instead of macro-influencers. While macro-influencers have anywhere from 100,000 to a few million followers, micro-influencers have a much smaller following, typically between 1,000 and 100,000 users — but often a more engaged one. They can be a good fit for niche small businesses. No matter the size of your budget, there’s an influencer out there for every brand. 

TikTok influencer marketing might feel intimidating, but in today’s marketplace, it’s a must. If you’re interested in learning more about how influencer marketing on TikTok can help your brand reach new audiences, reach out for a free consultation today!