With over 50 billion views combined across hundreds of thousands of videos, #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt is the latest trend in social commerce and something every marketer should be aware of. In brief, under the hashtag, you can find almost infinite videos showcasing some of the purchases the users made because they saw them on TikTok. That is great social proof for your product, but it is also a fantastic opportunity to organically, or maybe not, reach a wider audience.
Hashtags like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt show how social media and retail platforms are blurring one another. This is happening fast. Just think about how Instagram now offers the option for shops to list their products and will show the prompt “shop now” under sponsored posts providing users the chance to access the offer without leaving the platform.
1. What is social commerce?
Social commerce is a form of e-commerce that uses social media platforms or social networking sites to facilitate online transactions. It uses social networks to create, share, and promote products and services, enabling direct transactions between buyers and sellers.
Social commerce leverages the power of social media to drive sales, increase brand awareness, and improve customer engagement. It includes various activities, such as social media advertising, influencer marketing, customer reviews, and social shopping.
Social commerce seeks to create a seamless buying experience by combining social media with traditional e-commerce.
Social commerce is growing in two main directions: from social media and e-commerce sites.
While platforms like Instagram are implementing ways to incorporate shopping into their platform and give the user an attrition-free experience from the moment, they discover the product on an influencer post to the moment they buy from the seller’s page. Shopping platforms are doing the opposite: adding social features, like photos and live streams, and allowing users to share their opinion about their purchases. Amazon is leading the charge with its Inspire app.
2. How TikTok is driving social commerce
The success of #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt is primarily due to how the TikTok algorithm works and how powerful and precise it can be in targeting a specific audience.
Videos using the hashtag often play to the platform’s strengths: being user-generated or similar to user-generated content featuring exciting products and catchy tunes to garner attention and attract views.
TikTok has in 2022 have worked hard to position itself in a better position in social shopping: rolling out the Shop feature in the US and a partnership with TalkShopLive to include live-stream commerce were two essential steps to make the platform ready to cash on the#TikTokMadeMeBuyIt phenomenon.
And the trend keeps going in 2023 with the testing of in-app checkout to prepare the platform for an end-to-end shopping experience. Thanks to these improvements, the number of buyers on TikTok in the US alone grew by 72.3% in 2022, bringing the total to 23.7 million.
Even if TikTok is expected to have fewer social buyers for the next couple of years than Facebook or Instagram, the steps taken make it evident that the platform is pushing to become the dominant player in the field.
3. Understanding the #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt phenomenon
With #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt, we can see how the platform can blend organic content and ads almost seamlessly: marketers and advertisers can generate creatives that are simil-User generated content and leverage the robust TikTok algorithm to target users that are most likely to decide on a purchase while browsing content. Concurrently non sponsored users would also generate organic content about the product and use the hashtag just because of personal choice, and because is a trend. This double approach shows that this is not just a trend pushed by marketing spend but is a type of content users enjoy and look for organically.
The #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt trend leverages social influence by combining paid promoters and organic fans to present and explain how a product has been a great addition to their life and, indirectly, invite the user to make the same purchase.
TikTok users are interested in genuine content and ways to express themselves or see other people express themselves, which should be kept in mind if wanting to leverage the #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt trend effectively.
Interested in e-commerce and want to be on top of the cycle? Check out our 2023 Retail/E-commerce Industry Report
4. How to craft a successful #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt campaign
To successfully run a #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt campaign you will have to use the TikTok native format, be entertaining, encourage users to post their content, include strong CTAs, interact with the engaged users, and repurpose the content your userbase creates.
Use the native TikTok format
Vertical orientation, with dimensions of 1080×1920 with a ratio of 9:16. This way, your content will have the best quality and occupy the full screen for the viewer. It has also been shown that users will engage 30% more with TikTok native formats.
Include a strong call to action
Strong calls to action should be a part of your strategy and will translate into a solid conversion of those users that came to TikTok for entertainment and will get inspired to purchase.
Keep it entertaining
TikTok users are on the platform to express themselves and be entertained. Therefore you should keep it in mind when planning your creatives, and if you want to bring it to the next level,
Encourage user content
Consider introducing an aspect of challenge. Something users could latch on to create organic content.
Interact with the audience
Not only do your creatives need to be in line with TikTok etiquettes, but your way of interacting with users on the platform needs to be up to par. Be ready to like and comment on the replies and videos of the user that engage and create content around your product. Show the fun side of your company.
Repurpose the content
Use user-generated content you earned from the campaign as social proof, repurposing it for other social media or your website.
5. The future of social commerce and TikTok
Social commerce is projected to break over 1 Trillion dollars in revenue worldwide by 2024 and, by 2030, be over 6 Trillion. While countries like the US are lagging a bit behind in this trend China and other Asian countries, lead the charge.
From these countries, we can see how social commerce can achieve a conversion rate of almost 30% or ten times higher than other forms of e-commerce, presenting a great opportunity for brands and companies ready to delve into it.
Influencers and KOLs will play a central role in the success of many brands’ social commerce strategies. With the audience and credibility they built around their persona, they will become a fundamental part of the consumer journey for social media users.
One of the main avenues by which users will discover and build trust towards brands and a further incentive to purchase the products since is going to help the creator.
Due to this ongoing shift toward social commerce, developing a comprehensive influencer marketing strategy will become of central importance for any brand that is seriously interested in going down this path.
Users are shifting from discovering products and brands from owned channels to influencers’ suggestions and recommendations. To keep on top of that is necessary to identify and nurture relationships with influencers who are active in your market niche and have access to audiences you want to tap into.
To effectively identify relevant KOLs and keep track of them, you can rely on services like CreatorDB. With our large influencer database, advanced search tools, and niche identification technology, you can pinpoint all the influencers adjacent to your product and start contacting them immediately. CreatorDB is available as an online SaaS for ease of use and immediate results and as an API service to be integrated with your existing workflow and provide you with all the data you need to make the right decisions regarding influencer marketing.
Social media and e-commerce platforms are racing to create a hybrid where users can access entertainment and purchase simultaneously. This formula has already been shown to bring higher than average conversion rates in the Asian markets where it first gained popularity. While Facebook and Instagram are leaders in social commerce in the Western world, TikTok is positioning its structure to overtake them soon.
Social media campaigns like #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt can blend advertisement and organic content to drive user engagement and amplify the potential virality of a paid campaign.
With the rise of social commerce, influencer marketing will become essential for any business that wants to take this opportunity seriously.