A recent global research study conducted by Material, found that TikTok is becoming a key part in the consumers’ path to purchase, and how they are progressively discovering and buying new products. The results of the study highlighted the impact TikTok has and how it is expanding outside of the platform, into the real world.

Advertisements are becoming more and more prominent on the platform, as 44% of users mention that they discover new products through the ads shown in their feed. 37% of users mentioned that they immediately went to buy a product upon discovering it and 35% mentioned that they are more likely to purchase something that they have seen on the platform. 


The Slow Decline of Facebook 

Facebook’s announcement that the global number of daily active users declining for the first time in its history saw billions lost from the value of its parent company, Meta. Mark Zuckerberg partially blamed TikTok, mentioning that individuals today have many choices for how they want to spend their time, and that applications such as TikTok are growing at an unanticipated rate.

Simon Kemp, author of the Digital 2022 Australia report mentioned that the steep decline could have been attributed to Meta’s significant changes in the way it reports ad reach figures. He speculated that the changes in the data between the October 2021 and January 2022 reports represent an actual change in user activity.

Apple’s App Tracking Transparency privacy feature, which prevents platforms such as Facebook & Instagram from tracking people through iPhone identifiers has been a contributing factor and has had a major impact for Meta.


The Steady Rise of TikTok

Hootsuite and creative agency We Are Social released Australia specific statistics on the top performing social platforms and found that TikTik was becoming a household name. It was reported that the average time per month that users spent on Facebook (owned by Meta) decreased by 3% last year, Instagram (also owned by Meta) rose by 2% year-on-year and YouTube (owned by Google) increased by 5% respectively.

But TikTok was the leader, as they saw a 40% increase year-on-year.

(Source: ABC Science)

For TikTok, demographically, users are spread out between the ‘13-17’ age group and the ‘25-34’ age group in Australia. There are a few within the ‘35-44’ age group as well as the ‘45-54’ age group. This outlines that TikTok is beginning to become accustomed to all age groups and demographics.

(Source: Statista)


Successes of TikTok

TikTok’s influence over consumer purchase decisions has assisted their rapid increase in the past 2 years, as they have reshaped the traditional purchasing path for consumers and are driving sales at a scalable rate. 

The study conducted by Material outlined that consumer behaviour has evolved whilst on the platform, as 44% of users mentioned that they discovered products from videos posted by a brand and 38% interacted with the video posted while actively doing product research. The study further suggested that pre-purchase behaviour has been heavily influenced as much as post-purchase behaviour.  They highlighted that 1 out of  4 users posted and tagged a brand after purchasing a product, created a post showing off the product they bought and followed the brand post-purchase. 

Branding has become a major factor on TikTok and led to many success stories for businesses. TikTok offers many case studies on the successes of these businesses such as Social Dot. They are an Australian-owned small business that focuses on connecting users’ social sites with the goal of replacing business cards. Being fairly new to the market, Social Dot wanted to take advantage of the opportunities TikTok had to offer in order to create brand awareness with a broad demographic. Check out their case study here


Process of TikTok Advertising

The reality is that TikTok is ever-growing and has changed the way that consumers look at brands and purchase products. So it’s necessary for brands to keep up with the trend and be able to understand how it works. TikTok follows a simple four-step process to set up your ads management system. Using their TikTok Ads manager platform, brands can leverage four steps to connect with their audience. 

Step 1: Choosing your goal – This involves choosing whether your brand wants to target reach, traffic, conversions etc.

Step 2: Selecting your audience – Picking the right audience is vital for any targeting strategy and brands must ensure they know who their demographic is.

Step 3: Setting your budget – this is different for every brand and campaign as different campaigns require different strategies and budgets. 

Step 4: Designing your advertisement – This is the hardest part of the entire process as this is where the creativity has to flow and show. Many TikTok brands use Canva and various other creative tools when developing their content to assist in the creative process. 


Why do we care?

TikTok has taken the world by storm and in this digital age, businesses and brands have to keep up with the trending times. The way TikTok has influenced the consumer journey on top of consumer behaviour, highlights that it is a platform with a strong growth and one to engage with.  TikTok has made its presence known on our radar as well as many others, and with the ever-evolving consumer, it might be a platform where we all soon might be advertising through. 


Further Readings

TikTok Business

TikTok Success Stories

How to Use TikTok for Business – A Guide

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