What are TikTok Ads, and How Can They Help Your Video Game?

by Game Marketing Genie, on 03-Mar-2020 15:02:46

From social media's inception in the late 1990s to its popularity today, gamers have been sharing opinions and searching for news. For instance, around 2.98 billion people use Facebook monthly (source: Statista). And a fair few of these people are gamers. Social media is one of your most significant assets; you should use it to its fullest potential.

But it's not enough to post content to every platform; you also need to know who exists there. Different demographics use different platforms, and you won't reach your perfect player set if you don't understand where they are. Are you trying to target a primarily female audience? A specific country? Younger players? If the latter is true, TikTok Ads might work for you.

What is TikTok?

TikTok is a video-sharing social networking platform that was launched in 2017. It's a fusion of parent company ByteDance's app Douyin and their acquisition of the popular music video-sharing platform Musical.ly.

It allows users to create short, catchy videos central to the user experience that can be edited, reacted to, and monetized. Creators can make anything from challenges to collaborative videos with other users worldwide.

TikTok has become one of the most popular social media apps. The app was ByteDance's chance to expand outside of China, and their merger of Musical.ly with the already existing TikTok allowed them to blend their audiences. However, it still exists as Douyin in China, with country-specific regulations.

Since TikTok was launched into the world, it has seen incredibly rapid growth, unlike other social media platforms. It is expected to reach 955 million users by 2025 (source: Statista).

57% of TikTok users are female (source: Exploding Topics), and most users are below 24. If you're interested in reaching an audience similar to this, it's clear that TikTok is a platform worth investing in. 

Companies previously had the chance to advertise on TikTok through endorsements by popular creator profiles. However, in late 2019, the platform developed its own ad service in the form of TikTok Ads.

Advertisements on buildings

What are TikTok Ads?

TikTok Ads allows advertisers to define their audiences, create their own content, and choose when and where they want their ads to appear.

Businesses can create many different types of ads, including images and videos of various sizes and formats. The service includes a “Video Creation Kit,” which provides users with a range of templates for easy video creation and allows the compilation of existing images to create videos.

It also features an automatic ad delivery tool called “Automated Creative Optimization.” The tool automatically makes, distributes, and optimizes your ads for you. This helps extend your ads’ lifetime value and ensures they remain relevant.

This service may sound incredible, but you'll need a decent budget before you begin. A TikTok Ad campaign will set you back a 500 USD minimum, with a price of $10 for every 1000 clicks. This price can be relatively high depending on the scale of your campaign, so be prepared to spend a little more. 

Don’t let this turn you away though. Your ads can be placed across any apps that are part of the ByteDance family, which spans multiple vertical markets (some of which may not be available in your country).

There are several locations your ads can appear within these apps. Where they appear depends on the ad formats you choose and the apps you want to feature on. Brand takeovers and effects, in-feed videos, hashtag challenges, post-video, and upon opening the app appearances, in the audience-tailored “For You” feed. These are just some of the areas your ads can appear.

After your ads are set up, you can use the TikTok Pixel to track any actions made resulting from your ad. This helps you measure your ad’s performance, automatically optimize, and determine the demographics more likely to take specific actions on your site. 

Get your in-house marketing dev to install it or set it up with Google Tag Manager. Do this before launching your TikTok Ads campaign, and ensure you do because data is invaluable for optimizing your campaign.

Before we go any further, let's find out why TikTok Ads works.

Marketing strategy written on white paper

Why TikTok Ads work

While TikTok Ads may appear costly, it's still an opportunity that smaller businesses are failing to incentivize. Nothing is more convincing than a success story, so let’s look at one that significantly impacted marketing.


In May 2019, Chipotle partnered with TikTok to create a hashtag challenge. They launched this challenge as part of the free delivery deal during Cinco de Mayo and saw a spike in purchases following the campaign. This was before TikTok launched its Ads service, but it still shows the power of a paid collaboration and the hashtag ads feature that now exists on the platform.

The challenge used the hashtag "#ChipotleLidFlip" and encouraged users to try and flip the lid onto a Chipotle burrito bowl. paid The hashtag was featured on the app from May 5 to 10 and connected with audiences worldwide, from casual app users to YouTube personalities like David Dobrik.

Chief Marketing Officer of Chipotle, Chris Brandt, said that the company wanted to connect with people through food, culturally relevant experiences, and social media platforms.

People sitting at restaurant

So, why did this campaign work, and how could something similar work for you?

The user-generated and trend-driven nature of the TikTok platform allowed this to happen as the interactivity of the campaign encouraged people to jump in and spread awareness. And this is where you could succeed with TikTok Ads.

Paid advertising for game devs

Organic marketing is great, but it won’t take you all the way to game marketing success! Don’t be afraid to invest in paid advertising, as it can help you generate the reach and engagement you need. Still not convinced? Check out The Complete Paid Marketing Guide for Video Games!

Want to dominate gamer social media? TikTok is one of the best places to start. While big brands have already used the app successfully, video game marketing brands still haven't made the most of it. Game devs should start considering TikTok game marketing to get the word out engagingly.

Use the TikTok Ad service to connect with your target audience, boost reach and awareness, and become a player in this area. At Game Marketing Genie, we understand your challenges. Let us remove your Tiktok Ads uncertainties and create a fantastic gaming social media marketing strategy for you. This gives you the time to grow as a business and as an early investor on the platform.

Want to know more? Check out our social media marketing strategy page to find out how we can help you!

Topics:Social Media MarketingDigital Marketing StrategySocial Media Marketing StrategyTikTok Marketing

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