This article was originally written for Inside Magazine and was featured as part of our monthly column entitled The Inside On Social Media.
When it comes to social media these days I often hear the same question; I want to promote my business and grow my following, but I don’t have the budget to spend on adverts, can it still be done?
The short answer is yes but only if you have a lot of time to dedicate to it. The hard truth is that unless you have a large following already, whose interaction you can rely on to promote your brand for you, it is unlikely that you will be able to substantially grow your following without paid adverts. Or at least that is true for many of the big social media platforms - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. But there is one platform where that isn’t the case, namely TikTok.
TikTok still gives its users the amazing ability to reach thousands of people organically. But this won’t last forever. The reason the other social media giants have lent into the pay-to-play model is quite simply because they needed to generate the money. They don’t make any money from users amassing huge followings without ads, but when people & businesses pretty much have to spend on ads to reach people outside their circle then they can generate billions! TikTok on the other hand, despite being a powerhouse of influence in music, entertainment and celebrity, can still provides its users with a very nice chunk of organic reach.
My personal prediction is that this will not last forever. Just like Facebook had too, TikTok will also eventually need to restrict the organic reach of users in order to generate income from ads. I’ve no idea when this could happen - it could be in the next 6 months, it could be in the next few years - but either way my advice to you is simple (and believe me my clients are sick of hearing it!) get on TikTok ASAP, start talking about what you’re passionate about or sharing videos about your business, aim to post at least once per day for the next 30 days, and see what can be achieved in a relatively short time frame!
And if you want further proof of how crazy things can become for a business that does this right, just look at the now legendary Binley Mega Chippy in Coventry whose TikTok
video went so viral that people have travelled from all the world (yes, the world!) to sample their delights and the video has left many of us still humming the jingle! If you’ve no idea what I’m talking about then a Google search of their name will help you, but be forewarned the song is annoyingly catchy!
If you do decide to add TikTok to your social media roster then good luck, have fun, and don’t forget you can email me via Inside Magazine with any questions you may have for me to answer in future columns.
Jordan J. Whittingham
The Inside on Social Media