This week covers TikTok’s first iteration of SMB Beauty & Care Week, which brought together four small- to medium-sized brands to access large-scale advertising. Scroll down to use Glossy+ Comments, allowing the Glossy+ community to join discussions around industry topics.
TikTok just completed its first-ever Small-Medium-Business Beauty and Care Week, with four beauty brands, in a bid to drive SMB advertising on the social media platform.
Beginning on July 31, Beauty and Care Week brought together Patrick Ta Beauty, Grande Cosmetics, the B.Tan tanning brand and Kinfield skin care to access an ad product called Reach & Frequency. It also facilitated a partnership between the brands and content creator Christine Abraham (@ChristineAbrahamm; 955,000 followers). TikTok’s website highlights stats stating that 52% of TikTok users that have come across SMB content have gone on to make a purchase, and 82% of TikTok users say they have discovered an SMB on TikTok before seeing it elsewhere.
“It’s almost like you’re coupling the power of intimate word of mouth, but at the pace of culture and communication,” said Rhea Michel, team lead of marketing for North American SMBs at TikTok.
Michel said success on TikTok through unpaid and paid channels was the primary metric used to select the participating brands, but she did not elaborate further. The Reach & Frequency ad product allows advertisers to prioritize either their overall number of impressions or the frequency at which the same users see their ad. TikTok then optimizes the campaign to hit an advertiser’s chosen KPI. Michel said Reach & Frequency is currently only available to qualified customers, which tend to be large companies. The pricing of Reach & Frequency depends on the parameters a brand sets but is typically expensive. The participating brands did not have to invest more than they currently do for TikTok advertising to use Reach & Frequency. Additionally, these brands will also have access to Reach & Frequency moving forward.
“[Beauty and Care Week] allowed us to work even closer with TikTok, and as a social-first brand, TikTok is our priority platform,” said Kayla Casillas, director of marketing at Patrick Ta Beauty. Casillas declined to share the audiences Patrick Ta Beauty selected to reach or how many times it opted to expose audiences to the ad messaging.
For Abraham’s part, she made a TikTok featuring all Beauty and Care Week brands together in a get-ready-with-me-style video before a date. Abraham started with B.Tan’s self-tan gel, then added Kinfield’s sunscreen, before applying Grande Cosmetics’ mascara and Patrick Ta Beauty’s lip gloss. The idea of the video was to feature “summer essential” items. On Abraham’s channel, the video earned over 129,000 views and 4,000 likes. At the time of this reporting, Beauty and Care Week had not concluded, and the final results and impact for brands were undetermined. Alicia Grande, founder of Grande Cosmetics, said she was hopeful to see an increase in Grande Cosmetics profile views and visitors to the brand’s newly launched TikTok Shop. Grande Cosmetics has 61,500 TikTok followers.
“We are hoping to gauge the difference between working with creators via TikTok versus working with influencers in-house, and the difference in content performance,” said Grande. “We are also hoping to further engage with our TikTok audience and tap into those who may not yet be familiar with Grande Cosmetics.”
Grande declined to share the audiences her brand selected to reach or how many times it opted to expose audiences to the ad messaging. In addition to the video with Abraham, the brands were featured in a TikTok blog post on the company’s social media channels and a TikTok for Business marketing email.
“As a smaller company, [using TikTok] is one of the ways that you continue to grow; you test and learn with all of the new opportunities that come your way,” said Casillas. “We [want to] work with creators who are a little bit outside of the box or bring a different, cool or refreshed perspective, to gain insight into how their audience will react to the brand.”
The benefit for TikTok is that assisting small and medium businesses in understanding how the social platform can help their businesses creates a virtuous cycle of more ad spend as the businesses grow. TikTok launched a Small Business Resource Center in Dec. 2020, just ahead of the global shutdown that ultimately helped boost the user base and advertisers of TikTok. TikTok became a legitimate competitor in the ad space at this time and has since set its sights on small business ad growth. TikTok recently hosted an all-day, bi-coastal “TikTok High” event in L.A. and NYC for invited brands, including Grande Cosmetics. The event included a keynote and immersive workshop that taught brands to build media plans based on their fourth-quarter objectives.
Other platforms have responded in kind. In Aug. 2022, Meta expanded the flexibility of its Advantage+ ad tools to individual buys rather than entire campaigns. That has allowed SMBs to experiment with ads on a lower budget and is likely a reaction to Facebook reporting its first-ever fall in ad revenue in the U.S. In 2021, Snapchat created a six-month funding program for small, minority-owned businesses, offering them $10,000 per month to create content for Snapchat Discover, as well as one-on-one mentorship from Snap’s content and media partnerships team. That year also saw a plethora of grants and mentorship programs from corporate America, in response to DE&I calls in the wake of the killing of George Floyd.
“Outside of highlighting and amplifying [SMB] brands, we also want to make sure that we educate. It’s like the adage of, ‘If you teach a person to fish, they eat for life,’” said Michel.
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