The superstar social media platform TikTok has shocked marketing departments and content creators across the globe, thanks to the early release of their 2023 holiday marketing playbook.
And yes, we already know – it’s June! Why the rush to plan for the holidays in mid-summer? Well, according to the platform, the best time to start planning is now.
If you’re a small brand or a content creator with plans to leverage the holiday season this year to increase your income then you’re in the right place. In this article, we’re going to be taking a look at TikTok’s 2023 holiday marketing playbook, where the social media giant shares when to start planning, and best practices for campaign success.
Let’s take a look!
Who Published The Holiday Playbook?
The 2023 holiday marketing playbook was published by TikTok, a social media platform that uses short-form video content to engage users. Most of us, are already familiar with the platform and its features, but what some fail to realize is that the app has shown interesting metrics when it comes to product sales and brand awareness.
Some small businesses have already placed TikTok as a priority in their marketing strategy, with a keen interest to take advantage of the platform’s virality and reach to attract new customers, specifically younger generations. The same can be said for influencers.
In fact, according to TikTok, 1 in 2 app users rely on the platform as a fun way to discover products and holiday-themed content. At the same time, users are 1.4% more likely to purchase a product they’ve seen on the platform – making it an important addition to content creators and small brands’ holiday marketing campaigns.
The 2023 holiday marketing playbook by TikTok is a 13-page report that includes a wide range of data and best practices that creators and brands can implement to maximize product discovery and purchasing decisions.
The app also included some of the main hashtags to use during holiday campaigns, as well as key trends that can be leveraged for further reach.
TikTok also shared some points on how to maximize campaign potential, with a step-by-step guide on some of the basics. Tips included early planning and smart campaign feature tips.
The platform went on to showcase its different in-app advertising options, with a breakdown of the key differences.
TikTok also shared an overview of holiday calendars and what the key dates are for campaigns.
Using TikTok for holiday campaigns can offer huge results, especially if done right. According to the platform, 39% of users stated that they have discovered a brand or product through TikTok, 47% say that they find gift inspiration on the platform, and a crazy 77% of users stated that they’ve purchased a product after seeing it on TikTok – which makes sense considering the popular hashtag #tiktokmademebuyit.
The metrics get even better! TikTok for businesses reported that 84% of users are planning on shopping online this holiday season, with 2 out 3 users stating that they are budgeting an average of 200$ for gifts which is a 9% increase when compared to last year’s average holiday spend.
Here are some key points from the report:
- Shopify Integration
Thanks to the new partnership between TikTok and Shopify you can easily integrate your product catalog so that consumers can shop directly from within the app.
The integration allows brands and content creators with Shopify stores and Business accounts on TikTok to add a shopping button to their profile, where you can sync your entire product catalog to the application.
This integration is only available within the U.S. and U.K., although according to TikTok it will be made available in Canada soon.
The platform is hoping to attract new users with this popular integration – everything from small businesses to content creators with their own product lines or brands – with the sole goal of attracting new audiences.
- Holiday-Themed Hashtags
Unless you’ve been living under a social media rock you probably already understand the importance of hashtags, and how these handy keywords can increase engagement and brand awareness.
The same rules apply to TikTok! Some of the popular hashtags the platform mentioned in their report were: #itsblackfriday, #gift, #blackfriday, #unboxing, #christmas, #holidayhacks, #christmasshopping, #holidayseason, #happyholidays, and #christmasgift.
Another great way to enhance reach is to create your own unique holiday-themed hashtag and use it throughout the entirety of your campaign.
- Early Planning
The main point mentioned in TikTok’s holiday playbook is planning. Plan early!
According to the app, planning content early can help with overall campaign success. This is primarily due to the fact that unforeseen circumstances can occur mid-campaign, and if you’ve already planned ahead you’ll have less on your plate which will allow you to troubleshoot issues with ease.
Not only that but planning ahead also gives you room for creative freedom later down the line. For instance, no one can predict the exact trends that will be taking place on the app six months from now, but if you’ve got your entire campaign ready to go, you have free time to have some fun and hop on some viral trends during the holidays as well, thus increasing your reach.
According to TikTok For Business, these are the campaign planning dates you should follow to stay ahead:
For all festivities and holidays during the fall season:
Creative brainstorming, strategy, content creation, and media planning: October 15th to November 4th.
Uploading, scheduling, and activating all holiday campaigns: November 4th till November 11th.
For all festivities and holidays during the winter season:
Creative brainstorming, strategy, content creation, and media planning: November 20th to December 10th.
Uploading, scheduling, and activating all holiday campaigns: December 11th till December 17th.
For New Year’s campaigns:
Creative brainstorming, strategy, content creation, and media planning: November 26th to December 16th.
Uploading, scheduling, and activating all holiday campaigns: December 23rd.
Currently, there’s no arguing that TikTok is one of the most influential platforms, especially for younger generations such as Gen Z, therefore it makes sense to integrate a social strategy for the app when it comes to your holiday campaign planning this year.
What Does This Mean for Influencers And Content Creators?
The TikTok holiday playbook is primarily aimed at brands and businesses, but the information shared is still applicable to content creators and influencers wanting to better understand how to leverage the app to their benefit this season.
In the next section, we’ve outlined some of the key takeaways from the report that are useful for content creators. Let’s take a look.
Use the app’s native language instead of trying to break the mold
The type of content that works best on TikTok is authentic, raw, and real. In fact, TikTok and Instagram Reels couldn’t be further away from each other if they tried. Reels call for highly curated and staged content, whereas TikTok short-form videos that go viral are normally spontaneous and random.
The best way to get an idea of what’s working is to scour the app for inspiration, you’ll soon notice trends and similarities between the content that’s trending. Take notes, and replicate the format within your niche, adding a personal flair and your own style to make the content unique.
Some key points to consider are that most trending videos aren’t highly edited, and use audios that are trending.
Grab the user’s attention and then add value
Each short-form video you upload on the platform acts as a funnel. The goal should always be to grab the user’s attention and then add value – only after added value will a user take action.
You can use TikTok content to direct new audiences to your other social profiles, your website, affiliate products, and even your own brand.
For instance, if you’re a creator within the food niche you could upload a recipe tutorial for holiday desserts and then direct the user to your paid recipe book.
Have fun with editing and audio
TikTok offers a lot of editing features within the app, as well as audio that you can use to create unique content.
You can explore different types of filters or editing settings that other viral videos are having success with, at the same time as trying new things that might not seem as popular at first.
Using trending audio is a great way for your content to reach new audiences, and there’s always a bunch that pop up during the holiday season, so make sure to hop on those audio trends immediately.
As previously mentioned, make sure to not created overly edited and curated videos for TikTok. Younger generations and the platform culture as a whole dislike this type of content.
Make sure to leverage trends
The best way to grow your audience and reach is to take advantage of trends early on. You’ll be able to notice what’s trending due to the interaction analytics and how many people are creating similar content.
For example, every holiday season creators and brands alike leverage the trending hashtag #unboxing to maximize their videos reach. The same can be said for the hashtag #giftideas.
Link to the Report
The holiday season is a great time to focus your energy and efforts on TikTok and increase your audience. Make sure to plan ahead and take advantage of all the tips we’ve shared in this article for holiday campaign success.
The “2023 Holiday Campaign Report” by TikTok can be found in PDF format via this link.