For anyone familiar with TikTok, Corporate Natalie is a name that instantly brings to mind smart jokes and videos about the 9-5 work culture in corporate America. She’s become one of the most popular creators in the community. In this article, she discusses her journey of becoming TikTok-famous, and also provides valuable advice for brands and creators just starting out on the platform.
Corporate Natalie: The TikTok Story
The Corporate Natalie persona began simply as a result of boredom, when she decided to create a series of funny videos targeting corporate life. She’d done a bit of stand up comedy and improv in her college days, so TikTok seemed like a logical platform for her to showcase her creativity. With very little technical knowledge about the app, she got started by making a few videos and sending them to her friends. Eventually, “A Day in the Work-From-Home Culture of Corporate America” went viral, and that’s how her TikTok journey really started.
The Path to Maximum Engagement
According to Corporate Natalie, the easiest way to get maximum TikTok engagement is to identify a niche and then stick to it. For her, it was corporate jokes about the 9-5 culture. Sometimes, she decides to stray from this niche and tries to make videos about something else, like make-up tutorials. When this happens, she suddenly finds that it is much harder to reach the same levels of engagement, whether on TikTok or other forms of social media. This is because the platform usually identifies a particular target audience and then begins to promote your content organically to that audience, who might be surprised if there is a sudden shift in the type of content being produced.
Brands & TikTok Marketing
TikTok is extremely valuable for brands today, and this is for good reason. If brands can create an image of themselves that’s hip, relevant and appeals to younger audiences (especially Gen Z), these market segments are suddenly much more likely to buy their products. This could be done in numerous ways, ranging from simply cashing in on trends to more nuanced stuff like fun banter with competing brands or engaging with audiences through comments.
Natalie believes that TikTok is easily the best social media platform for brands to try and get more engagement on, simply because of its wide reach and the number of people who make buying decisions based on content they see on the platform.
TikTok's USP for Brands
TikTok has a unique algorithm catered to CGC (Community Generated Content) that helps brands promote themselves by catering to liked-minded users, an advantage other social media platforms may not have. There are terms, songs, and comedic bits that would instantly click for a TikTok user, but wouldn’t make a lot of sense to users on other platforms.
By understanding TikTok’s community-based culture and appealing to audiences in a way that the CGC can be maximized, brands can create a very compelling marketing campaign that is unmatched by other platforms and their algorithms.
Successful TikTok Ad Campaigns
Natalie knows that the key to a successful TikTok ad campaign is organic, on-brand content. She’s been approached by companies that want her to do something that wasn’t on-brand for her, and she refused because it would hurt both her brand and the brand that she was advertising.
The best way to go about creating a TikTok advertising campaign is to figure out what the objective is first. You don’t need to have a million calls to action, just placing the product into the video (and consequently in the viewers’ minds) can sometimes be enough. You also need to find the right influencers who can adopt the product, make it on-brand for them, and still have some room left to give the ad a creative spin.
Brands & Creators - The Ideal Process
In order for brands to find the right creators, the first step is to identify your budget, and then decide how you wish to allocate those funds. You could decide to invest in a very large influencer, several micro-influencers, or anything in between. Regardless of what you choose, your budget and how many baskets you wish to put your eggs in is something you should be clear on from the very beginning.
The next step is looking at creators who could seamlessly integrate your brand with their videos. There are several lip-sync creators in TikTok who don’t speak directly to their audience, and for them, doing this would be very off-brand and wouldn’t be productive advertising. The key is to find a TikToker who has their own personality and branding, and integrate that with your goals.
How to Get Started on TikTok the Right Way
If you’re looking to get started on TikTok, the first thing you need to do is simply press post. Don’t be afraid of posting content, and don’t be afraid of pushback. There are always going to be people who do not like you or your content, and that’s okay. Fear of rejection or trying to create the perfect content will only inhibit your ability to garner attention on the app. The best time to get started is now, so start posting!
The next thing is to find a niche, and the easiest way to do this is to try out a bunch of stuff and see what works. Then, once you identify your own niche, just start creating videos, and the organic reach will then begin to flow.
Lastly, open the app and use TikTok too. Understand the community, the jargon, and the trends, as these are going to be invaluable for you when you start creating content. Have a personality when you post on the platform - create a brand and a message that is consistent throughout your videos, so people can identify you without ever having to look at the name of the poster. Engaging with the community you want to be a part of is the surest way of developing a following.
Expanding Onto Other Platforms
In the world of advertising and marketing, nothing is permanent, not even TikTok. Brands should look into expanding their reach onto other platforms too, and the best way to do this is simply posting as much as you can to see what works and what doesn’t.
You can modify your videos to make them more relevant to the other platforms. Start leveraging videos as multi-use formats that you can use repeatedly with different endings and takeaways. At the end of the day, inter-platform marketing is still very much a “quantity over quality” game, and you need to keep posting until you identify what works best.