How to Create a Restaurant TikTok Profile (And Why You Should!)
What’s the deal with TikTok? You’ve probably seen the platform mentioned in the news over the last few months. If you’re like us, you’ve spent endless hours scrolling through videos, marveling at users’ editing prowess. From challenges to skits and lip-syncing, the app is useful in a variety of ways, but can a restaurant TikTok profile help your marketing efforts?
Videos have become shorter in correlation with our perception of the human attention span. Let’s begin with Vine, which (unfortunately!) died in 2017. Then came Musical.ly, which launched in China and the United States in 2014. Musical.ly’s niche demographic was American teenagers and by 2016 had reached 70 million downloads.
Coinciding with Musical.ly’s popularity, Chinese-based company Bytedance launched its app, Douyin, in the Chinese market. In 2017, Bytedance pushed the app into the international market, rebranding it as TikTok for the international stage. Then TikTok purchased Musical.ly in November 2017 to further expand into the United States market by combining the two apps under the TikTok name.
By Q1 2018, Tik Tok was the top free mobile app in various countries. Douyin still remains popular as an app in China. In the United States, TikTok additionally gained popularity because of early celebrity adoption. According to the Guardian, “the success of any burgeoning app is often tied to the early adoption of a key celebrity” including the likes of Jimmy Fallon, Tony Hawk, and Jason Derulo.
Who is TikTok’s target audience? Hint: if you’ve ever referred to the platform as “the TikityTok,” you’re probably NOT in that audience. Here’s what the data says:
- 42% of TikTok’s users are 18-24, 27% are 13-17 and 16% are 25-34.
- Most TikTok users are teen girls (60%).
- On average, people spend 49 minutes a day on TikTok.
- In the US, TikTok has on average 37 billion monthly video views.
- The app ranks sixth globally for consumer spending.
How to Create Your Restaurant TikTok Profile
Now, let’s move into what TikTok can do for your restaurant and why you may want to venture onto this platform. Let’s start by saying that luckily, customers no longer expect Hollywood-style commercials when it comes to video content. You just need to catch their attention.
Creating a restaurant TikTok profile will help generate brand exposure for your operation. Like we’ve mentioned in the demographics, people spend a lot of time on the platform. You can capture their attention and get your brand on their radar through challenges, culture sneak peeks and showing a more “human” side of your business.
The key to an effective TikTok strategy is to be active on the platform. The good news? There are numerous opportunities to be active and create original content.
How Can You Get Your Restaurant’s TikTok Profile Started?
Similar to most social media platforms, the app experience is user-friendly:
- Download the app.
- Create your username.
- Set up the email that goes with the account.
- Choose your profile’s photo.
- Provide a phone number to recover your account’s password.
Once you’ve gone through this process, you can begin creating your content for your restaurant TikTok.
Pro Tips for Restaurant TikTok Marketing
You’ve created your restaurant TikTok profile. Now, how can you market on TikTok?
- Create challenges – Participate in one and create one! Like most social media platforms, hashtags are a way to index content. Just be careful to align your brand with hashtags that match your mission and values. Need some examples of hashtag challenges?
- Work with Influencers – Working with people that have large followings and cater to your target audience can help get your restaurant exposure to more followers.
- Advertise – This is still a little new on the platform, but TikTok does offer four types of ads:
- In feed native content – Ads people see while scrolling through the feed.
- Brand takeovers – Collaborations with influencers that allow them access to your TikTok account.
- Branded lenses – Lenses that you create with your logos, imagery, and hashtags.
- Hashtag challenges – You have the option to promote them instead of starting your own in the beginning stages of your account.
- In feed native content – Ads people see while scrolling through the feed.
Keep in mind with advertising there are some restrictions. Before you can set up an ad account, you have to submit business information and in 48 hours you will be contacted by a representative. When it comes to prices, ad costs are a little high, starting at $10 per 1000 impressions and requiring a $500 minimum upfront fee.
The Benefits of Restaurant TikTok Marketing
Let’s get into the meat of why your restaurant should be on TikTok. On the surface, it seems very overwhelming. However, if you dig a little deeper, a restaurant TikTok may be worth all of the hype.
Social media is mostly about creating social proof. As we’ve seen, when a brand is recommended by more people, they are more likely to choose that business because of the endorsements. The power of social media lies within the ability for something to go viral. Take social media influencers. These people are trusted by their followers to make suggestions about products, brands, and more. They have the power to influence the decisions of those that are following them. With their large audiences, brands work with them to create that “peer endorsement” to encourage people to buy those products.
TikTok is not a platform that is necessarily great for generating leads, but when it comes to brand exposure, this is a great lane for any business. A restaurant TikTok allows your business to connect with a younger audience and seem even more relatable. Viewers see your restaurant participating in the dance challenges or regularly creating content and it keeps you at the forefront of their mind. Now, if they are trying to make a purchase decision, they are more likely to choose your restaurant to patronize if they see you across their TikTok timelines. Added bonus if you start a viral dance challenge that allows users to create their own content.
Eventually, these views can turn into revenue. As with any social media platform, the process isn’t always straightforward. The time from the top of the funnel at the initial interaction to making a purchase may be lengthy. However, consistently creating content or strategizing to secure an influencer in the space may be just what you need to push your content viral. Once you do that or maintain a consistent and active account, your social proof will intrigue new customers to want to visit your trendy restaurant. If you’re still not sure, check out these brands’ efforts on TikTok.
Creating a restaurant TikTok is something that will help expand your marketing efforts, especially if you want to reach and engage with your younger target audience. Encourage your employees and customers to participate in hashtag challenges or create content with your food. Even if you aren’t advertising on the platform, work with influencers in your community and have them help you spread the word about your restaurant. At the very least, you now have the answer to the question, “What’s all this about this Tikkity Tok?”
Subscribe to the blog for more interesting restaurant content!
About the Author
Devyn is the Social & PR Specialist on the Marketing Team. She has a B.S. in Communication and an M.S. in Global Strategic Communication. She liked QR codes (before they were cool) ever since a two-week trip to China. She’s obsessed with true crime and enjoys quality time with her friends and family. Ask her about books she’s read, Criminal Minds, her dog-child, or her favorite cocktails!