A Beginner’s Guide to Running Ads on TikTok


With its ever-growing popularity and massive user base, TikTok has become a lucrative platform for businesses to reach younger audiences and promote their products or services. Running ads on TikTok can be a game-changer for your marketing strategy, but it’s essential to understand the platform’s nuances and advertising options to make the most out of your campaigns. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of running ads on TikTok and provide valuable tips to optimize your ad performance.

1. Create a TikTok Business Account

Before you can start running ads on TikTok, you’ll need to create a TikTok Business Account. If you already have a personal account, you can easily switch to a business account from the settings menu. Having a business account will grant you access to TikTok’s advertising tools and analytics, allowing you to track the performance of your ads effectively.

2. Familiarize Yourself with TikTok Ad Formats

TikTok offers several ad formats to suit different marketing objectives. The main ad formats include:

a. In-Feed Ads: These are native ads that appear in users’ “For You” page feed as they scroll through content. They can be up to 60 seconds long and support various call-to-action buttons to direct users to your website or app.

b. Branded Hashtag Challenges: Brands can create sponsored hashtag challenges to encourage user-generated content and engagement. When users click on the sponsored hashtag, they are taken to a page with instructions for the challenge.

c. TopView Ads: These are fullscreen, auto-playing video ads that appear when users first open the TikTok app. They provide excellent visibility but are relatively expensive.

d. Branded Effects: Brands can create and promote branded augmented reality (AR) effects, stickers, and filters that users can apply to their videos. This format is engaging and fosters brand interaction.

e. Branded Content: Partnering with TikTok influencers to create branded content is another effective way to promote your brand or product authentically.

3. Define Your Target Audience and Budget

Before launching your TikTok ad campaign, it’s crucial to define your target audience. TikTok’s ad manager allows you to target users based on demographics, interests, behaviors, and other parameters. By specifying your audience, you can ensure your ads reach the most relevant users, increasing the chances of conversion.

Additionally, set a clear budget for your campaign. TikTok offers different bidding options, including Cost Per Click (CPC) and Cost Per Mille (CPM). Start with a daily or lifetime budget that aligns with your marketing goals and gradually optimize based on the performance of your ads.

4. Design Engaging and Creative Ads

TikTok is all about creativity and authenticity. Your ads should align with the platform’s fun and entertaining nature. Create visually appealing videos with a clear message that resonates with your target audience. Shorter videos often perform better, so aim to keep your ads concise and impactful.

Experiment with TikTok’s music library, filters, and effects to add flair to your ads and make them stand out. Consider leveraging user-generated content and incorporating trending challenges to increase engagement.

5. Monitor and Optimize Your Campaigns

Once your ads are live, closely monitor their performance using TikTok’s ad manager. Keep an eye on key metrics such as click-through rates, conversion rates, and engagement levels. Based on the data, optimize your campaigns by adjusting targeting, ad creative, or budget allocation to maximize results.


Running ads on TikTok can be a rewarding venture for businesses aiming to expand their reach and connect with a younger, dynamic audience. By creating compelling ads, targeting the right audience, and continuously optimizing your campaigns, you can make the most of TikTok’s advertising potential and achieve your marketing objectives. Embrace the platform’s creative spirit, and your brand could become the next viral sensation on TikTok!

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