TikTok — it’s a platform that never stops evolving. And luckily for brands and marketers, one of the key priorities in the TikTok boardroom has always been advertising. In the early days of TikTok, ad options were relatively limited. You could upload videos to the TikTok Ads Manager dashboard and they would be seen by users in between other content. But as TikTok has grown, so too have the advertising options available to brands. A 2021 addition was Spark Ads on TikTok.
So, what are Spark Ads? And what makes them such a valuable tool for brands? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at TikTok Spark Ads. This includes exploring how you can leverage them to achieve your marketing goals.
“[Spark Ads] are served between other content in the For You Page (FYP). They’re designed to look and feel like organic TikTok videos — because they are. This is the beauty of Spark Ads. You can take organic content (with the creator’s permission) and promote it to a targeted audience.”
What Are TikTok Spark Ads?
Have you ever seen organic user-generated content on TikTok and wished your brand could have been the one behind it? Well, Spark Ads on TikTok are the answer. A Spark Ad is a short, creative video that is designed to attract users to your brand and click on a CTA. These ads are served between other content in the For You Page (FYP). They’re designed to look and feel like organic TikTok videos — because they are. This is the beauty of Spark Ads. You can take organic content (with the creator’s permission) and promote it to a targeted audience. Like Instagram’s “boost” feature, Spark Ads allow you to take your best organic TikTok content and ensure it’s seen by more people. You can specify the age, location, and interests of the users you want to target. Thereafter, TikTok will serve your Spark Ad accordingly.
Spark Ads are also an excellent way to team up with key influencers and create meaningful organic content that reaches further and promotes engagement. Because Spark Ads allow for all the usual features of regular organic content, such as likes, comments, and shares, to be present in the ads. As organic engagements remain in Spark ads, this increases social conformity in viewers of the ads and further increases engagement with these ads. Spark ads are a great way to encourage users to discuss and learn more about your brand.
Why choose TikTok Spark Ads instead of normal ads?
Engagement rates on Spark Ads are, on average, higher than those of regular TikTok Ads. This makes them an effective tool for driving awareness and interest in your business. Your organic engagements remain on Spark Ads, whereas there are no organic engagements on normal TikTok ads.
What Makes TikTok Spark Ads So Effective?
There are several reasons why your brand should consider using Spark Ads over other ad types on TikTok. Firstly, TikTok Spark Ads allow you to make the most of existing content — potentially reducing your ad budget. But there are even more benefits to using Spark Ads as part of your marketing campaign. We highlight some of these below.
Leverage Influencer Creativity
Spark Ads are one of the easiest ways to team up with key influencers. You can give them free rein to use their creativity and skill to create natural and engaging content. This results in content that is indistinguishable from organic content. It means users are far more likely to watch and engage with.
Boost Your Best Content
If you have content that is performing well organically, spark ads can give it an extra boost. This ensures it reaches even more people and maximises the return on your content investment. You can rest assured that your best content continues to perform.
Generate Leads & Sales
Because spark ads allow you to include a CTA, they are an excellent way to generate installs, leads and sales. You can link Spark Ads directly to your website or landing page. This makes the user journey from spark ad to conversion as smooth as possible.
Target A Specific Audience
With Spark Ads on TikTok, you still have the ability to target a specific audience with your content. This ensures that your content is seen by the people who are most likely to be interested in it. It also allows you to track the performance of your spark ads based on the audience you’re targeting.
Achieve Your Marketing Goals
Since Spark Ads are such a versatile ad type, you can use them to achieve a variety of marketing goals. Whether you’re looking to generate leads and registrations, increase installs, improve brand awareness, or promote a new product, Spark Ads are flexible enough to help you achieve nearly any marketing objective.
How To Create A Spark Ad
Creating Spark Ads on TikTok is simple. If you want to use influencer content, you need to follow a few simple steps.
What The Influencer Needs To Do
Before turning content into a TikTok Spark Ad, the video creator must opt-in to allow the content to be used as an ad. This is a quick and easy process that can be completed in just a few clicks. Under their privacy settings, they can turn on the “ad authorization” toggle. Once they’ve done this, they must go to the specific TikTok video that your brand wants to turn into a Spark Ad and tap the three dots in the corner. From there, they should select ‘Ad settings’ and agree to the “Advertising Terms of Service”. They can then select the ad duration as requested by your brand and select “authorise”. This will generate a code, which they should copy and provide to you.
Authorised video codes look like this:
What The Brand Needs To Do
The brand must input the code into their TikTok Ads manager. Under the “creative” tab, select the Spark Ads list and click “Apply for Authorisation”. Here you can put the ad code into the search bar, and once your video comes up, click confirm. After this, you can create a campaign and set up an ad group. Selecting the Spark Ads format, you can authorise the post, choose your relevant ad settings, and add a CTA. Once you’re happy with everything, click submit to publish.
How Brands Are Leveraging TikTok Spark Ads
The TikTok For Business Blog shared a case study of how one brand — a digital banking app named Up — used spark ads to build awareness and brand love.
In line with their aim to reach 18-34-year-old Australians, they teamed up with a local Australian #fintok influencer named @TashInvests to create a Spark Ad. The Spark Ad was designed to show how easy and fun managing finances can be with Up. The ad generated an impressive 1.5 million impressions, 36,000 likes, and 76 installations of the app.
And Up isn’t the only business to have seen success with TikTok Spark Ads. Hootsuite ran their own experiment using Spark Ads. They were able to reach their target audience at a fraction of the cost of other ad types. One of their test campaigns achieved a Click-Through Rate (CTR) of 4.57%. This is well above the average CTR found on other social media sites such as Facebook (1.11%) and Instagram (0.22%). Their Cost Per Click (CPC) was just $0.09, which is also dramatically lower than Facebook’s average CPC of $0.50.
The bottom line is TikTok Spark Ads are both efficient and affordable. This also makes them the perfect ad type for small businesses and startups. If you’re on a tight budget, Spark Ads might are a great way to maximise your social media advertising efforts on TikTok without blowing your budget.
Driving up to 50% More Conversions with Spark Ads
If you’d like to drive more installs, sales or leads with Spark Ads, feel free to get in touch with us. We’re House of Marketers, a leading TikTok Marketing Agency that was co-founded by one of TikTok’s first UK employees, Inigo Rivero (ex TikTok Strategy and Partnerships Manager). Get in touch here to talk to us about driving down your CPAs with our TikTok Influencer and TikTok Paid Media campaign experts.
House of Marketers (HOM) is a leading TikTok Marketing Agency. Our global agency was built by early TikTok Employees & TikTok Partners, which gives us the insider knowledge to help leading brands, like Redbull, Playtika, Badoo, and HelloFresh win on TikTok. Want us to convert more of Gen Z and Millennials with TikTok? Get in touch with our friendly team, here.