Social Media Blogs by Aliza Sherman
Aliza Sherman is a web pioneer, author, and international speaker. Sherman is the author of 8 books about the Internet including The Everything Blogging Book, Streetwise Ecommerce, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Crowdsourcing and Social Media Engagement for Dummies.

5 Ways to Use TikTok or Reels for Your Business

5 Ways to Use TikTok or Reels for Your Business

Short, dynamic videos with catchy soundtracks are trending on popular social networks like TikTok and on Instagram Reels. How can you leverage this booming trend to promote your business, products, or services?

First, think about whom you are trying to reach. TikTok tends to skew younger - teens in particular - but that doesn’t exclude older age groups. Instagram Reels skews a little older and can reach a broader and more diverse audience than TikTok.

Next, examine the popular videos on TikTok and on Instagram Reels. Many of these videos have a certain look, often with text captions appearing throughout them that highlight key messages. Trending videos also feature a specific clip of music or an audio track with a voiceover that could be applied to different visuals to take on new meaning. For example, a voiceover talking about love could showcase a video featuring food or pets or floral arrangements or real estate or fashion or travel destinations, you name it.

If you’re looking to use TikTok of Instagram Reels to market your business, think about ways you can combine visuals and captions to convey key messages about your brand. Just getting started? Try an Instagram Reels template to guide you on what visuals to use and how to match them to the audio track. If appropriate, you could take the video you produce through Reels and upload it to your TikTok account.

What should your TikTok or Reel feature? There are many things you could cover in these videos. Here are five ideas on how you can use them to promote what you do.

  1. Demo your product. If you are selling a product - or products - come with a manual, think about breaking down the steps in short videos. Add popular music and spell out key instructions in text captions. If you have a product that isn’t complicated, look for another angle to showcase it. Is it a lifestyle product such as anything related to fashion, beauty, travel, or even food or beverages? Show your product in various settings, such as a beverage that you can enjoy poolside, at a party, or on a road trip.
  2. Take people behind the scenes. People like to know the people behind the company or what makes a company tick. Feature your team in videos talking about what they do at the company. Take people on tours showing off the inner workings of your company.
  3. Showcase your expertise. If you’re a café, feature a short video showing how you assemble your signature dishes. If you’re a hairdresser, show before and after hair videos. A dentist? Before and after teeth treatments could attract attention and show what you can do for patients. Are you a consultant? Your videos could feature you providing some quick tips to demonstrate your knowledge - about taxes, real estate, fashion, or whatever you’re offering
  4. Tell a Story. Any time you are explaining something to a customer or prospect, you’re telling a story. This does not mean you are being dishonest. It means you are finding a compelling way to convey information. You can tell stories about the founding of your company and the reasons you do what you do or about a cause you believe in related to your work. You can tell client stories as case studies or anonymous patient stories to tell what you do through other people’s experiences.
  5. Entertain. Not every company should be on social media offering entertainment, but if it is appropriate for your brand, being entertaining is a great way to attract attention. Try making funny skits that involve your product or service by showing a common, relatable problem and showing how what you offer is the solution. Humor isn’t the only form of entertainment. Drama can be equally as compelling. A company producing first aid kits could produce re-enactments of ways people might sustain injuries and how to perform first aid. A florist can pull at heartstrings with the many ways flowers can be used to celebrate, commemorate, and comfort.

No matter how you decide to use TikTok or Instagram Reels, take time to see what other people are producing. Check out what videos are trending and analyze what they have in common. Use trending tactics but also find ways to make them your own in order to stay on brand. Exploration and experimentation are part of social media marketing but always keep an eye on your brand image and, more importantly, your audience and business goals.

Read other social media blogs by Aliza Sherman