TikTok attracts advertisers with brand confidence, admeasurement, and commercial drive

With its first global event for marketers, TikTok looks to show brands and marketers how it’s a viable platform on which to advertise. Despite increasing usage levels and industry trust, the social app has had trouble convincing marketers it’s a safe brand environment, owing in part to age-inappropriate material appearing alongside ads as well as influencer scandals. By working to clear up these problems, TikTok could redirect attention to how influencer marketing can spur consumer spending.

Among the features announced at TikTok World include an inventory filter aligned with the Global Alliance for Responsible Media’s (GARM) brand safety and suitability framework. The filter gives advertisers more control over where on the platform their ads run. A series of other safety solutions — designed with companies Integral Ad Science (IAS), OpenSlate, and Zefr — also seek to help brands place their ads near more relevant content.

Developments in admeasurement could further build marketers’ confidence in the app. TikTok announced a partnership with software platform DoubleVerify to offer advertisers campaign viewability, building on a similar tie-up the app has with Oracle’s Moat. Understanding how engagement leads to consumer purchasing is still an area in which digital activations lag compared to offline, and one that TikTok in particular must work to overcome to get brands on board with long-term influencer marketing.

TikTok also elaborated on its new in-app Shopping product. With first- and third-party integrations, brands can choose to what degree they wish to control their merchant experience. Current third-party partners include Shopify, Square, Ecwid, and PrestaShop, with more to be rolled out soon. The platform also reiterated two types of interactive ads that will be available to brands — collection ads and dynamic showcase ads (formerly dynamic product ads).

These latter announcements follow recent efforts by the platform to ramp up its e-commerce capabilities. TikTok in August teamed with Publicis to give the agency group’s clients special perks, like the ability to test upcoming products and participation in an incubator program. Such offerings are part of TikTok’s plan to push beyond solely Gen Z consumers to expand the pool of brands that advertise on the app.