TikTok Ads | How to advertise on TikTok step by step

Do you know which was the most downloaded app in 2022? Exactly, TikTok . And this application, which has approximately 1.05 billion active users , is one of the fastest growing. It has currently positioned itself as the fourth most popular social network , only behind Facebook, YouTube and Instagram. 

On the other hand, its advertising campaign platform, TikTok Ads , is becoming a very interesting tool for companies that want to advertise and develop their digital marketing strategy .

Do you want to know how to advertise on TikTok Ads to make the most of all the business opportunities that this social network offers? Below we show you how to do it step by step. 

list_altTable of Contents
  • What is TikTok and how companies can use it
  • What is TikTok Ads?
  • Why advertise with TikTok Ads?
  • Advantages of TikTok Ads
  • TikTok Ads: formats and their main benefits
  • How to launch a campaign on TikTok Ads step by step
  • How to analyze your TikTok Ads campaigns
  • Tips to optimize your TikTok Ads campaigns
  • Examples of successful campaigns on TikTok
  • TikTok Ads: Conclusion

What is TikTok and how companies can use it

TikTok is a mobile application in the social media category that allows users  to create, edit and share short videos  (maximum 1 minute) with music, filters and other features (artificial intelligence and augmented reality functions, eye-catching special effects…) .

One of the reasons that has made it famous is that it offers all its functionalities in a very simple way. Everyone can make fun and original videos without having any editing knowledge. In fact, its original name is Doyin (“shake music”), and it is still known as that in China.

With the data we told you about at the beginning, it is quite clear that TikTok is a very interesting platform for companies when it comes to advertising, but how, exactly, can companies  use TikTok ?

On the one hand, today the application already allows you to add a  link in the user’s biography . This means that you can add a link to attract traffic to your website. This is the same formula that Instagram uses and, although at first it may seem like a not very useful format for companies, today it is one of the social networks that companies most demand for their online marketing strategies.

On the other hand, through  TikTok Ads you can configure advertising campaigns  for your business. Let’s see exactly what it is and how you can use it in your digital marketing strategy. 

What is TikTok Ads?

The accelerated growth of TikTok, along with the arrival of more and more brands interested in the platform, prompted the release of TikTok Ads, a new tool for designing advertising campaigns . It is a platform very similar to other social networks that allows brands and companies to publish ads in a simple way. 

TikTok Ads offers a series of creative formats that allow ads to be integrated into users’ feeds in a very natural way . This, together with the particular organic reach that the platform normally offers, enhances the possibilities of brands and allows them to reach their potential clients, gain more followers or improve their branding. 

TikTok Ads Manager is the platform that allows companies to configure their campaigns. It is an ad center specially designed so that any brand can publish ads on TikTok, using different advertising formats, segmenting its audience and selecting the desired budget. 

Why advertise with TikTok Ads?

TikTok Ads is in general a very interesting platform because of its enormous growth. So much so that its number of active users already exceeds Twitter or Snapchat and is getting closer to Instagram. However, numbers aside, there are two things you should keep in mind to decide if it is a right social network for your business.

Is your buyer persona on TikTok?

The first question you have to ask yourself is  if you are going to find your buyer persona on TikTok . The  buyer persona  is an archetype of the ideal customer of a service or product. Therefore, it is that potential client that we are interested in attracting to ensure that they end up being our client. To reach our buyer persona we have to ask ourselves if we are going to find them on TikTok or not.

TikTok is a platform that is having great success among teenagers (generation Z). According to Statista (2023),  40% of TikTok users are between 12 and 24 years old . Despite this, TikTok is expanding its audience and its use among millennials and other generations is increasingly common. 

Therefore, if you target a primarily young audience, TikTok and its TikTok Ads advertising platform can be a good marketing option for your company. 

If not, you should keep in mind that, sometimes, statistics escape reality, and perhaps your company’s sector is attracting a more mature audience that, little by little, is moving to this platform. In fact, this is the natural evolution of social networks. (Facebook or Instagram are great examples)

So the most advisable thing is that you carry out an exhaustive search on this social network , investigate the habits, tastes or interests of your potential client and draw your own conclusions.

Do you have the budget to advertise on TikTok?

The second question you should ask yourself is  whether you have the right budget . First of all, keep in mind TikTok Ads is more expensive than other platforms, such as Facebook or Instagram, since the ads on TikTok are quite recent. However, it is likely that over time they will go down and, by optimizing your campaigns well, you can reduce them.

To ensure that your ads have a sufficient budget,  the minimum budget at the campaign level is €50 per day and at the ad group level, €20 per day . You should keep in mind that this amount may vary depending on the ad objective, sector, audience or bidding method. 

Advantages of TikTok Ads

The “music that shakes” platform has thought about companies (a lot). These are the main benefits of advertising on TikTok:

  • It is an effective way to reach Generation Z and new audiences, including the foreign market.
  • You can advertise and transmit your message with a different, entertaining and interactive format.
  • Like other social networks, you can set a budget to ensure you don’t go over your maximum.
  • As it is a relatively new social network, it is not yet saturated, therefore, you face less competition.
  • Furthermore, and as we have already seen, it grows at an exponential rate.

TikTok Ads: formats and their main benefits

If after all you think that including TikTok Ads in your digital marketing strategy is a good idea, congratulations, you are about to start a new and exciting adventure. However, before starting any action, it is important to know in depth everything that TikTok Ads offers to promote your brand.

The most notable thing about this platform is the different types of ad formats available, and although there are some that are very similar to what we are used to, others, however, are not so common. Let’s take a look at the different options. 


In this type of ad, a video of maximum 1 minute is shown in the  most visible location on TikTok . Its content format is usually video, so narrative pieces can be included, as well as different visual and sound effects.

Source: TikTok For Business

Brand Takeover

Similar to the previous one, the ad will be shown in full screen once users open the app, but, in this case, with a video of  maximum 3-5 seconds . It is the advertising format with the greatest impact, although its use is limited to one advertiser per day and country. It is also the most expensive type of ad. 


In-Feed Ads

It is the most used type of ad, and consists of the  ads that appear in the feed , along with the rest of the content published by users. This allows users to more easily show their reaction, leading to improved brand interaction data. It is also in video format of maximum 1 minute, and in this case the pricing system works by dynamic bidding according to:

  • Cost per click (CPC)
  • Cost per thousand impressions (CPM)
  • Cost per view (CPV)


Source: TikTok For Business

Branded Hashtag Challenge

Another type of TikTok Ads is one that asks users to  participate in a challenge  and encourages them to try it by uploading content with a certain hashtag. It is an interesting format, as it harnesses the power of user-created content and has a high potential for  virality and visibility . What you get is a banner within the trends tab for 3 or 6 days, and it also has a high price.

Branded Lenses or Brand Effects

This format  is the most creative of TikTok Ads,  as it allows the brand to create custom augmented reality filters for users to use and share. To do this you need help from TikTok technical support, so the price is also quite high.

Source: TikTok For Business

Spark Ads

Spark Ads is an ad format that tries to boost organic content, whether published on your own account or by other content creators. In the privacy section, each user can mark whether their publications can be used to make advertisements or not. It appears in the “For You” Feed and is shown to users with similar tastes, just like any other post. 

Shopping Ads

With the inclusion of TikTok Shopping , the integration of ecommerce on the platform, a type of ad has also been included to advertise products. Shopping Ads allow you to give visibility to your business products to increase sales. There are two types of formats, Video Shopping Ads , for classic publications, and Live Shopping Ads , which allows you to advertise products through live broadcasts. 


Finally, TikTok Ads also offers the Promote functionality , which allows you to publish ads from the app itself in just 5 steps: 

  1. You choose one of your publications
  2. You set a goal: views, visits or followers. 
  3. You set a budget.
  4. You select the period of time you want to show the ad
  5. You enter a payment method. 

Ready, after a brief review, your ad will begin to circulate on TikTok. 

Beyond TikTok Ads: influencer marketing, TikTok’s other great asset

In addition to the advertising formats mentioned, we cannot overlook the alternative of promoting our products and services on TikTok through influencer marketing . This type of advertising is increasingly used on social networks. However, on TikTok, where posts take on an even more personal character and the audience tends to be younger, it can be more effective. 

To do this, the influencer will exhibit the products through videos of between 15 seconds and one minute, but the budget and the type of advertising carried out will depend on each agreement, so the conditions of the commercial agreement, the public of each influencer and, also, keep in mind that the results will be more imprecise.

Which TikTok advertising format has convinced you the most?

Of all the advertising formats that TikTok offers us, the most affordable is  In Feed ads . So the most convenient thing is to start with this format and, if you see that it works for you, you can gradually increase your budget.

In this way, if you decide to invest in advertising on TikTok, it is very possible that you will be able to increase the database of possible clients interested in your brand and, at the same time, implement other strategies. And, as with Facebook and other social networks,  TikTok allows you to implement pixel code  and track events to track user behavior. Everything is connected!

Now, first  make sure that you create quality audiovisual content  adapted to what users expect to consume  on this platform. If, to begin with, the budget to create advertising campaigns is inherently higher, you must keep in mind that  the investment in creativity will also have to be greater .

Then you will have to apply the step by step of launching a campaign on TikTok. Let’s see it below.

How to launch a campaign on TikTok Ads step by step

Once you know whether or not advertising on TikTok is suitable for your company and what formats exist, we move on to see how you can launch a campaign on TikTok Ads step by step:

1. Create a TikTok Business account

The first step is  to create a TikTok account for your company  and follow the registration process, something that will be very simple and quick for you. You must add all the necessary information: country, time zone, name, telephone number, billing currency or if you work for an agency. After completing this step, you will be ready to create your ad. 

2. TikTok Ads Manager Dashboard

The second step is to get the structure of an advertising campaign in the TikTok Ads Manager panel, which is very similar to that of Facebook Ads. On TikTok we have:

  • Advertising account manager,  where we can view the development of the campaigns and make some configurations.
  • Campaign : at this level of creation we can configure objectives, dates, budget and adsets.
  • Ad group:  Choose the type of targeting and bids.
  • Ads:  Select the creatives that will make up each ad on TikTok. 

3. Create an ad campaign

Once you have your account and control the ad structure and the interface of the TikTok advertising platform, it is time to create your campaigns. To do this you will have to click on  Campaigns > Create . Next, you must give your campaign a name and choose what its  advertising objective will be:

  • Scope
  • Web traffic
  • Video views
  • Conversions
  • App downloads
  • Lead Generation

You can also  select the  budget (with a minimum of €50 per day), with the possibility of choosing between “daily budget” or “total budget” depending on the type of control you want to establish over your ads or what your advertising objectives are. . Likewise, you can select if you want to do an  A/B test  to optimize your results (highly recommended).

Source: TikTok For Business

4. Set up an ad group within the campaign

The next step is setting up an ad group within the campaign. Here you will have to configure:

  • Type of promotion : if you want to redirect the user to your website or to download your app.
  • Placement : You can select whether to appear on TikTok (in-feed ads) or on the entire family of related apps, such as TopBuzz, BuzzVideo, NewsRepublic, Pangle, Helo… Please note that you will not be able to change this setting once you have created the group of advertisements. If you don’t know which one to choose, you can select either TikTok or the automatic option, so that the platform itself decides where to put it based on how it thinks you can get better results.
  • Segmentation : choose which group of users you want to reach to target your buyer persona based on the following options:
    • Demographic data: segment your TikTok ads by age (which appears broken down by ranges: 13-17, 18-24, 25-34, 34-44, +55…).
    • Location: select country, region and province.
    • Categories of interests.
    • Device used, operating system or connection mode.
    • Custom audiences: include/exclude Looklike Audiences or Custom Audiences (by user activity and behavior: web traffic, engagement, app activity…).
  • Other details : An interesting setting is the option to choose up to a total of 20 keywords to target your audience. Additionally, in this same section you can enter URLs, display names, etc.
  • Budget : Choose the daily budget for this ad group (minimum €20), the dates you want it to be active during, and whether you want it to show all day or at specific times.
  • Delivery type : Choose between “standard” or “accelerate” to tell TikTok how to distribute the delivery rate and how you want the budget to be consumed. With this second option, the budget will be spent as quickly as possible.
  • Bidding and optimization : you can choose between:
    • Conversion – to be shown to people most likely to convert. In this case, you will be charged using  OCPC  (optimized cost per click).
    • Click : with the aim of achieving the maximum possible number of clicks. In this case it will be charged according to the CPC (cost per click) model.
    • Impressions : here the objective will be to be shown as many times as possible and will be charged with the CPM (cost per thousand impressions).

Other settings of interest in TikTok Ads

In addition, at the ad group level it is also possible to choose if you want your ads to be shown at certain times of the day or for TikTok itself to automatically choose the times when the ads will run.

Finally, take into account the possibility of activating or not the “Smart Optimization” option, which, if you have chosen the conversion objective, will allow you to optimize the delivery of your ads. However, if your objective is reach or clicks, it is advisable to deactivate this option.

5. Design the ad

This step will allow you to design the ad you want to promote. In  this article  you have some tips to create memorable ads.

You will also have to choose:

  • Display name : a catchy name consistent with the brand/product/service you are promoting.
  • Text : You will also have to add text to accompany the ad, which helps your audience fully understand what you are promoting. In this case, it must be between 1 and 100 characters.
  • Call to action : the action you want people to take when they see your ad (register, request, install…).
  • URL – The URL of the website you want to redirect them to.
  • Tracking : especially for actions that involve a conversion, we recommend tracking using the  TikTok pixel .


And last but not least: don’t forget to test and optimize your campaigns based on the results!

How to analyze your TikTok Ads campaigns

As in any other type of digital marketing strategy, the work does not end with the publication of an ad with TikTok Ads. Measuring and analyzing your ad campaigns is vital to obtain better results and check what type of ad format works best for you, as well as adjust your audience segmentation or improve the quality of your content. 

TikTok Ads Manager offers a complete panel of metrics and data that you can use to analyze and evaluate the performance of your campaigns. Impressions, clicks, CTR, conversions, CPA, average viewing time, engagement rate… These metrics will give you a clear view of how your campaign is performing and where you may need to make adjustments.

In addition to the platform itself offered by TikTok, you can also use external applications such as Metricool. This popular marketing tool allows you to connect with your TikTok For Business account to record all the metrics you need. In addition, with its premium version you can also create personalized reports easily. 

Tips to optimize your TikTok Ads campaigns

As you can see, creating, designing, and launching an ad with TikTok Ads is relatively simple. However, to obtain good results, and above all, profitability, it will be necessary to play with the different options offered by the platform, as well as make attractive advertisements or know your target audience very well.

Ultimately, you’ll have to learn the best way to advertise on TikTok through trial and error. However, there are a number of tips and tricks that can help you save time and money. Here are a few: 

  • Vertical: to make the most of TikTok’s features, your ad content must be recorded vertically
  • Attractive: Remember to always use high-quality videos and images. The level of the platform in this aspect is high. Engaging content is key. 
  • Tone: TikTok has a casual, creative, authentic and fun tone. Your ads will have to follow these characteristics if you want to achieve your objectives. 
  • Segmentation: know your audience very well and refine your segmentation. If you’re not sure, you can also use the broad audience option to let TikTok’s AI find the best target for your ads. 
  • TikTok creative tools : The platform offers different tools to make creating your ads and content easier.
    • Creativity center: follow trends, get inspired by other users or discover current challenges. 
    • Creator Marketplace – Discover creators who may fit your brand. 
    • Creator Exchange: Connect with other editors to create your videos. 
    • Creative tools : Use TikTok templates for your videos or discover what tools you can employ. 
  • CTA: you must use clear calls to action that help you achieve your objectives. Use only one CTA per ad. 
  • Copy: There is very little space for text on TikTok, so you need to reduce and design very precise copy. 
  • A/B Test: TikTok Ads allows you to do A/B testing, so take advantage of this tool to understand what works for you and what doesn’t. 
  • Choose the most appropriate format : as you gain experience, you will be able to check which format is most suitable for each of your campaigns.
  • Optimize the conversion event: If your ads need to generate specific actions, remember to use the most appropriate TikTok optimization options. 
  • Monitor in real time: a campaign does not need to end to make changes. Analyze the results in real time and optimize on the fly. 
  • TikTok Pixel : Like Facebook, you can install the TikTok Pixel on your website to measure the performance of your ads more accurately. 

Examples of successful campaigns on TikTok

Below we leave you some examples of advertising on TikTok that have had very good results. Get inspired!

Universal Pictures

Universal  used TikTok Ads to promote their movie  The House with a Clock in Its Walls . In this case they used the Hashtag Challenge format   with the theme #FindYourMagic, which allowed users to share content showing their own magic.


Source: TikTok For Business

This campaign resulted in over 1.3 million video likes, over 19,000 user posts, and an increase of 11,000 users for the brand.


Guess  wanted to promote their Fall ’18 Denim Fit collection during the back-to-school season. They also launched the same campaign format, with the  hashtag  #InMyDenim, encouraging users to show off their fashion style, transforming what could be a disaster of  a look  into a cool one.

As a result, Guess gained over 5,550 user videos, 10.5 million views, a 14.3% engagement rate, and over 12,000 new followers.

Ralph Lauren

The most memorable advertising campaign that this brand has done on TikTok (to date) is that of the US Open Tennis Championship with the hashtag #USOpen, and it was thanks to the videos of the influencer Dianna Silver that the label became popular to the point of get about 8 million views. This achievement allowed the brand to combine the custom hashtag #WinningRL with no more and no less than 600 million views!


Mars ‘ goal   was to publicize TREAT TOWN™, an initiative they launched during COVID-19 to celebrate Halloween from home. In this case, they took advantage of the  In-Feed format  and amplified the campaign with  TopView , which made Mars the first TikTok that people saw when they opened the app.

Source: TikTok For Business

The results were also very positive, with more than 123 million video views, more than 70,000 downloads of its app and a 14.2% increase in brand awareness.


In this case,  Netflix  wanted to increase the visibility of its new show “Sing On! Germany”, so they used a  Hashtag Challenge  with the theme #SingOnGermany. And, to further engage users, they created a  branding effect  so users could use it while singing, as if they were at karaoke.


Source: TikTok For Business

With more than 600 million views, this campaign had great participation and generated great awareness of this new Netflix show.

TikTok Ads: Conclusion

As we have just seen,  TikTok is a social network that is experiencing very high growth , and that is why there are more and more companies that choose to advertise on this platform. TikTok Ads is an excellent tool, easy to use and with many possibilities for brands and influencers. 

On the other hand, we must not lose sight of the fact that, above all, it is a social network for those companies that are aimed at  younger profiles and that have a campaign budget of around €50 per day . However, you can always create an account and start posting content to see if your audience is present on TikTok.

If you think you may be interested, we encourage you to follow the steps detailed in the article to create a successful campaign. If you have any questions about how to advertise on TikTok or your digital marketing strategy, you can  contact us and we will be happy to help you

About Author

My self Umer. I’m an Author and Founder of starqms.com. I’m from Pune and If I talk about my Education then I’m B.com Graduate and complete my MBA (Finance & Accounts). I love to share my experience and knowledge to others, that’s why I’m here.

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