TikTok Experiments With Search Ads

TikTok began testing ads in search results for select partners, providing another way for brands to reach the platform’s users based on phrases and terms.

The search ads are tagged with a Sponsored label that serve up above the “others searched for” terms listing on the search results page.

This option should enable TikTok advertisers to target searchers looking for specific items or information.

“We're constantly exploring new ways to bring value to our community,” said a TikTok spokesperson. “Search, among many other functions on TikTok, enable users to discover diverse content and engage with what they love. As our platform evolves, we will continue to experiment with ways to enrich the TikTok experience.”

David Herrmann, president of Herrmann Digital, a paid-social advertising company, tweeted that “Once you have the ability to run ads in search results (in beta) on TikTok you can began to pull the search terms of the ads that converted.”



He writes that the next step is to make a list of those search terms and "begin putting those as titles in your top-performing TikToks to get new life out of them.”

Platforms will need to find new ways to generate revenue as life is turned upside down, and recession and war come between a company and the way it has historically generated revenue.

IPG Mediabrands’ Magna revised U.S. ad-growth estimates down 1.5 percentage points based on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The data released on Monday shows final 2021 U.S. ad-spend estimates.

U.S. advertising revenue grew by 25% to reach $287 billion, but the pace of growth continued to slow in the fourth quarter -- about 14% year-over-year (YoY) compared with 26% in Q3 2021 and 46% in Q2 2021.

All media types benefited from the strong economic environment and spending recovery. Notably, Search grew 42%, and social grew 36%.

Most media types will grow advertising revenue again in 2022, according to Magna Global. Search is expected to rise 17% as lower-funnel media channels, and organic growth of ecommerce spending should mostly insulate search from macroeconomic volatility. 

Herrmann suggests the ads such as those describing “how-to” should solve problems rather than just sell something -- driving the viewer to advertorial pages.

“This is Pinterest 2.0, but better cause people buy,” he wrote.

Search ads are another piece of the ad performance-driven offering for creators and brands. Others include in-feed, top view, brand takeover pages, smart audience targeting, real-time monitoring, and more.

TikTok allows businesses to run ads in the following formats: in-feed, top-view, brand takeover, branded hashtag challenge, and branded effects.

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