Getting Started with TikTok Ads

by | Last updated Jun 21, 2022 | Digital Marketing

Read Time: 4 min read

Summary: TL;DR: TikTok, with over 680 million monthly users, offers unique advertising opportunities for brands. Ad types include Native In-Feed Content, Brand Takeovers, Hashtag Challenges, and Branded Lenses. Each ad format has its pros and cons, such as reach, engagement, and costs. Setting up TikTok ads involves working with an account manager or using the Ads Manager to create campaigns tailored to target audiences and budgets. Brands can leverage TikTok's exclusive features like hashtag challenges and branded lenses to drive engagement and reach a wider audience. If you're looking to enhance your social media advertising strategy, TikTok provides a platform with diverse ad options to explore and engage users effectively.

While TikTok is a newer social media platform compared to others like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, it already boasts more than 680 million monthly users. This gives brands and businesses a great opportunity to create advertisements and reach large audiences. If you’re looking to expand your social media advertising strategy, here are the type of ads you can create on TikTok and how to start setting them up!

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Types of TikTok Ads

There are four main types of TikTok ads available for you to create. While some are similar to what you might see on other social media platforms, they each have features that make them unique to TikTok.

You’re able to set your own TikTok budget at a minimum of $500 and $20 per ad group, as well as choose a bidding strategy of CPC (cost-per-click), CPM (cost-per-mille), CPV (cost-per-view), and even Lowest Cost (No Bid), which spends your lifetime budget with the lowest possible cost per result. Along with these choices, you’re able to set specific target audience metrics like location, age, interests, and more.

Native In-Feed Content

In-feed advertisements are short video ads that naturally appear on a user’s “For You Page” in between the other videos on their feed. These are somewhat similar to the ads you might see while tapping through Instagram Stories. When using in-feed ads, aim for them to be full-screen and enticing so users will want to stop scrolling and watch.


  • Includes a CTA for the viewer that’s clearer than other TikTok ads, such as downloading an app, visiting a website, shopping an online store, and more.
  • Users can like, comment, and share in-feed ads, much like a regular TikTok video, which can help increase engagement.
  • In-feed ads are integrated within a user’s “For You Page,” offering a more seamless viewing experience.


  • In-feed ads can be skipped easily if the video doesn’t grab a user’s attention in the first couple of seconds.
  • Brands must upload their own videos, write captions and CTAs, and include links, which may be time-consuming if you’re starting from scratch.

Brand Takeovers

Brand takeovers on TikTok appear right away when you open the app as a full-screen video, image, or GIF. While these are slightly more intrusive than native in-feed ads, users will see only one brand takeover ad per day. For these ad types, brands work with a TikTok account manager to help create and facilitate them.


  • Brand takeovers are great for reaching a mass audience.
  • This type of TikTok advertising can help drive direct sales.
  • Because brand takeovers are so exclusive, there isn’t a ton of competition with other brands.


  • Costs for brand takeovers can be high, as TikTok only shows one brand takeover ad to a user per day.
  • If a user closes the app too quickly or gets distracted after opening TikTok, they could easily miss the brand takeover announcement.

Hashtag Challenges

Hashtag Challenges are a type of advertising available only on TikTok and require you to work with an account manager from TikTok. Your brand can create a special hashtag and partner with influencers, as well as other TikTok users, to use the hashtag in their videos. Your challenge will be discoverable in three places on the app: in-feed videos, the TikTok “Discover Page,” and a Hashtag Challenge landing page.


  • Hashtag Challenges are exclusive to TikTok.
  • They encourage user-generated content and engagement.
  • TikTok hashtag challenges have the potential to go viral, meaning more people may interact with them.


  • If you want your hashtag challenge to appear on the TikTok “Discover Page,” expect to pay a hefty price.
  • Hashtag challenges can include shoppable content for your brand; however, other social media platforms offer similar shop features.

Branded Lenses

A newer advertising format on TikTok is branded lenses. These allow brands and businesses to create branded stickers and augmented reality (AR) filters that users can post in their videos. A TikTok account manager will work with your brand on creating and launching them in the app.


  • This ad format allows users to directly interact with your brand and share it with others through the use of the lense.
  • Lenses, stickers, and filters are completely customizable.
  • Branded effects and lenses can be live on TikTok for up to ten days, and users can still view the effects after the campaign is over.


  • It can be costly to create branded lenses and place them in the app.
  • Since so many filters and effects are available, there’s no guarantee that people will actually use the branded lens you create.
  • After ten days, users can’t create videos with the lenses.

How to Set Up TikTok Ads

Once you decide what TikTok ad format suits your social media marketing strategy best, you’ll either work with a TikTok account manager or set up in-feed advertisements with the TikTok Ads Manager.

First, you’ll want to make an account on the ads manager program and get your business approved by TikTok. Once approved, you can begin creating your campaign, tailor settings like your target audiences and advertising budget, and designing your in-feed ad.

Want to expand your social media advertising efforts? Hurrdat Marketing can help create and manage social media advertising campaigns on multiple platforms, including TikTok. Get started with our social media marketing services today!

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