TikTok: 4 Ways to Grow your TikTok Shop Sales with Caitlin Cotter, Unsociable (episode 178)

by April Buencamino-dy

Caitlin Cotter is one of the team at Unsociable – and they are … “chronically online so you don’t have to be”. They’re a Premier TikTok Shop partner agency and have driven over 500,000 followers, and over 54 million views for the brands they work with, as well as an awful lot of sales.

Caitlin Cotter Unsociable TikTok

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Dive in:

[05:06] Why getting followers on TikTok can be challenging.
[08:59] Posting 5 times a day… now once.
[12:43] Creators can request samples and earn commissions.
[14:03] TikTok’s algorithm matters more than followers.
[18:27] Testing 2-hour live breaks creates suspense.
[21:20] TikTok ads deliver crazy ROAS..
[23:09] Ads and tips on TikTok.
[29:17] Live streams drive sales and require moderator presence.
[29:55] Delegate admin, build data for better ads.

Caitlin’s TikTok Journey

Caitlin’s background is in social media, mainly on Instagram and Facebook within the hospitality industry. She transitioned to working with TikTok through Unsociable.

For Caitlin, TikTok is a unique and exciting platform. She highlights the learning curve and the ability to shape the rulebook as it’s still in its early stages.

1. Set Up Your Organic Brand Profile

The first step on TikTok is to build and maintain a strong organic brand profile on TikTok. This is vital for gaining credibility and trust among potential customers.

People often check a brand’s profile to ensure it’s legitimate before buying. A good organic brand profile should showcase products through user-generated content that appears natural and not overly sales-oriented.

Daily posts are initially helpful to gain followers and establish credibility. Over time, the posting frequency can be reduced to prevent appearing spammy.

2. Build Your Creator Network

The second step is to collaborate with creators or affiliates to drive sales. Similar to influencer marketing, this can be effective. In choosing the right partners, focus on their sales performance rather than follower count.

Caitlin suggests trying out multiple creators and monitoring their sales performance. Be selective in forming long-term relationships with those who drive results.

3. Do Livestreams – they’re free!

The third step is livestreaming. It’s an excellent way to promote products and build your community.

There is no fixed duration for livestreams, and it’s essential to experiment with different time lengths. Both agencies and clients can do livestreams, and it’s not as intimidating as it may seem, with shorter sessions being effective.

Loyal viewers engage and discuss products on livestreams. This makes it a valuable tool to drive sales and build a community on TikTok.

4. TikTok Ads and Your ROAS

Caitlin’s fourth strategy involves TikTok ads. TikTok ads offer an impressive ROAS, making it one of the best online platforms for advertising.

However, she suggests starting with organic content, creators, and livestreams to become familiar with the platform. This will also allow you to know which products and messages work, and handle operations efficiently before investing in ads.

Additionally, building a follower base on TikTok through the first three steps provides a valuable baseline for ad targeting.

Insider Tips

If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with TikTok – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?

The key to success on TikTok is authenticity. Stay true to your brand and be genuine in your content, as TikTok users can easily spot inauthenticity. It’s essential to engage with your audience honestly.

Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve TikTok performance?

To improve TikTok performance, you should experiment and embrace trial and error. Whether it’s optimising product descriptions or content frequency, find what works best for your brand through testing.

If someone listening wants to learn more about TikTok is there one cheap/free resource you’d recommend?

Caitlin recommends using TikTok Academy, which offers courses to learn more about TikTok. Completing courses can earn you rewards such as coupons and vouchers you can give to your customers. This makes it a valuable resource for brands looking to leverage the platform’s offerings.

Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in TikTok?

TikTok is launching a secondary ad-free app for a monthly fee, but it won’t eliminate shop-related content from creators. This development is an interesting move, and brands should prepare for its impact on TikTok Shop marketing.

Interview Links

Caitlin on Social media:

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