There are over 1 billion monthly users on TikTok worldwide, making it one of the most used social media platforms in the modern day. Available in 39 languages, it has accounts in the United States, China, Mexico, Brazil, Russia, Pakistan, Turkey, and even Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines! With such a wide reach, it is a fantastic platform to use as a content creator and a great way to promote your online course.
TikTok’s majority user base falls between the ages of 16 and 24, with the audience growing in popularity among older users as well. And there is an endless supply of content available, including educational accounts! As an online course creator, you can take advantage of TikTok’s massive user base to promote your course to a wider audience. To take it even further, use TikTok ads and analytics to generate interest in your content and convert more potential students.
In this blog, we will explore how to leverage this social media platform, and how to use TikTok ads to promote your online course!
Step 1: Set Up a TikTok Business Account
If you haven’t created a TikTok account yet, this is the place to start. With a business account, you can create content and also access TikTok Ads Manager, where you can make and manage your ad campaigns. You can also view your ads analytics and gauge which ones are performing better than others based on conversion rates.
Step 2: Create Engaging Content
This is a no-brainer. In order to captivate your target audience, you need to have videos related to your online course on your TikTok page that users can watch and engage with. TikTok Ads are much more effective when interested users can find your videos on your online course and related topics, generating a call to action and convincing them to sign up.
Of course, this is where you determine who your target audience is. As an online course instructor, you should already have a pretty good idea of that! So just generate your TikTok material and ads to your target audience for your promotional strategy on TikTok.
Here are a few ideas on what kind of video shorts you can create to engage with your target audience and generate interest in signing up for your online course:
Online course topics
- Short educational videos – Get some fun facts going! You can address common misconceptions or myths related to topics in your course. Include interesting statistics or data related to your course content that will teach your users something new, and create that knowledge gap leaving them wanting more. This will generate curiosity in the viewer, and at the end of these videos, you can circle back to your online course with a “link in bio” to sign up. Use these short videos in your ads campaign, especially if they have a high engagement rate. That will bring more interested users to your course page!
- Videos promoting your course – Explain the structure of your course and the topics that will be covered. Anyone interested in your online course will be curious for more, and it will give them insight into what they are signing up for. Creating a video where you are talking directly to the user is the best way to captivate them, making you more personable as an instructor.
- Testimonials – Include reviews from former students. When users see endorsements from someone who has taken your course in the past and how it has helped them, they are more likely to look into your online course. It’s like the modern version of ratemyprofessor.com, where student testimonies help future students determine whether they want to take that class or not! If you have endorsements from industry experts about your online course, you should include this in your media content and your ads campaign as well.
Create a TikTok community
- Storytelling – Have some creative liberty with this one. You can talk about what made you interested in the topics that prompted you to create your online course, tell an anecdote about a student, or anything else that comes to mind! This is a great content piece that will have users stay for the video, click on your profile to watch part two, and follow you for more content. The more people that follow your content, the more those people are likely to sign up for your online course. Create an ad sequence that tells a story, which will give your ad campaign direction.
- Behind the Scenes – Adding to that personable touch, you can show how you create your online course and the thought process behind it. This content is valuable because it brings the users closer to you as an instructor, and is like a story on its own. Ask users for feedback on what kind of topics they would like to see. Not only is that useful information for you to continue generating your lesson plans, but it creates a sense of community between you and TikTok users. This connection will build trust, and increase conversions from users to students.
- User-generated content – Share user-generated content related to your course. You can add your expert feedback on the topic, answer any questions that users may have brought up, or clarify and extend upon the information in their videos. This establishes you as an authority in your field, and also increases your target audience by tagging that user in your video so their friends and followers see you! You can also collaborate with influencers with the same interests, and that will increase your content reach. It is a fantastic way to engage with interested accounts.
- Regular engagement – This is important to keep users hooked. Whether you host a Q&A, or a poll in your ads to outsource information from interested users, you want to continually gain traction through your content and your ads. While the idea of TikTok ads seems like it may be impersonal, make sure the content in the ads has that personal flair – so you’re talking to that viewer to reel them in. Instill a sense of urgency, like limited seating for your online course so you can give each student more attention, deadlines to sign up, and the emotional “FOMO” aspect (Fear Of Missing Out), that will elevate the call to action for more users to sign up.
Methods to promote your online course
- Simplicity in design – Your ads should have a clear message along with stimulating and eye-catching visuals. If you have certain colors associated with your course, use those throughout your content and your ads! This creates a brand for your online course, and makes you recognizable among other creators. The great thing about TikTok is it has a user-friendly editing platform that makes it easy to add text, audio, voiceover, and other effects to your videos. Your video format should be 9:16, this is the vertical video aspect optimized for viewing on a mobile device while scrolling TikTok.
- Discounts and giveaways – You can run a promotion on your online course in your ads. If you are looking for more students, create a discount code available to TikTok users to apply when signing up for your online course. Additionally, you can spark interest in competition, and have a giveaway related to your course – such as free access to that user to your course content or something of value that will give them the tools to succeed in your online course. An example of this might be to tag give of your friends, comment, use your course-specific tags, and a deadline for the giveaway announcement.
- Humor – TikTok is a wide library of different topics, but one thing is for sure – people love humor. If you make a personal and funny ad promoting your course, that makes you more memorable and shareable! The more people that share your content with their friends or users in your target audience, the more students you will gain.
Step 3: Run your Ads Campaign
- Set Your Ad Objective: When creating your TikTok ad campaign, you’ll need to set an objective. This will depend on the goals of your online course and stage of the sales funnel you want to target. Choose a range of objectives, such as website visits, conversions, and more.
- Create Your Ads: The key to a successful TikTok ad is an “ad creative” that resonates with your target audience. Make a variety of formats for your ads, such as video ads, image ads, or branded hashtag challenges. For this, customize some hashtags specific to your online course, so whenever a user adds that hashtag to their videos you will see it and collaborate with them for user-generated content.
For online courses, video ads are the most effective as they showcase the benefits of your course and connect with your audience. When creating your video ad, make sure to grab the viewers’ attention in the first few seconds, showcase the benefits of your course, and include a clear call to action.
- Set Your Targeting Options: Once you’ve made your ad creative, it’s time to set your targeting options. TikTok offers several metrics to customize your desired target audience, such as location, age, gender, and interests – to name a few. Take advantage of retargeting to show your ads to people who have already shown interest in your content and your online course.
- Set Your Budget and Schedule: When setting your TikTok ad campaign, consider your advertising goals, audience, and overall marketing budget. There is a range of bidding options, such as cost per click (CPC), cost per impression (CPM), and cost per action (CPA). You can also set a daily budget and schedule your ads to run at specific times of the day.
- Analyze Your Ad Performance: Once your campaign is up and running, keep track of your ad performance regularly to see what is working and what isn’t, so you can adjust to generate more interest. You can create multiple versions of an ad with the same call to action, and see which one performs the best. TikTok’s Ads Manager provides detailed metrics such as impressions, clicks, and conversions, which you can optimize in your ad targeting and creativity.
TikTok ads can be a powerful tool to promote your online course and reach a wider audience. By following these guidelines, you will create effective content and ad campaigns that resonate with your target students and drive conversions. Remember to test different ad formats and targeting options to see what works best for your online course. With a little creativity and persistence, TikTok Ads can be a game-changer for your online course business!