The Ultimate Guide to Running Successful TikTok Ads in 2023
TikTok Ads

The Ultimate Guide to Running Successful TikTok Ads in 2023



TikTok ads have emerged as a significant game-changer in a world where attention spans are dwindling rapidly. This popular platform has empowered countless businesses, organizations, and individuals to connect with their target audiences effectively.

Now, you might be wondering, “How can I harness TikTok Ads to achieve my business or personal goals?” Well, that’s precisely what you’re about to discover today. In this comprehensive guide, you will gain insights into TikTok ads, how to set them up, and invaluable tips for running successful TikTok ad campaigns.

What are TikTok Ads?

TikTok ads represent the advertising program offered by TikTok, a short-form video platform where users explore, create, and share videos typically ranging from 15 to 60 seconds in duration. Through TikTok ads, the platform amplifies the reach of your content, whether it’s services, products, tools, software, or any offering you wish to promote to their vast user base.

What are TikTok Ads?Source

TikTok ads are organized into three levels. These are the following:

  • TikTok Ad: This term refers to a single ad, typically in video format.
  • TikTok Ad Group: This level is where you organize TikTok Ads into groups.
  • TikTok Campaign: At this level, you organize TikTok Ad Groups.

These levels help you structure and manage your TikTok ad campaigns effectively.

What are the Different Types of TikTok Ads?

To gain a comprehensive understanding of how TikTok ads operate, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the various types of TikTok ads available. Let’s explore these ad types to help you make informed choices:

1. TikTok Video Ads

TikTok Video Adssource

If you’ve spent some time on TikTok, you’ve likely encountered TikTok video ads, as they are the most prevalent ad format on the platform. These ads appear similar to regular TikTok videos. However, when users click on them, they are directed to a landing page or, in the case of app promotion, prompted to install the advertised app.

2. Spark Ads

Spark AdsSource

Spark Ads represent a native ad format that utilizes standard TikTok posts for advertising purposes. The key distinction between regular TikTok posts and TikTok posts with Spark Ads is that Spark Ads boost the visibility of a TikTok post, garnering more views, shares, likes, follows, and comments. All engagement generated by a Spark Ad is credited to your organic posts.

3. TikTok Image Ads

TikTok image ads consist of static images that do not have any motion. Unlike videos, these ads serve as visual representations of your brand, app name, or ad text. It’s important to note that this ad type may not be available in all countries, so check your dashboard for availability.

4. Playable Ads

Playable ads function as mini-games, offering an interactive and engaging experience for users. They are user-friendly and highly effective at capturing user attention and interaction.

5. Shopping Ads

Shopping AdsSource

Shopping Ads are a relatively recent addition to TikTok’s ad offerings. If you can remember, TikTok offers the Dynamic Showcase Ads” and “Collection Ads.” TikTok removed these options and moved them under “Shopping Ads.”

TikTok showcases carousel ads specifically within BuzzVideo. This ad format allows you to include up to 10 images in a single carousel ad, providing a visually engaging way to present your content or products.

7. Pangle Ads

TikTok extends its reach through an audience network known as Pangle Ads. By utilizing Pangle ads, you can extend your advertising reach to TikTok’s audience network, expanding the visibility of your ads.

You can explore these TikTok ad types. Each of them offers unique advantages and, of course, disadvantages. Thus, you should choose the most suitable ad format for you that should convey your message and achieve your goals on the platform.

Why Should You Use TikTok Ads?

Launched in September 2016, TikTok rapidly emerged as a social media powerhouse, capitalizing on the surging trend of short-form video consumption. There are several compelling reasons why you should consider delving into TikTok ads, and you may find it pleasantly surprising how they can amplify your business. Here are some compelling arguments in favor of TikTok Ads:

Here are some of the best reasons you should use TikTok Ads:

1. Massive Number of Users

TikTok boasts a staggering 1.65 billion users, including approximately 1.1 billion monthly users in 2023. Moreover, TikTok users collectively view over a billion videos daily. The platform’s presence extends across more than 150 countries, ranking it among the most frequently downloaded apps on both the App Store and Play Store.

With such a vast user base, TikTok presents an immense opportunity to connect with both existing and potential customers.

2. A Broad Range of Audience

While TikTok initially gained prominence among Gen Z, individuals born in the 1990s and 2000s, its audience has since diversified.

Recent data from Statista reveals that 17.8% of TikTok users fall within the 18-24 age bracket, 31% are aged 24-34, and 13.1% are aged 35-44. This broad demographic range ensures that you can likely find your target audience on TikTok, regardless of age group.

3. Precise Audience Targeting

With TikTok, you need not cast your net blindly into a sea of billions. The platform offers precise audience targeting options based on factors such as gender, age, location, and interests. Leveraging TikTok’s algorithm, you can ensure that your message reaches the right people at the right time, enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of your advertising efforts.

Audience TargetingSource

4. Insightful Analytics

TikTok equips you with the essential data and tools necessary for creating, fine-tuning, and monitoring your ads. Through TikTok’s analytics, you gain the ability to evaluate the performance of your ad campaigns comprehensively.

5. Tiktok’s Marketing Impact

Simply put, you should consider TikTok ads because the data speaks for itself, demonstrating their capacity to yield favorable outcomes. Consider the following statistics from the Marketing Science Custom Holiday Survey:

  • An impressive 84% of TikTok users plan to use online platforms for their shopping needs.
  • An astounding 39% of users have discovered products on TikTok that were previously unknown to them.
  • TikTok boasts an 88% user satisfaction rate with the platform’s functionality.

TikTok Marketing Impact


Furthermore, TikTok proudly claims its global dominance in ad equity, positioning itself as the number one choice. Surveyed TikTok users are 1.5 times more inclined to make purchases based on products they discovered on the platform. Notably, 68% of TikTok users perceive the ads they encounter as distinct and distinctive compared to those on other platforms.

These statistics underscore the effectiveness and uniqueness of TikTok as an advertising platform, making it a compelling choice for marketers seeking tangible results and a distinct brand presence.

TikTok Ads Manager Overview

The TikTok Ads Manager is your one-stop control center where you can create, manage, and evaluate your TikTok advertising campaigns. So, getting familiar with the TikTok Ads Manager page is important if you want to be successful in running your ads.

TikTok Ads Manager

Here’s a quick overview of the dashboard.


Within the dashboard, you will access a snapshot of your TikTok ad data and be equipped to monitor shifts in performance. It provides information pertaining to live campaigns, expenditure on ad budgets, ad performance for a specific period of time, and more.


As its name suggests, you’ll find all your campaigns here, which include your TikTok ads, ad groups, and campaigns.  It offers seamless management of your existing ads and facilitates the creation of new ones with ease.


The Library section of the TikTok Ads Manager serves as the repository for your ad assets. This is where you can create and manage your ad content, audiences, creatives, pixels, visual assets, and others.


You can create custom ad reports in the Reporting segment of the TikTok Ads Manager. If you want to instantly get started, choose any of the pre-defined templates made available in the reporting section. You also have the option to generate reports manually or let TikTok generate them according to your set schedule.

How to Create a TikTok Ad Campaign

Creating a TikTok ad may initially appear complex, but with a bit of practice, it’s as easy as a walk in the park. All your activities happen in the TikTok Ads Manager dashboard.

Before getting started, be sure that you already have a TikTok for Business account, which is different from your personal TikTok account. You can sign up here if you haven’t set up a business account yet. Once that’s done, you can proceed and follow these steps:

Create a New TikTok Ad

1. Go to the TikTok Ads Manager dashboard.

2. Click the Campaign button.

3. Click on Create. If it is your first time creating a TikTok ad, you would need to decide whether you want to use the Simplified Mode or the Custom Mode. The former allows you to create an ad in less than 5 minutes. However, if you want to have more control and get as specific as possible with your ads, choose Custom Mode.

4. Choose a campaign objective. There are three options to choose from: Awareness (if you want to increase your brand’s visibility), Consideration (if you want to engage your users), and Conversion (if you want to improve conversion). To effectively track and measure your ad’s success, you need to install TikTok Pixel.

Create TikTok AdsSource

5. Go through the Settings. In this step, you need to name your campaign and specify special ad categories. You can turn on campaign budget optimization and set campaign budget on the same step.



Create a TikTok Ad Group

6. Create an Ad Group. If you have multiple ads, you should organize them under the TikTok Ad Group. Go to Ad Group settings and give your ad group a name.

7. Configure Placements. In this advanced setting, you can turn on or off “User comment,” “Video download,” and “Video sharing.”

8. Determine your Ad Group’s targeting, which includes Demographics (location, gender, age, and languages), Audience type, interests and behavior, and device.

9. Set Content Exclusions. The default setting is “Standard.” However, you can click edit to choose “Full Inventory,” “Standard Inventory,” or “Limited Inventory.” TikTok will explain all these on the same page.


10. Set your Ad Group budget. There’s a minimum daily budget, which is $20. Your set budget would determine the maximum amount of money you can spend on ads each day. 

11. Set your Ad Group schedule. You can specify which day of the week and what time of the day your ads would run.

12. Set your Bidding & Optimization. In this step, you need to set your optimization goal, bid control, billing event, and delivery type (Standard or Accelerated). Again, TikTok will explain each of these options as you go through them.


Submit Your TikTok Ad

13. Submit your TikTok ad. Once you’re done with all the configuration, you should then upload your ad content, write a caption, and choose a display name or TikTok Brand name.

14. Specify your destination page. When people click on your ad, where should they be redirected? You can choose “Website” or “TikTok Instant Page.” If Website, enter your URL. You can also choose between “Dynamic” or “Standard” as your call to action.

TikTok WebsiteSource

15. Set your tracking. This is optional but if you want to track events on your app, website, or third-party sites, then you should go ahead and set this thing up.

16. Hit the Submit button. TikTok would then review your ad, which typically lasts up to 24 hours.

What are the Best Practices in Running TikTok Ads?

TikTok ads can only be effective if you make them effective. Results don’t always become favorable and you might be wasting your money if you don’t know what you are doing. That’s why, it is important to keep in mind the following best practices and guides for running TikTok ads:

Know Your Audience

The better you understand your audience, the greater your chances of creating ads that truly resonate with them. Therefore, conduct thorough audience research. Familiarize yourself with their interests, behaviors, demographics, pain points, and preferences. These insights can later be invaluable for precise targeting.

Grab the User’s Attention Immediately

Perhaps, this is the most important advice you’ll get, which is to grab people’s attention as soon as possible. As you know, people’s attention gets shorter and shorter. That’s why, you should start your TikTok video ads with an interesting and powerful introduction within 3 seconds. That might be too short but once you hook users in, they should watch your whole video up to the last second.

Follow TikTok Ad Specs

To make your ads visually impressive, adhere to TikTok’s ad specifications diligently. Failure to do so may result in distorted visuals or parts of your ads not displaying correctly. Here are some guides from TikTok to help you know their ad specifications:

Improve Your Ads Often

There are a lot of things to learn when it comes to running TikTok ads. You probably won’t get it right the first time. It’s a learning experience. That’s why you need to test your ads regularly. See if they are working or not.

Moreover, you should have different ad formats and variations so that you cover a lot of bases. TikTok also suggests that you change your ads every 7 days to prevent ad fatigue on the users, which causes them to simply ignore your ads because they have already seen them.

Be Creative

Creativity is the lifeblood of TikTok. Many TikTok videos have set trends due to their creativity. Given the diverse range of content on TikTok, which has attracted millions of users, it’s essential to think outside the box when engaging your audience. To get your creative juices flowing, consider the following tips:

  • Craft a compelling story
  • Inject humor into your ads
  • Showcase your brand’s personality
  • Collaborate with influencers
  • Select the perfect music
  • Utilize visual effects and filters
  • Draw inspiration from current trends and challenges
  • Share how-to videos
  • Incorporate testimonials and reviews

Don’t hesitate to stand out but in a positive and unique way. Embrace your distinctive style and observe how your audience engages with it.

Put Your Most Important Message in the Middle of the Screen

TikTok videos occupy the entire screen, and multiple elements are often superimposed onto them, including the account name, sound, video caption, and action buttons (follow, share, like, save).

With this in mind, position your most critical message or element in the center of the screen. This ensures visibility, regardless of the user’s screen size or any additional TikTok elements.

Localize Your Ads

To create ads that resonate deeply with your target audience, consider localization. Audiences tend to connect more strongly with ads they can easily recognize, understand, and relate to.

For example, you can adapt the language of your ads to the local dialect of your target audience. Additionally, infuse elements into your ads that reflect your audience’s unique culture, social norms, events, and landmarks.

Visit the TikTok Business Help Center

TikTok provides a wealth of helpful resources on their website, including a robust library of articles, guides, and tips. These valuable resources can enhance your understanding of running effective TikTok ads, helping you optimize your advertising campaigns for success.

Run your TikTok Ads with Confidence

TikTok ads possess the remarkable ability to connect with a diverse and engaged audience, potentially transforming them into enthusiastic customers interested in your products or services. By mastering the art of creating and running TikTok ads, you significantly enhance your odds of reaching the ideal audience and cultivating lasting brand loyalty.

If you’re eager to delve deeper into the world of TikTok advertising, ShyftUp can help you. They have the right experience, expertise, and tools to get you started. They also specialize in helping mobile app developers and owners to dominate their niche.

Take that one bold step today and explore the endless possibilities if TikTok advertising with ShyftUp. Give them a try today!

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