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Make 2021 your best financial year yet!

'This is different': New lockdown trend could save business

Anastasia Santoreneos
·4-min read
TikTok general manager Brett Armstrong reveals what businesses need to do to adapt to a new normal. Source: Getty
TikTok general manager Brett Armstrong reveals what businesses need to do to adapt to a new normal. Source: Getty

Brett Armstrong will be speaking at Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit on 17 September about building the businesses of the future. Register here for your tickets.

TikTok has amassed more than 1.6 million Australian users, and has been downloaded two billion times worldwide - a huge feat for a business just two years old.

And its popularity surged during lockdown, general manager of TikTok Australia, Brett Armstrong, told Yahoo Finance.

“If you look at TikTok, it’s just pure positivity,” he said.

“We had this situation where, let’s be honest, everyone’s world changed. A younger demographic was really using the platform, but once everyone started to be in the same or room, it just spread.”

And it hasn’t just spread from a consumer level - brands are beginning to see the value in ditching traditional ads for TikToks. In fact, some of them may find their customers are already doing the work for them.

“This is a different media,” Armstrong said. “I spoke to one brand last week, and they weren’t on the platform yet, but I was able to show them some of the videos that their customers had already put on the platform.”

While traditional marketing might see you present your product to a customer, TikTok introduces a two-way conversation.

“It’s an authentic platform. It’s real, it’s fun, it’s creative, but authenticity is what makes it different.

“The Australians and New Zealanders on the platform are coming back to that brand saying, ‘Here's what I want to tell you, this is how I use your product, this is why I love your product, this is why it makes me happy’.

“So for the first time, a brand is having this two-way conversation, and that's a really new dynamic in marketing.”

How to survive the pandemic

With businesses forced to pivot their models as a result of strict lockdown measures, the shift from in-person to online has been fast-tracked.

But just because businesses don’t have the ability to create face-to-face customer experiences, it doesn’t mean all hope is lost.

In fact, there are three key qualities Armstrong says businesses need to have to survive the pandemic, and come out stronger.

Stay on trend

The first key to adapting to a new normal is to be aware that the situation has fundamentally changed, Armstrong said.

“If you are put the same messages out in the same way, it's probably not going to resonate,” he said.

Earlier this month KFC needed to rethink its iconic ‘It’s finger lickin’ good’ slogan amidst the pandemic, changing it to ‘It’s...good’ to reflect the times.

"We find ourselves in a unique situation - having an iconic slogan that doesn't quite fit in the current environment," Catherine Tan-Gillespie, global chief marketing officer at KFC, said at the time.

Build your community

With businesses unable to interact to the public or connect with customers in the same way, it’s more important than ever to build an online community.

“That’s what you know we see with the likes of Menu Log, getting people to do the delivery dance and get involved in the brand’s message - you're building that community.”

Be brave

“Don’t sit back,” Armstrong said.

“You’ve got to get in there and start having that dialogue with your consumers.” You might even find your consumers are engaging in a dialogue with your business already.

Brett Armstrong will be speaking at Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit on 17 September about building the businesses of the future. Register here for your tickets.

Yahoo Finance's All Markets Summit is back! Don't miss out. Book your ticket for 17 Septemeber. Source: Supplied
Yahoo Finance's All Markets Summit is back! Don't miss out. Book your ticket for 17 Septemeber. Source: Supplied

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