TikTok isn’t just the most prominentOpens a new window social media platform of the moment, it’s also a thoroughly established method of communication and engagement for people around the world. Allison Ferenci, CEO of Camera IQ, looks at how TikTok’s AR could help brands connect with consumers in the metaverse.
While many social media experiences of the past got their start prioritizing text and images, TikTok is an explicitly video-focused platform and always has been. Thanks to that video-first ethos, TikTok has become a vibrant home for augmented reality experiences and is actively (perhaps intentionallyOpens a new window ) introducing consumers to the concept of the metaverse.
Knock, Knock, Knocking on the Metaverse’s Door
Many consumers are still confused about what the metaverse is and why they should care. However, those who congregate on TikTok have already welcomed the platform’s augmented reality experiences with open arms. Without knowing it, consumers are warming up to the metaverse through the very aspects of TikTok that make it so engagingOpens a new window . The simplest AR effects familiarize consumers with the core concept of the metaverse: an experience in extra-reality.
In that sense, augmented reality builds a bridge to the metaverse, over the gulf in understanding that threatens to leave consumers behind. While using TikTok, consumers are already beginning to define what the metaverse is and what it looks, feels, and sounds like. By engaging with the platform by either consuming or creating content, those TikTok users exercise agency and shape their experience in the ways they most appreciate and enjoy. The brands that join in on the fun are taking an active, participatory role not just in introducing the masses to the metaverse but also in defining what they’ll find when they get there.
3 Ways Brands Can Use TikTok to Build a Bridge to the Metaverse
Augmented reality provides an easy-to-grasp taste of what it’s like to add a layer of malleability to reality. Although AR is like metaverse lite for brandsOpens a new window , it can also serve as the conduit to a more fully realized brand experience that lives entirely in the metaverse. Here are three ways companies can use TikTok’s AR experiences to introduce consumers to everything the metaverse has to offer.
1.Creating a culture
Unlike other social media platforms, where flattery is often conflated with theft, TikTok is home to a vibrant creator community that has made an art out of copying each other. When one video strikes a chord, it immediately spawns countless riffs, interpretations, and reinventions. That’s how TikTok dance trends go viral so quickly, for example. The platform is designed to put everyone in the same sandbox.
Because they are thrown in that same proverbial sandbox with users, brands have an incredible opportunity to create content that goes viral. To achieve that kind of success, though, companies need to pick up the same tools as the consumer-creators they’re courting. In so many ways, TikTok is about driving culture, as opposed to observing and commenting on it as it passes by. By keeping an ear to the ground, brands can bring authenticity to augmented reality experiences that inspire creators to riff on trends that are flourishing organically on the platform.
2. Facilitating collaboration
Because TikTok users are encouraged to copy each other and put their spin on things, the platform inspires endless chains of creation. The unbridled creative energyOpens a new window unfolding on TikTok is virtually limitless, but it’s important to understand that, for the most part, it is not driven by profit. The spirit of co-creation that unfolds on TikTok is practically a native feature of the platform.
Catching that wave of TikTok creativity can lead to an ocean of exposure. Understanding TikTok as home for anyone with the urge to create and collaborateOpens a new window will help brands treat users with respect and value their unique skills and talents. Designing augmented reality experiences isn’t just about capturing consumers’ attention, it’s also about igniting their creative instincts. If brands can join in on the collaborative spirit that way, every TikTok user suddenly becomes a brand evangelist.
3. Driving commerce
By giving consumers the ability to visualize products in their livesOpens a new window , AR has proven itself an influential ecommerce sales toolOpens a new window . Whether helping someone imagine a piece of furniture in the home or allowing them to try on a new shade of lipstick, AR provides consumers with the immediate pleasure of a fun tech experience and real practical benefits that guide their purchase decisions.
Furthermore, according to a recent Camera IQ surveyOpens a new window , 60% of consumers want to learn more about brands, and 57% of consumers want to be entertained by brands. This indicates that the public hasn’t just accepted brand interactions as the norm â€“ they expect and even crave them. For brands to take off on TikTok, satisfying that craving means creating AR effects that allow consumers to experience their products in engaging, people-centric ways. An overwhelming 80% of viral AR effects on TikTok are focused on peopleOpens a new window , while only 20% are focused on objects. With that statistic in mind, brands should use AR to demonstrate how their products fit into creators’ lives while still keeping the focus on real individuals.
Consumer Focus Beyond Reality
TikTok creators may not know they’re interacting with the mechanics of the metaverse, but they take great pride in their videos and AR content. If your brand video punches through just enough, the community will do the rest of the work for you, but to do that, you have to be speaking their language. That’s how brands can educate, inspire, and bring consumers along for the ride to the metaverse.
How are you planning on connecting with customers in the metaverse? Tell us all about it on FacebookOpens a new window , TwitterOpens a new window , and LinkedInOpens a new window . We’d love to know!