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How I research ad ideas on TikTok for app marketing
I share my secrets on researching ad ideas on TikTok
New ad concept production takes time. In this article, I will talk about exactly how to make the best of your time to maximize impact. That includes:
3 approaches to creative concept creation
Why thinking like an artist is the way to go
And how I utilize tools for research
3 Approaches to creative concept evaluation
There are two types of approaches I observe when it comes to ad production:
number 1- usually, a freelancer: “Look at this random app that started making money, and here are the random ads I collected through their ads library. Please get inspired.”
number 2- usually, an agency: “Here is an endless list of customer emotions and motivations chart. We will pick 5 combinations among 12.000.000 possibilities and create something that (hopefully) works.”
These approaches are distinctly different, but they have one thing in common.
This is not how an artist (with performance in mind) would approach creativity.
Why think like an artist
Look, artists know they must work on something mass appealing, especially if they want to be appreciated alive, survive and thrive with their art. And they usually base their creative work on something already popular (see the topic “interpolation in music” on YouTube).
Let me put this logic in app terms.
Imagine you are creating a match-3 game. Would you get inspired by a random match-3 game or Candy Crush?
The same applies to ad creative concepts. Artists base their creations on previous successes (but provide their twist on them).
That brings us to the 3rd approach: Researching and building from what works for competitors is the most crucial step of creativity in ad production, instead of blindly producing what you think might work.
Utilize tools for your next big video ad concept
To do the research well, you need to look at the right places. Here is my set of tools:
1- TikTok.com (literally, the good old TikTok website)
Type the most apparent keywords about your app. Let’s say I do this research for one of my clients - climony , the climate coach app.
When you type those “obvious” keywords, you will not only start getting results for your search but also the closest suggestions. I will hit enter.
The search results will reveal the top videos for your keyword:
You will be shown the most popular videos first. These are the ones you should learn from. (Keep in mind: These results are organic videos, not ads)
Number 2- TikTok Top Ads Library
Research competitor ads with keywords:
Make sure your keyword and country are set. Then select the “Top 1-5% liked”, extend the timespan to 180 days, and rank by reach.
Bonus: Once you click on an ad, you can even see how people interact with it:
With these insights, you can precisely see where people drop off and where people click the link on the ad—further insight into what works.
Next stop: Head to Pipi Ads to dig deeper into competitor ads.
Filters are more advanced in Pipi. I can spot ads I cannot spot in the TikTok Top Ads Library. It could be an overkill for many people, so I leave this optional.
Another source I use is an ad intelligence tailored explicitly for apps. My choice is AppMagic, which doesn’t give TikTok ad intelligence, but in general, checking which videos work for competitors helps a lot.
The last piece of information is, of course, your data. For that, you can either use your own TikTok dashboard or use something that makes it a little easier to interact with, such as Motion (Creative Analytics):
With these tools, you can see patterns in what works for an audience in your industry.
This is how I build a solid start for a new round of ads. And I know they have the highest probability of serving me a success because they worked well before.
At the end of this research, the next best step is to evaluate ideas based on effort. And start working on the most straightforward idea.
Here is an example of our journey with my climony, the climate coach app:
The script goes, “Do you want to make our world a better place? Download climony and don’t look away anymore, be a part of the change and save the climate.”
💪 You have the power to help me reach new audiences, so please like, share, and save.