TikTok introduces initiative to support SMBs in Southeast Asia

Photo by cottonbro

This past year has been especially challenging for SMBs in the region, with International Data Corporation (IDC) reporting 70.6 percent of micro and SMBs forced to temporarily cease operations due to the pandemic. 

In response, TikTok has introduced Shop Local Saturday, an initiative to support small and medium businesses (SMBs) in Southeast Asia throughout the month of June. 

As part of Shop Local Saturday, SMBs in Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam may opt in to the initiative through a variety of paid advertising packages to showcase their brand through a unique suite of in-app spotlight features on TikTok, which will roll out starting June 4.

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With many SMBs still managing the impact of the pandemic, this initiative also seeks to level the playing field by raising awareness about their businesses and amplifying their offerings. 

Access to elevated perks for both SMBs and TikTok users

By joining Shop Local Saturday, SMBs can leverage the platform’s scale and reach, using a dedicated in-app page to drive traffic to the various SMBs’ sites. They will also have exclusive access to creators, produced ads, creative workshops and listings on TikTok’s website and blog, receiving next-level brand exposure to drive conversions of more users into new customers.

Beyond the benefits to local SMBs, local TikTok users in Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam can also look forward to attractive deals, including providing promotion codes within the app for customers, available on TikTok all across June as they do their part to support their local businesses.

“Small and medium businesses form the backbone of every local economy,” said Esme Lean, TikTok’s Head of Small and Medium Business in Southeast Asia. “Shop Local Saturday is an initiative to empower more SMBs to use TikTok as a platform to find their authentic voice and reach new audiences. This is our way of supporting SMBs and enabling them to grow in spite of the pandemic.

“We hope to show SMBs in Southeast Asia that they can leverage TikTok to launch meaningful campaigns that will ultimately drive sales and real business results,” 

According to TikTok SMB Report conducted in January 2021 by TikTok for Business, 1 in every 4 SMBs in Thailand as well as 1 in every 3 Vietnamese and Indonesian SMBs that have used TikTok rank it as their preferred ad platform and find TikTok ads to be most effective, highlighting the strength of the platform as a marketing tool to drive their business goals.

These findings highlight TikTok’s key role and demonstrable success in driving business growth for SMBs. Kraisorn Makdee, founder of BM Collagen, shared: “TikTok allowed us to reach many people in a creative manner. More than that, it helped boost business flows, drive engagement rates and, most importantly, helped sales in a concrete manner. I would say that our switch to TikTok has been a thoughtful, innovative and important investment.”

In addition to the various benefits brought to SMBs by Shop Local Saturdays, TikTok will also amplify the initiative further on the platform through In-Feed Ads as well as attention-grabbing full-screen displays known as Brand Takeovers, to direct users to the Shop Local Saturday listings throughout June.