TikTok for Lead Generation? It’s Different

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tiktokToday, TikTok is no longer just a platform for dance challenges, but a marketing tool rivaling social media giants like LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook. But does it hold the same weight for this industry looking to attract clients?

“You have to have fun with it and tell [your target customer] the truth about how we work and what we can do for them, no exceptions, and they will understand and trust you,” said Sonia Alvelo, CEO at Latin Financial. “Get creative and have fun with it at the same time. This is a different beast.”

Alvelo signed her company up on TikTok this past year and said, “It’s attracting good business.” Managing the account herself, their content is educational while also highlighting the environment and work ethic of the company. Their TikToks feature playful moments like office lunch breaks turned into music videos, fun clips showcasing employee food preferences, and footage from panels Alvelo has participated in. And she makes sure to have some content available in both English and her native Spanish.

“It is more educational content, that way it will attract new clients and give us the advantage of teaching them about the industry,” said Alvelo. “We also highlight our work ethic, how we treat our employees and the environment in which we work at Latin Financial.”

Initially skeptical, Alvelo learned that many small businesses on TikTok are seeking funding but hesitate to approach traditional banks. She’s studied where those businesses are online and the potential opportunity to connect with them where they are, including LinkedIn, which she actually found less conducive to this type of dealmaking despite its business atmosphere. She gives a thumbs-up to Facebook, explaining that its personalized environment allows those potential customers to really see you and feel like they know you.

“…You can make a lot of money advertising your company and what you do,” she said of Facebook.

“Instagram is good but it’s a networking platform and if you invest the right way you get a lot of leads and turn that into funded deals,” said Alvelo. “TikTok is the new approach to get all the new businesses less than two years old. And why not? Maybe to others it’s not the way to go, but for me and Latin Financial we are here to educate and for businesses to have all the knowledge to continue to be in business for a long time.”

Meanwhile, Alex Cespedes, Business Development Specialist at Financial Lynx, mentioned that their active engagement on TikTok only started in March despite being on the app for a year. They showcase a range of content, from funding successes, to visiting offices, to their sponsorships of different events. Still trying to figure out how to maximize the effectiveness of it all, Cespedes stated that LinkedIn and Instagram have been their bread and butter so far. The content they create on Instagram later gets reposted on TikTok and he’s found that it’s been hit-or-miss.

“…TikTok has been a little lesson but I think it’s because no one’s kind of figured it out yet,” said Cespedes. “Even on Instagram I see other brokers and other financing companies that do well and their stuff gets views and you see engagement on their posts, but then even when you go over to their TikTok, if they have one at all, it’s much less.”

The reigning demographic for users on TikTok is ages 18-24, whereas their business owner clientele is predominantly in their 40s-50s. Cespedes explained that Instagram resonates more with their target demographic for now.

“…I think that’s what it is now, it’s just a little bit of a lack of alignment, the TikTok age range is still a little too young for our industry, at least not right in the center of it.”

Last modified: September 28, 2023
Anaya VanceAnaya Vance is a reporter for deBanked. Connect with me on LinkedIn.

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