TikTok launched a new feature known as ‘Small Gestures’ that allows its users on the platform to send virtual gifts to others, completely free of cost. These virtual gifts will be offered from multiple brand partners on the TikTok app.
TikTok’s explanation on the same:
Though the ‘Free’ tag might entice you, these are fairly promotional, which comes with a limited period subscription, after which the user will need to purchase the subscription to continue using these services.
Some of the gifts that are available in the TikTok app via ‘Small Gesture’ features are:
- Adobe Premiere Rush subscription for 90 days.
- Subscription to DashPass for one month.
- Get a subscription to Pandora services for 90 days.
- Skillshare’s premium membership for two months.
These aren’t actually complete product subscriptions, since they come in a limited trial offers, after which the user can either cancel the subscription or buy them for continuation. Though this looks like a great strategy for businesses to get more people into their userbase. But there should be no area for complaints since all of them are ‘free’ to use with a freemium offering.
If you want to send a gift using the Small Gesture feature, start by searching ‘Small Gestures’ on the Discover page of the TikTok app. Tap on the purple banner to access the program. Click on the ‘Send Gift’ option on the popup and you’ll get to see multiple offers from different brands. Choose the offer you want to send to other users, and proceed to send it via a message.
While this program aims to offers “together while apart” reminders to your loved ones, it clearly looks like a shift towards the eCommerce part of the market for TikTok. Since it’s difficult for TikTok to monetize their videos using interrupting ads due to their short length, using alternate promotional methods is the only option they have to generate more revenue.
For the Chinese version of TikTok, known as ‘Douyin’, using eCommerce integration for monetizing their platform has been really successful compared to its counterpart, TikTok. Brands and promoters can include an eCommerce link directly into Douyin videos. These links will show up as a popup banner once the playback finishes. Once the user clicks on the link, they’ll be taken to the product introduction page within the app, with a link to buy the product.
Douyin has been successful with this model for the last year, generating over twice the revenue that TikTok brought in. Since TikTok recently was testing out their own eCommerce tools, it looks like they are trying to achieve the same as well. This should help them open more options for creators to generate extra revenue on the platform. TikTok has also launched its influencer marketplace recently to promote the same element.