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How TikTok Is Championing Small Beauty Businesses

Published August 8, 2023
Published August 8, 2023

TikTok’s ability to amplify business sales has been widely discussed and utilized across the beauty industry, leading to an increase in sales for several brands' as well as products selling out. As stated by TikTok, customers shopping for beauty products on the app has a 23% higher spend than those shopping from traditional outlets including in-store and brand websites. These customers are 1.8x more likely to recommend products to friends and family that they have purchased through the social platform. In this evolving digital age, 89% of consumers attribute their beauty purchasing decisions to a “TikTok made me buy it” phenomenon; the idea that because it was shown on TikTok, it must be worth the money, and if several people are trying it out, why shouldn’t everyone? Recognizing the marketing power of its platform, TikTok launched its debut Small-Medium Business Beauty & Care Week, created to promote lesser-known brands to “likeminded beauty and personal care enthusiasts who have built a thriving digital neighborhood to inspire self-expression and confidence.”

Small-Medium Beauty & Care Week took place from July 31 to August 4, 2023, and highlighted specific products from selected brands. These included Kinfield, a skincare and insect repellent brand which previously took part in SharkTank; Grande Cosmetics which offers serum-based hair-growth products; makeup artist Patrick Ta’s namesake brand; and all-things-tan business b.tan. The brands and their products were promoted in videos created by popular beauty TikToker Christine Abraham, who hosts an impressive 954.1K followers and has over 39.2MM likes. Abraham worked alongside TikTok to position the selected products as “summer essentials,” and created a series of casual and engaging videos to promote the SKUs. These included “get ready with me for a date” and “hot girls don’t get sunburns or mosquito bites” videos, which showcased self-tan from b.tan, Kinfield Sunglow SPF 30 and Golden Hour insect repellent, Grande Cosmetics Grande Lash and Eyebrow serums, and Patrick Ta’s Major Skin Crème Foundation. In the first three days of posting, the videos received a combined 118K views as well as several consumer comments, confirming they had or were planning to purchase the products as a result.

“With #beauty reaching over 16B hashtag views and 3MM posts in the last year, the #BeautyTok community shares product hacks and tips, favorite routines, industry knowledge, and storytelling that compels a captivated audience ready to try new products and become brand advocates. TikTok For Business is excited to announce the first ever Small-Medium Business Beauty & Care Week—featuring the must-have products you need for all your 2023 summer plans. The #BeautyTok community never ceases to surprise and delight with unique storytelling content themes that are ripe for brands to engage with. There are limitless content themes for your beauty and care brand to tap into,” states the TikTok’s blog post announcing the activation.

"More and more American small businesses are turning to TikTok to take us inside their world in a fun, authentic way, and as a result, they are reaching new customers, hiring more employees, and growing their business.
By Sofia Hernandez, Global Head of Business Marketing, TikTok

TikTok believes that Small-Medium Business Beauty & Care Week provides “endless opportunities to connect with a passionate community.” Alongside the collaboration with Abraham, TikTok compiled a list of video-styles and hashtags that currently gain the most traction on the app—laying out a clear path to success for businesses that may be considering joining the app to market their products. These included:

  • #GRWM (123.4B views)
  • Inspirational routines: #skincareroutine (55.8B views), #haircareroutine (1.1B views), #makeuproutine (9.2B views), and  #fragrancelayering (2.7M views)
  • Behind-the-scenes content from the brand: box this order with me/come to work with me
  • Responding to comments, duetting and stitching (responding to others in video form) product reviews, and showcasing general trends with top products

Small-Medium Business Beauty & Care Week is not the first time TikTok has created campaigns to uplift smaller businesses. The video-hailing app previously teamed up with American Express as part of its #ShopSmall Accelerator Program that provides small business owners with year-round support, hoping to drive $100B in consumer purchases at small businesses by 2025. The accelerator program includes an offer for eligible small businesses to earn a one-off-$100 in TikTok advertising credit and gives business owners access to tools and resources including a tutorial providing tips on how their business can stand out on the platform. The initiative aims to increase the reported $23B consumer spending from Small Business Saturday that took place in 2021 by becoming a year-round initiative, after it was found that two-thirds of every dollar spent at small businesses stay within the local community.

"More and more American small businesses are turning to TikTok to take us inside their world in a fun, authentic way, and as a result, they are reaching new customers, hiring more employees, and growing their business. The real-world impact is undeniable, with 44% of TikTok users saying they discovered something on the platform and immediately went out to buy it, according to our Global Retail Path To Purchase Study," Sofia Hernandez, Global Head of Business Marketing for TikTok, said at the time of the initiatives launch.

After the pandemic damaged the revenues of several businesses, 76% of consumers have made an effort to support local small businesses. This sense of community and responsibility to give small to medium businesses the opportunity to grow has been adopted by the future of consumers, Gen Z, who have increased their small business spending by 260% since 2021, with many planning to continue this support into the long-term future. As a result, top businesses and social media platforms are leveraging their power to create campaigns and activations that encourage these brands and provide them with the tools needed to thrive. While there will always be room for big brands to make their mark and further their legacies, for now, it seems beauty’s focus is geared towards uplifting smaller, more niche brands—presenting them with a range of opportunities to expand not only their sales but their business as a whole.


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