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What is a Hashtag challenge on TikTok?

Hashtag challenge is an essential element of TikTok, providing inspiration for users to create their own takes on trending content, and take part in broader shifts. They’ve become so big that they’ve even passed a key social media milestone – they’ve been cloned by Instagram, which means that they must be gaining real traction.

What is a Hashtag challenge ?

The general idea of hashtag challenges is that users create videos that benefit your brands’ reputation and awareness.

In short, TikTok hashtags play a major role on TikTok, and hashtag challenges drive the most user engagement across the whole platform.

What is a A branded hashtag challenge ?

A branded hashtag challenge is one where a brand asks people to perform a certain task and tag them using a specific hashtag.

Challenges like these are very popular on social media platforms, including TikTok.

While hashtag challenges do have a tendency to go viral, not all challenges actually do. That is why we have compiled a list of tips to help you create a successful hashtag challenge.

In this post, we will discuss some tips that can help you create and launch a successful branded hashtag challenge on TikTok.

Here’s how TikTok officially describes the power of branded hashtag challenges:

“The branded hashtag challenge taps into users’ passion for creation and expression by inviting them to join in on a collective movement.”

And here’s what they say about how brands can use the challenges:

“The branded hashtag challenge is a fun and easy way for brands to collaborate and seamlessly integrate with the TikTok community.”

The Importance of Hashtags on TikTok

Similar to Instagram hashtags, it also play a significant role on TikTok. They are the primary way how users share and find content, but also how communities are built.

Through hashtags, content creators spot emerging trends and figure out which niches are dominating the platform.

The general idea of hashtag challenges is that users create videos that benefit your brands’ reputation and awareness.

It’s about user-generated content.

Those challenges have a vast potential of going viral across the platform.

In short, hashtags play a major role on TikTok, and hashtag challenges drive the most user engagement across the whole platform.

What is a UGC hashtag contest ?

A UGC hashtag contest is a giveaway for which a business asks its followers to post a piece of content on a social network, accompanied by a specific hashtag, in exchange for a chance to win a prize.

The user’s content might be a photo, video, review, or even some text, like a recipe. Each time someone posts anything containing the unique hashtag, they’re entered to win a prize. A winner is chosen either at random (technically making the contest a “sweepstakes”) or by criteria the brand decides, such as by number of votes, or by letting a panel of judges choose the winner.

Key points about hashtag challenges

  • Hashtag challenges are one of the significant ways how (big) brands can use TikTok for their marketing. Some of the most successful hashtag challenges so far generated several billions of impressions.
  • While anyone can create a hashtag challenge, the odds of others joining you and the challenge going viral is quite low if you do it without a clear purpose or in a very engaging way.
  • When brands create hashtag challenges, they often pay for ads so that the challenge spreads across the platform quickly.
  • Usually, companies have concrete goals when they create hashtag challenges. These might be creating awareness for a new product, generating leads for a new service, or increasing general brand awareness. They initiate the whole campaign with a clear purpose so that they can measure whether the entire campaign was successful or not.

Why TikTokers Love the Hashtag Challenge ?

TikTok users love creating content through hashtag challenges. If they are set up correctly, hashtag challenges can go viral and give your brand a boost quickly, as many people will join and create content.

Participating in hashtag challenges is incredibly easy for content creators, as it doesn’t take them more than a few clicks. This ease of participation is a huge benefit for brands.

As mentioned above, hashtag challenges are driving enormous engagement on the platform. One of the reasons is that users can interpret challenges in their own way.

While there are some introductory videos guiding users on how to do the challenge, there’s actually no right or wrong. Even if you are joining an existing challenge, you can come up with new ideas and perform uniquely. This diversity and the massive room for creativity is what makes TikTok so entertaining and successful.

Hashtag challenges and influencers

Hashtag challenges are a great way to collaborate with big TikTok influencers. These will also help your brand to get known and loved by the TikTok community.

If your brand doesn’t have a proper TikTok account yet, the best way to go might be collaborating with bigger influencers on the platform anyway. By doing so, you can ensure to reach a wide audience quickly and probably cheaper than solely through ads.

Depending on the goals of the whole campaign, it might make sense to work with several different influencers at once.

If you browse through current hashtag challenges, you’ll realize that on top of the challenges’ page, some of the first videos are marked with a red label saying “original”. These are the videos of the influencers with whom the brand initially collaborated for their challenge.

Also Read:

Influencer Targeting : How to Find the Best Influencers For Your Business

Successful Hashtag Challenges

  • Guess — #inmydenim

The fashion brand Guess was among one of the first companies to launch a hashtag challenge on TikTok.

They worked with some big influencers of the platform and created the #inmydenim challenge, where users simply show how they wear their Guess jeans.

Through this challenge, they reached more than 40 million views across the whole platform, and the videos are still getting engagement.

  • Jimmy Fallon — #tumbleweedchallenge

Shortly after Jimmy Fallon stumbled upon TikTok, he collaborated with the platform to create his own hashtag challenge, the #tumbleweedchallenge, which generated around 30 million views so far.

After the tumbleweed challenge, they kicked off another one: #sharpiechallenge, which was dedicated to raising awareness for cancer and calling attention to “No-shave November”.

  • Chipotle — #guacdance

On National Avocado Day, Chipotle came up with the #guacdance, which encouraged fans to share dance moves dedicated to guacamole. And with more than 900 million views, the whole campaign was a terrific success and sales increased tremendously.

Tips for Launching Hashtag Challenges on TikTok :

  • 1. Do Your Research

When planning to create your own hashtag challenge, the first thing you need to do is to do some research. Look at the successful hashtag challenges in the past that went viral.

Analyze them and identify patterns and commonalities in those successful challenges that made them viral. Does it always have to be funny or will anything that people find interesting do? Do cause-based challenges work better?

  • 2. Create a Share worthy Hashtag

One common element between all social media challenges is that each had a specific hashtag. These hashtags are what help make a challenge go viral.

How it works is that you challenge people to do something and then post it on social media using a hashtag specific to that challenge. People start participating in the challenge and use the hashtag. The hashtag trends on the social media platform, attracting even more participants.

That, in fact, is how a social media challenge goes viral. An added benefit of using a hashtag is that it makes it easy to track all the posts from people who participated in the challenge.

How to run a hashtag Challenge on TikTok

  • 3. Make it Memorable

If you look at the most successful social media challenges of the past, you will immediately recall some of them right away, but forget the others. The Ice Bucket Challenge, Ten Year Challenge, and Mannequin Challenge are few that come to mind.

What is it that makes these challenges so memorable, while others just come and go?

The first factor, of course, is the popularity. The more popular a challenge is, the more people remember it.

  • 4. Select the Right Audio

Another important component of a viral hashtag challenge is the audio. Most successful hashtag challenges have distinctive audio that plays as you undertake the challenge.

The audio should be relevant to your challenge and also engaging for your audience.

  • 5. Lay Down Clear Rules

Now, coming to the actual challenge, you need to lay down the rules of exactly what the challenge is and how to participate. Do you want people to perform a certain task? Can they give it their own creative twist? If so, then what should remain constant in all the challenge videos?

You need to think about these questions and then set clear rules for your branded hashtag challenge.

Bottom Line

Currently, hashtag challenges are one of the most effective ways for brands to build a reputation on TikTok.

They can lead to an increase in conversions, leads, overall sales, and improve the whole reputation of the brand.

If you are a solo-entrepreneur or running a small business, going viral through hashtag challenges might be much harder and costlier than for a huge brand.

Also Read:

What Is Social Media Engagement ? Why is it so Important ?