TikTok has experienced exponential growth in the short time it’s been on the social media scene. The video-only social media platform lets users create and share 15–60-second videos on any number of topics. TikTok includes video editing tools and an enormous sound library, so it’s delightfully easy to create high-quality videos sure to engage your target audience, whoever they may be.
Many brands and influencers have started embracing the engaging, viral nature of TikTok, along with its easy-to-use video creation platform, to run TikTok challenges that help them boost brand awareness or signal boost something they’re passionate about. Here, we’re going to show you the 3 steps you can take to create your own TikTok challenge as well as share 7 of our favorite TikTok challenge examples to inspire you.
7 TikTok Challenge Examples You’ll Love [+ How to Create Your Own]:
What Are TikTok Challenges?
TikTok challenges can be based on just about anything. The only rule seems to be that they should be relatively easy to replicate and interesting enough to catch the attention of your target audience. Most of the organic TikTok challenges are easy things like the Pushup Challenge (literally just people doing pushups) and the “Roses are Red” Challenge (wherein people are challenged to complete a “roses are red” poem).
@lukeisjustagoat##fyp##foryoupage##rosesarered##lmao##funny##fypge##viral##blowthisup##content♬ original sound – kumaj_youtube
Challenges are a fun and unique way to get your followers and target audience to create and share user-generated content that build buzz around your brand. When executed well, challenges have enormous potential to go viral. Your brand can leverage challenges to generate relatable content, increase brand awareness, and build a thriving TikTok community.
In this article, our focus is going to be on branded challenges. If you’re a brand or TikTok influencer who wants to get your audience excited and engaged with your content, a TikTok challenge is one of the best ways to make it happen.
How to Create a Branded Hashtag Challenge on TikTok
Like Instagram, TikTok uses hashtags to help its users find and share content that they’re interested in. This also makes it easy to build your own community around a branded hashtag on the platform. If you’re trying to find the right hashtags to use on TikTok, our TikTok Hashtag Generator is here to help you out.
While it’s not required, you can also give your branded hashtag challenge a boost with TikTok ads. TikTok lets you choose your ad placements and budget, target just the right audience, set optimization goals, and bid for each ad group. Once you have everything set up and activate, your ad will show up as part of the natural TikTok feed with a small, unassuming “skip ad” button in the top right corner.
A great example of a branded hashtag challenge is from global lifestyle brand Guess, best known for its denim. The brand partnered with TikTok influencers for a 6-day #InMyDenim branded hashtag challenge, garnering more than 5,500 user-generated videos, 14.3% engagement rate, 10.5 million video views, and more than 12,000 new followers for the Guess brand TikTok account.
And these challenges are a gift that keeps on giving. The InMyDenim hashtag has nearly 52 million views as of this writing.
@ourfireDon’t you wish getting ready was this easy? 😂❤️🔥 ##inmydenim ##sponsored @guess♬ #inmydenim I’m a Mess – Bebe Rexha
Wondering how to go about creating your own branded hashtag challenge on TikTok? It really comes down to 3 steps:
- Plan your TikTok challenge campaign
- Plan your TikTok challenge content
- Create and publish your TikTok challenge
Here’s a breakdown of each step.
Plan Your TikTok Challenge Campaign
Before you get started, decide on your goal for your TikTok challenge. Do you want to boost brand awareness and get more followers on the platform? Are you promoting a specific product? Do you want to increase sales?
Once you have a goal set, decide how you’ll measure success, the metrics you need to track, and how you’re going to track them. Google Analytics is an easy and free way to set up and track goal completions, uses of a certain promo code, or anything else that would be helpful for your brand to know.
When it comes time to promote your TikTok challenge, you have a few different options, depending on the size of your business:
- Partner with TikTok starting from $150K a day. Yes, it’s pricey. This is for those big brands like Doritos and Guess.
- Hire an influencer (or a few!) and run an influencer marketing campaign. Many brands use this approach to create a coordinated launch of their TikTok challenge campaign that makes a big splash right away.
- Offer a prize and turn your TikTok challenge into a competition. Running a competition on the platform can get complicated—you don’t want to run afoul of copyright laws, for example. There are tools like SweepWidget that can help you run a legal TikTok challenge competition.
After you’ve decided how to promote your TikTok challenge, come up with some ideas about what it will look like. Let your imagination run wild here; you can tone it down after you’ve come up with tons of ideas to choose from. When you’re just getting started, though, the sky’s the limit!
Before you move on to creating content for your TikTok challenge, you’ll need to settle on a concept and then come up with challenge hashtag ideas that will work. This means doing some research on TikTok before you choose the hashtag you’re running with since the hashtag you want might already be in use.
Plan Your TikTok Challenge Content
Now that you know what you want to get from your TikTok challenge and you’ve figured out your concept and the hashtags you want to use, it’s time to plan out your content. The best TikTok challenges need to be somewhat easy for your target audience to complete, or they’re not going to bother trying. So, don’t expect challenge participants to spend tons of money or learn tons of complex dance moves (or do anything that will put them in danger).
An excellent example of a challenge that fits these parameters is Jimmy Fallon’s Tumbleweed Challenge.
@fallontonightJimmy takes the ##TumbleweedChallenge! Show us your best tumbleweed!♬ #TumbleweedChallenge – The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon
For this challenge, participants were only expected to roll around like a tumbleweed to participate.
Here’s what you need to create an awesome TikTok challenge.
Choose the Right TikTok Sound
The TikTok challenge sound you choose could be an original sound or a sound clip you’ve come across on the platform. TikTok has a massive sound library, so you’re probably going to find everything you need right on the platform. Just make sure that the sound you choose makes sense for your challenge and industry.
Choreograph Your TikTok Challenge
There has to be a point to your challenge. Guess asked users to show a “glow up” of sorts, starting their challenge videos by wearing non-stylish clothes before changing into Guess brand items where they (the brand hopes) show off how innovative and versatile their apparel is. Many TikTok challenges are based around dance moves, but you can go with whatever makes sense for your brand.
Create and Publish Your TikTok Challenge Video
Your TikTok challenge is coming along nicely. So far, you’ve:
- Set a goal
- Chosen metrics to track
- Picked a hashtag
- Planned out what your challenge will look like
Now you’re ready to start filming. You can do this using a single video or multiple clips. We recommend sticking with a single video to make sure users are finding the right video for the challenge. You can edit your videos right in the TikTok platform, but if you’re looking for something a bit less basic, here are our picks for the best TikTok video editing apps.
7 TikTok Challenge Examples to Learn From
No matter your budget, there are tons of ways you can create a fun and engaging TikTok challenge to increase brand awareness and get more followers. If you’re not sure what your TikTok challenge should look like, here are 7 of our fave TikTok challenge examples to inspire you.
1. Guess: #InMyDenim
@operamericanoGuess who’s feeling confident 😘 @guess ##inmydenim ##sponsored ##makeeverysecondcount ##fashion ##model♬ #inmydenim I’m a Mess – Bebe Rexha
In September 2018, when TikTok was just a baby, Guess was the first brand in the United States to partner with TikTok for a marketing campaign. They launched a 6-day campaign using a TopView TikTok ad format that meant every TikTok user in the U.S. would be sent to Guess’ #InMyDenim hashtag challenge when they opened the app.
2. Chipotle: #GuacDance
@brentriveraWhen guacamole is free @chipotle when you order online/in-app on July 31st😍 ##GuacDance ##ad♬ The Guacamole Song – Dr. Jean
If you follow marketing, it should come as no surprise that Chipotle is popular on TikTok. They were one of the first brands to really take off on the platform and they gleefully dove into branded hashtag challenges. With the #GuacDance challenge, Chipotle challenged its audience to choreograph their own dance for free guacamole on National Avocado Day.
The #GuacDance challenge has 1.1 billion views as of this writing.
3. Samsung: #GalaxyA
@bp_tiktokCome ##danceAwesome with us!🥰 @Samsung ##GalaxyA ##Ad♬ 오리지널 사운드 – blackpinkofficial
Samsung used a branded hashtag challenge to celebrate the launch of their Galaxy A smartphone, challenging users to play around with TikTok’s transition effects and create innovative visual content that aligned with Samsung’s abstract brand message. This hashtag has more than 242.3 million views as of this writing.
4. Kaiser Permanente: #OwnTheCurve
@probablythisYour gay uncles want you to ##OwnTheCurve (no. 5 is the most important 👌) ##HappyAtHome ##indoorworkout ##fyp ##yourgayuncles♬ I Gotta Feeling – DODODOGGY（抖音小助手）
Healthcare giant Kaiser Permanente used a TikTok hashtag challenge to encourage users to simply follow CDC guidelines to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and help “flatten the curve” by doing something creative while observing the guidelines. Kaiser Permanente promoted staying home, washing your hands, and practicing social distancing and users responded by sharing themselves doing things like practicing yoga or learning to play the guitar.
This hashtag has more than 1.1 billion views as of this writing.
5. BMW: #THE1Challenge
@patroxofficialBeauty and the Beast 🤩 but who is the Beast ? 🤪 ##THE1challenge ##BMW ##The1 ##patrox♬ Originalton – patroxofficial
BMW took the long game approach with its #THE1Challenge. In this challenge, BMW asked several influencers to create clips of them dancing in, on, and around its new 1 Series. Since brand preferences are set early on in a consumer’s life, BMW opted to showcase its 1 Series on TikTok even though most users on the platform are under 24 years old and in no position to buy a BMW right now just to endear them to the brand for later.
6. SCOOB! The Movie: #ScoobDance
@jalaiahharmonWho’s ready to ‘Doo’ the ##ScoobDance with me? Go ahead and learn it just in time to watch @scoobmovie at home on May 15! ##SCOOB ##WBSponsored♬ Slide to the Left (feat. Lil SCOOB) – Mystery Gang
This fun and silly TikTok challenge example is brought to you from SCOOB! The Movie. Using #ScoobDance, the challenge encourages users to learn the Scoob Dance and share their sweet moves on TikTok. Since dancing is a huge part of TikTok culture, it’s no surprise that the TikTok challenge was a success. The brand even partnered with Jalaiah Harmon, the original creator of the viral TikTok dance the renegade, to lend credibility and authenticity to their TikTok challenge.
#ScoobDance has 6.8 billion views as of this writing.
7. E.L.F. Cosmetics: #EyesLipsFace
@terrycrews##eyeslipsface I’M SO PRETTY.!##budgetfashion #♬ Eyes. Lips. Face. (e.l.f.) – iLL Wayno & Holla FyeSixWun
The #EyesLipsFace challenge was launched in 2019 by e.l.f. Cosmetics with a simple request to users: show us your best makeup looks (and win $250 worth of e.l.f. products). Given that e.l.f. stands for “eyes lips face,” this branded challenge was absolutely perfect for brand awareness. The brand partnered with TikTok to create an original sound for their challenge. The challenge has more than 6 billion views.
Embrace TikTok Challenges to Boost Brand Awareness and Reach
TikTok is still in its infancy and based on its unbelievable growth in the short time it’s been around, there’s no reason to doubt that it will continue to attract influencers and content creators in droves. The level of talent on the platform, and dedication to the platform from its users, are an excellent argument for taking your brand’s marketing campaigns onto the platform.
And TikTok challenges are one of the best ways to do it.
Using the steps we’ve covered in this article, and the TikTok challenge examples we’ve included, you’re well on your way to creating the next viral TikTok challenge that will skyrocket brand awareness.