, Vietnam
Photo by Collabstr via Unsplash

How TikTok drives consumer behavior through ‘shoppertainment’

It seamlessly integrates product discovery with entertainment value.

TIKTOK is setting the stage for the future of retailing, directing an interplay between shopping and entertainment to provide consumers with immersive experiences that go beyond just mere transactions.

Speaking at the recent Retail Asia Forum in Ho Chi Minh City, Naree Nguyễn, the company’s head of key account partnerships in Vietnam, gave a sneak peek into their strategic approach to moulding future consumer behaviour and commerce.

“Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy to the user,” said Nguyễn as she introduced the audience to the idea she framed as “Shoppertainment: The Future of Consumer & Commerce.”

At the core of TikTok’s shoppertainment strategy is the creation of captivating content that not only grabs attention but also generates genuine interest and excitement amongst users. 

“You can see how much creativity thrives on TikTok and how much entertainment flourished. We also see how joy can bring our users back to TikTok,” Nguyễn said.

Unlike traditional approaches, shoppertainment prioritises creating engaging content that educates, entertains, and inspires consumers, seamlessly integrating product discovery with entertainment value.

Nguyễn revealed that 70% of TikTok users seek joy on the platform, whilst one in three users discovers new products or brands through the personalised For You page. 

Additionally, about 61% of users make purchases directly on the platform or shortly after viewing products, as per TikTok's global study.

Nguyễn stressed TikTok’s unique position in facilitating discovery across various stages of the consumer journey, including direct-to-consumer channels, third-party marketplaces, and offline stores.

“This is where shoppertainment comes in. This is the next wave of commerce. Shoppertainment is defined as the content-driven commerce that educates and entertains first,” she said.

TikTok’s Food Solution empowers brands to leverage content to drive commerce, increase conversion rates, and enhance the shopping experience.

“Besides that, we also can increase the traffic and also frequency of purchases by creating content with actionable plans through the shopping ads. And we also can increase the consumers by building communities on TikTok,” she said.

Nguyễn also noted the growth potential of shoppertainment, citing projections of a $1t opportunity by 2025 globally, with Vietnam forecasted to experience a 66% CAGR growth, reaching $8.1b.

Content over discounts
Tiktok, in partnership with Accenture, yielded insights into shifting consumer behaviours. The study found a preference for content over discounts, seamless shopping experiences, and community engagement through content.

With 79% of consumers prioritising content over discounts, impulse buying is giving way to more thoughtful, intuitive purchasing decisions.

Around 81% of consumers seek an all-in-one shopping experience, emphasising the need for effortless browse-to-buy functionality. 

Additionally, consumers are increasingly drawn to content communities, with 73% actively connecting through content.

“They want to connect with other consumers, not only in one-way communication, they want to connect with others through content communities,” she added.

Nguyễn said there are two types of markets in the Asia Pacific region, namely the social-oriented and product-oriented markets.

“The social-oriented market like Vietnam, the consumers will focus on the recommendations and reviews from creators and users rather than looking into discounts or information,” she explained.

“But in Indonesia and Japan, they do not care or focus on who recommends; they focus on the offers, the deals from the brand,” Nguyễn added.

The PACE model
To address these shifts, TikTok introduced the PACE model which focuses on: Personalisation, Assortment strategy, Content creation, and Empowerment.

Brands are encouraged to use TikTok’s platform and tools, including the Shop app and TikTok Shop ads, to capitalise on the shoppertainment trend and connect with consumers effectively.

This framework empowers brands to understand user personas, align product offerings with consumer preferences, and leverage various content formats to drive engagement and interaction.

“If you see the customer segment as a persona, the brand can approach, can tap into different attitudes or different interests or even different preferences,” said Nguyễn. “And we can see our consumer not only as a buyer, but they are unique individuals with interests and also with passions.”

It is important to realise that strategic alignment of product, price, and promotion ensures how offerings resonate with consumer preferences.

Nguyễn stressed that leveraging diverse content formats, from brand content to creator-led initiatives, also maximises engagement and drives consumer interaction. 

Finally, empowering consumers to engage with content at their convenience fosters a seamless flow between discovery and purchase, she said.

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