Finding TikTok influencers that authentically reach your target audience is hard.
Some creators don't have the right audience. Some have fake followers, or low engagement rates. Others don't match your brand values. And so on. So what do you do?
In order to scale influencer marketing on TikTok profitably, you need to find a predictable & repeatable process to find creators that are a good fit. Here's how to do it.
You won't run out of TikTok influencers
Whether you're new to this, or you've been recruiting influencers for years, you won't run out of talent to recruit. No matter how niche your product is.
If you think you're running out of prospective talent, the chances are, you simply need to shift how you're thinking about it.
Let's say you sell luxury, high-end lamps to wealthy people. You aren't looking for 'lamp influencers', because those don't exist. Nobody only talks about lamps. So who do you recruit? Here's Avery Schrader's advice (co-founder at Modash):
"Think about the broader categories that lamps sit within. Target artists, celebrities, and other groups of people with luxurious tastes. It isn't about being an expert in lamps but about authentically engaging your audience on the relevant subject."
Put yourself in the shoes of your end customer. Who do they follow? Whose opinions do they trust?
No matter which of the methods below you use, that mindset shift is important.
11 ways to find TikTok influencers for your next campaign
1. Use an influencer discovery tool
Using a software platform is the most reliable way to find influencers. It's faster, better, and more scalable than other methods.
Here's how using a TikTok influencer search tool like Modash gives you an advantage:
- Database of every TikTok influencer — Modash lists every creator on the platform. The TikTok influencer database has more than 96 million creators.
- Search filters — You can refine your search with filters, including influencer or audience location, keywords, audience demographics, engagement and growth rate, etc.
- Ease of use & accessibility — Most influencer marketing platforms don't offer a free trial, and require annual contracts. You can try all the features of Modash for free. It's very simple, with no learning curve to start.
I'll demonstate how to find TikTok influencers using Modash.
Start a free trial at modash.io, and you'll land in the Discovery tab. Select TikTok, and you will see many filters you can apply.
Let's start applying some filters. Who are you looking for? Here's some ideas for starting criteria:
- A specific follower range, e.g. 3k - 5k followers
- Influencer location and other demographics like gender, language, etc.
- Keywords used in bio, in posts, or hashtags used
🗒️Quick note: Test out 1 to 2 filters at a time and keep narrowing your search until you shortlist a few influencers who best fit your brand.
Here's an example of how I might apply filters based on the example above:
With these search filters, Modash has given me 49K+ profiles. Next, I could:
- Open up profile summaries to analyze their audience & check their content
- Add prospective influencers to a shortlist ready for outreach
- Narrow the search further
To further narrow your search, add more filters one by one to see what happens. Extra filters available include:
- Minimum engagement rate
- Maximum fake follower percentage
- Influencer demographics (gender, age bracket, location, and language)
- Audience demographics (gender, age bracket, location, and language)
- Whether or not a TikTok contact email is available
- How quickly follower count is growing
2. Search for TikTok influencers on Google
You can find everything on Google, including TikTok influencers for your next campaign.
By typing in "your industry + TikTok influencer," you get hundreds of search results, including various articles that list the best TikTok influencers in your industry.
Searching on Google also shows TikTok's own results, and you can directly hop on the platform from there. Be as niche specific as possible, like "best parenting influencers on TikTok" or "top travel influencers on TikTok," to get the most relevant results.
Don't forget to check out the "Video" tab and look at the top videos to find the best influencers.
If you are having trouble generating relevant search results, try to be as specific as possible. For fitness influencers, you can try searching for "gym influencers," "health influencers," etc.
One downside here is that you're unlikely to find those smaller untapped creators. Lists like these will be predominantly well-known influencers.
✅Pro-tip: Don't just focus on your specific niche. Make a list of all the industries that intersect with yours and search for influencers in those industries as well. This way, you will have a list of diverse influencers with an even more diverse audience.
3. Search for influencers on TikTok
Searching on TikTok is a great way to find relevant influencers. The app is designed to help users find new content creators relevant to their interests.
But you can be more proactive about finding the best influencers for your brand. Let's have a look how:
Make a list of keywords that are relevant to your brand and search for video content by using these keywords. The platform will show you creators who are posting content aligned to your keywords and niche.
By using keywords, you get thousands of search results — some of which will be quite generic or completely irrelevant. With so many videos appearing in search results, it is difficult to narrow down your search to find the best influencers through this method.
Hashtags are an excellent way to help you find relevant influencers. You can add ad disclosure hashtags like #ad, #sponsored, and #paidpromotion to discover TikTok influencers already posting sponsored content.
With these hashtags, you can take advantage of the fact that some other businesses have already done the hard work and research to find these influencers. Their research showed that the influencer is legit and has a good reach with the right audience, and they decided to work with them. So searching for sponsored content shows you reliable influencers for long-term collaborations.
By searching through hashtags, you will also learn what type of content gets better engagement and pops up in search results with certain hashtags.
You can also use hashtags that are highly relevant to your niche to narrow down your search. For example, if you are a skincare business with products for acne and wrinkles, use hashtags like #skincare but also go a bit more specific with #acnetips #wrinklefree to find more niched content.
✅Pro-tip: Take time to explore TikTok and how influencers use hashtags and brand mentions and their impact on content reach and engagement.
4. Find influencer lookalikes
If this isn't your first rodeo, and you've already had some success with TikTok influencers, using lookalikes is a great way to find more creators. There's an influencer lookalike tool in Modash that does just that.
To search for TikTok influencers similar to the ones you had previous success with, add their profile link in Modash's discovery tool. The tool will show you a list of lookalike influencers who create similar content with similar audiences.
Here's an example. If you are looking for TikTok influencers like Charli D'Amelio, add the TikTok profile URL (https://www.tiktok.com/@charlidamelio) and search her profile in Modash. The platform gives you 48K+ influencers who create the same type of content and have a similar audience.
When searching lookalikes, it's still possible to layer on extra filters. Combining lookalikes with audience locations, engagement rates & other criteria is a great way to replicate your best influencer marketing campaigns.
5. Keep an eye on the "For You" page
If your brand already has a TikTok account and you are engaging with relevant content, then checking out the "For You" page is a great way to find TikTok influencers.
The "For You" page aims to provide users with the most relevant trending content that matches their interests. If you are already watching, commenting, and interacting with content in your niche industry, your "For You" recommendations will have content and influencers in your niche.
Mostly, creators on the "For You" page are highly sought after due to their high visibility on the platform. So, keep that in mind and look for relevant influencers to collaborate with.
✅Pro-tip: Instead of seeking one influencer with a huge number of followers, collaborate with several micro-influencers. They're likely to be more affordable, have a higher engagement rate, and are easier to reach.
6. Create a brand ambassador program
If you are looking for ways to drive inbound interest & build long-term creator relationships, create a brand ambassador program. Through this program, you will get the attention of content creators genuinely interested in your brand.
Influencers who love your products can be the best long-term brand ambassadors for your company. They help extend your reach to your target audience, form a deeper relationship with your brand, and act as the face of your company.
Here's an example. New York editor-turned-influencer Alyssa Coscarelli teamed up with Petite Studio on a capsule collection designed.
To create a successful brand ambassador program, focus on the perks and highlight the program's exclusivity. Also, create FOMO (fear of missing out) so more content creators apply for the program.
Make sure you have a dedicated landing page for the ambassador program so if interested influencers search for your brand name + ambassador program, it pops up. Without a landing page, people might assume you have no such program, and you will miss out on great opportunities.
Athletic Brewing, a non-alcoholic beer company, has a great ambassador program focused on highlighting the accomplishments of its ambassadors. Their brand ambassador program's landing page has all the information available for influencers to apply for the program.
Alicia Kueker, an athlete who is an Athletic Brewing ambassador, shares her love for the company and how it has encouraged her in her fitness journey.
✅Pro-tip: Engage with your ambassadors on social media. Like, comment, and share their posts relevant to you. This will help you develop a long-standing relationship with them while encouraging other influencers to apply for the program.
7. TikTok creator marketplace
TikTok has a dedicated medium for brands to search for influencers and contact them directly through their creator marketplace.
Create an account on TikTok Ads Manager by entering your business email address and other necessary information. Verify your email and wait for TikTok's approval.
You can customize your profile with your brand logo and other collateral. Now, you are on your way to contacting influencers.
But if it's that simple and an official marketplace of TikTok, why didn't I mention this before? Well, the creator marketplace comes with several significant drawbacks, including:
- Only available in 24 countries, making it hard to collaborate with local influencers
- An exclusive group of creators who can join the marketplace only when they get an invitation from TikTok — making you miss out on hundreds of amazing influencers with huge potential who aren't on the creator marketplace
- Only influencers with 100K+ followers in the marketplace — preventing you from working with nano and micro-influencers
8. Use a TikTok influencer marketing agency
If you are finding it a bit hard to find the best influencers on your own, look for a TikTok influencer marketing agency.
These agencies do all the hard work for you, from finding relevant influencers and creating content to executing campaigns. Hiring an agency also gives you more time to focus on other aspects of your business other than influencer marketing campaigns.
Depending on your budget and what you want help with, an influencer marketing agency can help you with everything, including:
- Researching your target audience
- Influencer matching
- Content creation and management
- Tracking relevant metrics, including ROI
- Campaign analysis
By collaborating with an agency, you don't have to worry about keeping track of the campaign performance. Influencer marketing agencies provide a holistic experience to their clients, including influencer recruitment, content strategy and ideation, campaign execution, and content monitoring.
9. Search through other platforms
Searching for TikTok influencers doesn't mean you have to stick to the platform. Many influencers have profiles on multiple social media platforms with a dedicated following.
If you like an influencer's content on Instagram, see if they have a TikTok account and the kind of content they are creating there.
Similarly, many influencers have a blog where they post life updates while also sharing photos and videos on their Instagram and TikTok profiles. If you like the content an influencer is creating on their Twitter, see if they have a TikTok and how many followers they have there.
By doing a multi-platform search, you can find influencers with an engaged audience on multiple platforms, which can also benefit your campaign.
Let's take the example of Hannah, who is a registered dietitian. If you find her profile on Instagram, she has a dedicated following of 18.2K followers and regularly shares valuable advice about diet and nutrition.
Hannah also has a much bigger following on TikTok, with 48.2K followers, and she makes TikToks to challenge nutrition myths and raise awareness about healthy eating.
10. Analyze your competitors' campaigns
Looking at your competitor's influencer campaigns can be extremely helpful — not just to find influencers for your brand but also to learn about what's working for them and what's not.
You can have a look at the influencers your competitors are collaborating with and find similar influencers for your brand. It will also cut your research time short as you can see what type of influencers are driving results for your competitors and with what kind of content.
By looking at the influencer campaigns by your competitors, you can also see the type of campaigns they are running and come up with unique ideas to stand out from the competition.
11. Ask for recommendations
If you have previously worked with an influencer and trust their judgment, ask them for recommendations on other influencers to collaborate with.
Another way to utilize the influencer's network is by looking at their past videos and checking out the other influencers they teamed up with.
3 ways to ensure a successful collaboration
In addition to finding the perfect influencers for your business, your campaign's success also depends on collaboration with your influencers. Let's have a look at the top three ways to make sure your business prioritizes influencer relationships.
1. Carefully vet the influencers
Before you start your influencer relationship, check the kind of content they are creating to get a feel for their brand identity. It's important to know that their values generally align with your brand's.
Also, vet the influencers by looking at their engagement rate and how they engage with their audience. See if their content reaches your target audience and whether they will be able to put your business in front of prospective customers.
Modash’s influencer analytics tool gives a detailed overview of an influencer's profile — including engagement rate, audience location, lookalikes, and much more. Look at this example of fitness influencer Eyal Booker with 295K followers on TikTok.
Another critical factor to note is whether they have credibility in their industry. See if they have authority over relevant topics and if their audience takes their advice on specific issues and listens to them.
2. Develop a smooth onboarding process
After carefully vetting and recruiting your TikTok influencers, it's time to onboard them.
Onboarding influencers is a huge part of your influencer collaboration as it's basically their first impression of your business.
Ensure a smooth onboarding process by providing detailed influencer briefs, including:
- Company and product overview: Add a concise introduction to your company and product, including links to About, Team, and Product pages.
- Campaign overview: Include details like the purpose of your campaign, when it will begin, who you are trying to reach, etc. Also, add the KPIs and objectives of the campaign.
- Deliverables and timeline: What do you expect from creators and when.
- Guidelines: Add all the helpful materials, including brand voice and tone, visual guidelines, etc.
- Payment details: Although it should be a part of your influencer contract, adding payment details at the end of a brief is a good option.
3. Don't micro-manage your influencers
The contract is signed, the brief is sent over, and the influencer is busy creating content for your campaign. Now is the time to remember that you should avoid micromanaging your influencers to ensure smooth and successful collaboration.
You are collaborating with these influencers because they are good at what they do and know what their audience responds to and engages with.
Don't micro-manage influencers about the content they create. After providing them with a comprehensive brief, take a step back and let them do their magic. Give them the autonomy to create videos that showcase their personal style.
If you get in the way too much, you risk losing the authenticity that makes influencer campaigns stand out.
Start collaborating with the best TikTok influencers today!
By following our 11-step guide, you are on your way to finding the most relevant TikTok influencers for your business who share your brand values and have an engaged following.
To ensure your influencer marketing campaigns are a huge success, sign up to Modash for an all-in-one influencer marketing platform that helps you discover influencers, manage all your campaigns in one place, and monitor all the campaign analytics. Sign up for a 14-day free trial today.