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Nicola Mira
Sep 15, 2022
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Study shows TikTok hot on Facebook’s heels in brand ads market

Translated by
Nicola Mira
Sep 15, 2022

Of the $529.7 million in social media advertising bought in Q2 2022 by 5,000 e-commerce sites monitored by e-commerce metrics specialist Triple Whale, some $29.9 million were spent on TikTok, equivalent to a 60.3% increase over the previous quarter. A very fast growth rate that did not prevent Facebook from staying top of the online ad investment leaderboard, far ahead of Google and Snap, despite growing quite modestly. Triple Whale’s study estimated that the Chinese video platform could soon catch up with and outperform its US competitor on the brand advertising front.


Figures for the April-June 2022 period highlighted the brutal acceleration in advertising spend on TikTok. In H1 2022, consumer brands invested $48.4 million in advertising on the Chinese video platform, equivalent to a staggering 231% increase over H1 2021. Triple Whale found that it was mainly small sites, generating annual sales between $1 million and $5 million, that were responsible for this highly sustained increase.

“If your store has a comparable sales execution rate, take note: it's time to get started on TikTok while the growth arrow is still pointing upwards, and before [TikTok] users are completely flooded with new brand ads,” is Triple Whale’s unambiguous advice. According to Triple Whale, TikTok is “a channel that advertising buyers can no longer avoid without reducing their revenue and profits.” Above all, TikTok “could soon overtake Facebook as the most popular platform [for brand advertising].”

However, Facebook still continues to lead the pack. In Q1 2022, the brand advertising spend on Facebook was $377 million, although the growth rate was rather modest, only 5.6% over the previous quarter. The Meta group’s flagship social media platform was unsurprisingly followed in the ranking by Google, with $118.9 million in ad revenue, up 20.5% over the previous quarter. As for Snap, it posted a 10.8% ad revenue decrease in Q2, with $2.9 million.

The upper chart shows ad spend distribution by product category as tracked by Triple Whale. Beneath, the ad investment's efficiency ratio by product category - Triple Whale

Apparel and beauty products are far ahead of other categories in terms of consumer advertising investment across the various platforms. Jewellery, watches, accessories and footwear follow, though preceded by home & garden and food & beverages. The study also assessed the ad spend’s marketing efficiency (total category sales over advertising expenditure): the ratio was 5.04 for apparel, 3.37 for beauty products, 3.36 for jewellery, 4.04 for accessories, and 3.63 for footwear.

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