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TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenge and 3 Successful Brand Examples

Branded hashtag challenge TikTok

In present days, TikTok is definitely a game-changer in the marketing landscape with the advent of avant-garde ad creative tools that enhance every business campaign. Branded Hashtag Challenge, one of the latest features on TikTok, is not an exception.

Fully potential, TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenge (HTC) may be the most preferable tool on TikTok to drive engagement and encourage people to participate in the brand’s activities. So in this article, we’ll figure out the definition of HTC and how to make an outstanding HTC that can take over TikTok.

What is TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenge?

Branded hashtag challenges are those challenges that have sponsored TikTok hashtags by brands. They’re often displayed as ad banners on TikTok’s Discover Page or shown on a challenge page. Brands that use HTC have a huge chance of boosting awareness, sparking interactivity, and forming a big fanbase.


What do you get when you combine advertising and TikTok creators? Welcome to your very own Branded Hashtag Challenge! #AdTok #smallbusiness

♬ original sound – TikTok For Business

On TikTok, hashtags can play an important role in supporting users to discover videos they’re interested in, participate in whatever topic they love, and create communities centered around their passions. Furthermore, a video’s visibility on the For You Page would be increased thanks to hashtags.

Hashtags gain even greater impact when used in challenges that encourage TikTok users to partake in the brand’s activities like dancing, singing, or performing a specific action. Before posting their videos, TikTok users only have to include the corresponding branded hashtag to win the prize of the sponsored brand, but most of the time challenges are all about fun and connection. 

Why should Businesses execute Branded Hashtag Challenges?

Branded Hashtag Challenge is an amusing way for brands to tap into trends and create unique branded moments. When equipped with the best-in-class editing tools, any brand can become the smartest storyteller, capable of interpreting their brand and product from their user’s perspective in a way that resonates with the TikTok community. 

The crowdsourced creativity achieves a win-win situation by inviting the audience to become part of the marketing campaign. This allows advertisers to amass unparalleled engagement, spark organic visibility and generate full-funnel impact.


Rating songs with my bf – I feel like we mostly agree! Join the @spotify #HowDuoYouListen challenge! 🤗Anzeige/Ad

♬ DuoChallenge – Spotify

To sum up, consider using Branded Hashtag Challenge for these specific reasons:

drive authentic engagement
Source: TikTok
  • Amplification through paid and organic exposure.
amplify brand exposure
Source: TikTok
  • Full funnel impact with complementary ad solutions.
make full funnel impact
Source: TikTok

TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenges best practices for your next ad campaign

5 effective ways to maximize the campaign’s impact 

Make a collaboration

To increase interaction and strengthen your ties to the community, why don’t you try TikTok brand collaboration? Let’s team together with a variety of different TikTok creators to appeal to more audiences and hit multiple niches at once.


I’m not perfect, but my lashes are 💅🏻💕 #BIGGERisBETTER with Big Poppa Mascara #wetnwildambassador #bigpoppamascara @wetnwildbeauty

♬ Big Poppa Heart Stoppa – wetnwildbeauty

Increase your presence

You can enhance your brand’s visibility with TikTok Branded Effect, a creative tool that engraves your brand message into the users’ minds while they play around, create, and have fun with your videos.

On the other hand, you’re also able to maximize your visibility by making the most of open-screen products like Top View ads that fill the entire screen when users first open the TikTok app. Adding Top View to a Branded HTC can increase the likelihood that users will upload a related video by 5 times.

Top view ads
Source: TikTok

Improve offline traffic 

Sharing your HTC’s unique QR code everywhere you can is a way to boost offline traffic. Furthermore, including your brand name in the hashtag will provide the views on videos created for the challenge an extra layer of brand identification as well as encourage the TikTok community to support your brand more strongly and foster a bond.

branded hashtag QR code
Source: TikTok

Re-target engaged audiences

Remember to use the TikTok Auction Ads to keep the challenge going and attract more audiences.

Bonus tips to make the best TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenge ever

Do you know that using add-ons is one of the simplest ways to give your HTC an extra spark? If you don’t, here’re some awesome ideas for your next ad challenge.

HTC + Branded Effect

Create more relevant and brand-consistent videos by using a distinctive 2D or 3D effect, such as an animated background or responsive mask.

HTC + Hashtag Emoji

Make a stand by utilizing a unique brand emoji that is shown next to the hashtag anywhere it appears, including in videos, search results, and the official hashtag website. According to an analysis by TikTok, the hashtag emoji had a 43% increase in clicks, which encouraged more organic engagement.

HTC + Contest

Invite people to participate in a creative contest with a desirable prize to start the Branded Hashtag Challenge. The official guidelines will be visible on your HTC main page to help participants stay on track and keep UGC relevant.

HTC + Explore Page

Including a “Explore” option on your official challenge page will lead to a TikTok app landing page that can be customized. This is ideal for increasing awareness of your products, brand, or offline store. To get feedback from your clients, you can even put up a user survey here.

Other than that, you can find out more go-to tips for effectively launching your TikTok Branded Challenge in these videos below.

How to create a TikTok Branded HTC campaign


Starting a Branded Hashtag Challenge? Check out these best practices to make the most of your moment! #tiktoktips #tiktokmarketing

♬ original sound – TikTok for Business

Key takeaways:

  • Invite TikTok users to engage with your content by responding with their own videos.
  • Build a strong strategy starting with setting a goal and leveraging hashtags.
  • Remember to give a cue or introduce your product early in the video.
  • Make sure the challenge aligns with your brand. Keep it fun and simple.

Tips for finding the right creator for your HTC campaign


Trying to find the right creators shouldn’t put the “challenge” in Branded Hashtag Challenge. And with these tips, it won’t! #tiktokmarketing #tiktoktips

♬ original sound – TikTok for Business

Key takeaways:

Tip for being an ideal collaborator


Connecting with the right creators can help increase the chances your HTC takes over the FYP. 🤝 #tiktoktips #tiktokmarketing

♬ original sound – TikTok for Business

Key takeaways:

  • Present clear goals and visions for the campaign as well as have a good brief
  • Give creators straightforward expectations and requirements for content but allow them creative freedom
  • Be clear on timelines from the beginning
  • Maintain good communication with creators
  • Be authentic with your brand

Tips for developing your HTC sound


Make your Branded Hashtag Challenge sound like success with these tips for developing your HTC sound. 🎵 #tiktoktips #tiktokmarketing

♬ original sound – TikTok for Business

Key takeaways:

  • Utilize available brand asset
  • Custom your own music
  • License an existing track

Tip for amplifying your HTC performance


See the power (literally) of organic amplification when you create a Branded Effect for your next Hashtag Challenge. #tiktoktips #learnontiktok #tiktokmarketing

♬ original sound – TikTok for Business

Key takeaways:

  • Combine Branded HTC with a Branded Effect or other ad formats
  • Run Auction in-feed ads to retarget your exposed audiences

3 Outstanding TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenges that can inspire your business

Guess: #InMyDenim

In 2018, Guess, a famous American clothing brand and retailer, wanted to promote their Fall Denim Fit Collection aiming to portray a confident, sexy and adventurous brand image and drive awareness of millennials and Gen Z consumers.

To achieve this goal, Guess launched the #InMyDenim TikTok HTC to let consumers transform their looks with the slogan “Transform your outfit from a mess to best-dressed! All you need is denim!”


Don’t you wish getting ready was this easy? 😂❤️🔥 #inmydenim #sponsored @guess

♬ #inmydenim I’m a Mess – Bebe Rexha

The results of this HTC were amazing. The 6-day campaign gained over 5,550 user-generated videos with a total of 10.5 million views. The engagement rate reached 14.3% while the CTR of Brand Takeover was 16.5% and Guess’s TikTok Business Account grew by 12,000 additional followers.

Samsung: #MakeMomEpic

In 2021, the global leading smartphone brand Samsung launched its TikTok Hashtag Challenge #MakeMomEpic around the time of Mother’s Day to promote its brand new Samsung Galaxy.

To highlight the world-class camera and at the same time honor all the hero moms out there, Samsung HTC urged users to show their mother’s greatness and use the branded hashtag to participate in the challenge.

In the end, this HTC sponsored by Samsung was widely successful with 1.4 billion engagements and 4.7 million videos created resulting in 12.4 billion views. To be honest, this was beyond imagination.

Aerie: #AerieREALPositivity

Aerie is an American intimate apparel and lifestyle retailer and is a sub-brand owned by American Eagle Outfitters. In the 2020 COVID pandemic outbreak, Aerie launched its #AerieREALPositivity Challenge to remind everyone to stay optimistic and to inspire people to spread this message worldwide.


Guys pls tag @aerie in the comments, this isn’t sponsored at all, I just absolutely love everything they stand for! #aerierealpositivity #aeriereal

♬ 100% Real Love – PopUpGirl

With this meaningful message, Aerie soon had a lot of TikTok users support and join its HTC. Within the course of two weeks, over 562,100 video creations and 2 billion video views were recorded, making Aerie Branded Hashtag Challenge a remarkable example for other brands to follow.

Time to name your next TikTok Branded Hashtag Challenge

Once you understand the basics of HTCs and have some bright ideas for motivation, you’re ready to take your ad campaign to the next level. Since TikTok Branded HTCs can enhance the power of user participation, brands really should take them into consideration.

Wonder what your next ad campaign will look like? Let’s try TikTok Branded HTCs. And if you want to leverage and optimize your ads to make a great HTC, we got your back! Feel free to contact our experts at NestAds to have precious advice.


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