How to Use TikTok to Advertise Your Boba Tea Business
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How to Use TikTok to Advertise Your Boba Tea Business

By: Lauren Landry

Learn the basics and best practices of TikTok advertising for your boba tea shop, giving you an edge over competitors.


TikTok had about 78.7 million users in the U.S. in 2021, and this number is expected to reach 84.9 million by the end of 2022. Without a doubt, TikTok is the fastest-growing social media app in the country and is very popular among younger audiences. In fact, Pew Research reported that most TikTok users are under 30 years old, and both Gen-Zers and Millennials represent the largest age groups of people using the app in the U.S.

On the other hand, a recent CLSA survey found that 94% of consumers who bought boba tea in the past three months were aged between 20 and 29, proving that the majority of boba tea customers belong to the younger generation. Aesthetic boba tea beverages resonate with younger audiences who also, most of the time, take photos of food and share them on social media. With that said, investing in TikTok advertising is an excellent move for your boba tea business.

However, TikTok advertising is still a bit of a mystery to many, especially for businesses that have no to little experience with online or social media ads. If you are a bit skeptical about TikTok ads and the platform itself, you’ll be glad to know that you are one of the many who do. But don't you think it's time to give it a try, considering the rising number of users who are potential boba tea customers?

This article features the basic ways you can utilize this social media platform for your boba tea business, including a few recommendations from industry experts. Here are the steps to using TikTok to advertise your boba tea business:


#1 Sign Up and Create A TikTok Business Manager Account

The first step is to create a TikTok ad account. A personal account won’t do; you would need a separate login to create ads. 

When you sign up for a business manager account, provide basic and complete information about your boba tea business. Once your business manager account is confirmed, you can start using the platform for ads.


#2 Create A Campaign

Create your first TikTok ad campaign and give it a descriptive name. Then, choose between the objectives available – Awareness, Consideration, and Conversions.

Choose Awareness if your goal is to drive reach and visibility to your boba tea business. To grow your following, get more likes, and increase engagement via website traffic, video views, and app installation, choose Consideration. Finally, if your ad goal is to drive conversions, Corresponding should be your objective. You would need to have the TikTok pixel installed with this objective for you to properly track and measure your ads’ success.

Newly-opened boba tea businesses would need to grow exposure online and brand recognition, so the best objective to choose for now is Awareness.

As for the ad budget, there are two options – a daily budget or a lifetime budget. But no matter which option you choose, the minimum amount for advertising is $50.


#3 Create Ad Groups And Select Ad Placements

Once you determine your ad objective, you can choose to run the TikTok ads on one or more properties, including apps that are part of the TikTok network like Pangle and BuzzVideo.

For first-timers, auto-placement is the recommended option, which will allow TikTok to optimize and test different combinations based on the objectives. On the other hand, advanced users can select the placements they prefer to run the ads with the fully manual option.

As for the ad groups, the options available include age and gender, location, device, behavior, and interest targeting.

Invest your time and effort in creating targeted audiences to make your ads more effective. Being too general for the purpose of reaching more users may not give you rewarding results.


#4 Choose the Ad Type of Your Choice

There are various ad types on TikTok, but some may be too costly for smaller brands. At the moment, here are the available types:

  • In-feed Ads - These ads appear within the feed on the user’s “For You Page,” and they look organic compared to other formats. Users can also interact with these ads by liking, sharing, and posting comments.
  • Spark Ads - These are a type of native ad format that uses existing posts and turns them into ads, which is very similar to Facebook and Instagram ads. Brands have the option to use their own organic posts or ones made by content creators. The views, comments, likes, shares, and follows are all attributed to the organic post. 
  • Brand Takeover Ads - This type is recommended for brands who want to make an impression on users because they are effective visually and very memorable. They show up as soon as a user opens the app and goes to a category with a short full-screen video that will run for three to five seconds. However, brand takeover ads may be a bit too costly for small businesses, as the minimum budget is $50,000.
  • TopView Ads - These ads also show at the top of the user feed, very much like Brand Takeover ads, and also appear on full-screen. TopView ads run for up to a minute long and can boost brand awareness and trigger interactions.
  • Hashtag Challenge - This ad type can promote awareness and engagement. It also allows TikTok users to create content aligned with a brand’s products or services and even values. The Hashtag Challenge ads appear at the top of the discovery page, leading to a landing page of a collection of videos from the same challenge.
  • Branded Effects - These ads allow brands to make their own stickers, lenses, and effects that users can share and engage with the brand using TikTok’s AR. These ads can last up to ten days.
  • Search Ads -  TikTok has recently started testing search ads which are video ads with a “sponsored” label that appear within the users’ search results.


The takeaway

TikTok is one of the social media channels with a strong sense of community. We can attribute this to the majority of young users that resonate with and respond well to authentic content. Most users would want to engage with brands that share the same values with them and provide honesty and authenticity.

With that said, advertising content that is natural, informative, and adds value should be the priority for your boba tea business ads. A good TikTok ad example is one with a behind-the-scenes theme where you showcase your newly-bought flavored syrups from a boba supply store that you will use to create a special line of drinks. Teasers of limited-edition beverages are also pretty effective, as they increase users' anticipation for the new products.

By following the best practices and recommendations and researching more about TikTok advertising, you can quickly edge off your competitors. TikTok is a new advertising landscape for most brands – be one of the first boba tea businesses to utilize it correctly.



  • Pew Research
  • Search Engine Journal
  • Statista
  • TikTok



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