Hello Seller Community!
Looking to learn from business owners like yourself? I'm thrilled to introduce a new pilot event series: Super Seller "Ask Me Anythings (AMAs)."
Super Seller AMAs are “Ask Me Anything” style forum discussions where you can ask real-life business owners and experts about their strategy and lived experiences. Each event will feature a different Square Super Seller and have an accompanying theme where they're knowledgeable. On Tuesday, February 7, we focused on TikTok and social media with Sugar Lab Bake Shop.📱
Meet Ali, the biologist-turned-owner of Sugar Lab Bake Shop (@sugarlab in the Seller Community). Ali and her mother have been in business since April 2012. They've found success promoting and managing their business marketing on TikTok over the last few years — with multiple viral posts reaching millions of viewers! Learn more about how they started their business here. 🧪🍰
Ali shared her experience and shared her tips for getting started, maintaining relationships, and social media strategy.
Please note that Sugar Lab Bake Shop is not an employee or consultant of Square. The information they provide solely reflects their views and is not endorsed by Square. This Q&A is limited in scope and is only intended as a high-level overview of the topics discussed.
Seller Community Manager | Square, Inc.
Find step-by-step help in our Support Center
Seller Community Events
This is so exciting!! We LOVE Ali! We use @sugarlab for all sorts of fun seasonal cookies and treats and she always makes our vision come true!! Will definitely be tuning in to watch this! Yay Ali for being the first Super Seller AMA!!!!
Aww shucks! Answers will be typed and then responded to on the 7th but I'm currently trying to figure out the easiest and most helpful way to do a Live video content that could be posted later too.
Is there a way we can do collaborative work with you to promote our businesses and maybe even a brick and mortar Collab to bring @sugarlab to my community? I'm sure integrating @sugarlab in my Cafe and new TikTok account would help me bring in a youthful crowd. I'm just wondering what it would take for me to convince you?
Kerrville Health Food Store/Carrot Patch Cafe
141 West Water St., Kerrville, Tx 78028
Hi again @Memors!
Collaborations can be great! You want to make sure that the collaboration makes sense. Do you have similar target audiences? Are you local to each other? Why would someone’s community be interested in the other business? Does it make sense for both businesses?
Answering this in general terms of course. Feel free to reach out to me directly about any collaborations.
This is great info @Lovewell about Ali, just wanted to add up that you can also leverage TikTok to spread love about your mobile app. By this, you can not only make sure your customers are aware of your app and its features, but you can also create a connection with them through your branded app. This connection can help build brand loyalty. As a small business owner, it’s important to stay ahead of the curve and make sure your customers are able to access your products and services quickly and easily. One of the best ways to do this is by having a mobile app that allows ordering.
I just use my phone! I have an iPhone 13 Pro. It’s great because I always have it on me and I don’t need to think about carrying something else. I haven’t posted with any specific schedule yet; usually I’m posting after my kids go to bed since most of my videos are voice-overs.
This is incredible...one day when my business really starts scaling I hope to be featured...that would be a big accomplishment for me. In the meantime, congrats to Ali and her mother. I have a couple questions:
1. What are the best time to post to TikTok? I know it can be based off location but there has to be a general rule of thumb...what hashtags do you use use (if any)?
2. Can you auto post to TikTok?
3. How do set up your content calendar to have time to create and post these viral sensations?
1. I haven’t really found a schedule really for TikTok. That’s the beauty of the algorithm; it’s not chronological. I continue to get comments and interactions on videos long after they’ve been posted. The only thing I’ve really tracked for TikTok time wise is Lives. I find I have better reach when I’m Live later in the evening.
2. I actually looked this one up! You can schedule TikToks, but you have to do it from a desktop. There isn’t a way to schedule it from your phone. A little annoying but I guess that’s a trade off for saving some time.
3. In terms of virality, you can’t ever really plan for them - they just happen. And sometimes it’s the most random video that does. The beauty (and pain) of TikTok! Finding the time; well that’s something I’m still working on. Adding it to my to-do list is helpful. I aim for posting once a day, but sometimes it’s a little more spread out.
I had a business account for a short while and find an influencer account gets more views.
Co-Owner Amityville Apothecary
Instagram | TikTok @AmityvilleApothecary
Hey @JUYBoutique20 and @Dzignermom!
It seems there are some more analytics with a business account versus a personal account. I haven’t run into any instance where I was wishing I had different data though. Technically speaking, you have to use the business account for commercial purposes. If you don’t plan to use music to specifically promote your products, then you’re probably ok. Although, don’t come at me for any legality with that. 😛
What kind of apps do you use if any to enable simultaneous posting on Tic Toc and across the SM platforms, instagram, FB etc
Also we have found using SM for our business very time intensive with little tangible commercial return for our effort. Do you find SM for your business delivers a real measurable uplift in sales or just a nice to have allowing you to communicate with your followers what you have are doing and that you are still trading?
I really need to find out if I should keep putting the effort in or direct resource to areas of the budiness we know can deliver commercially.
Thank you 😊
Hi Phillip! You are totally right that posting on SM one by one is very time consuming and doesn't have a clear return. Many businesses have given me feedback that SMS can be an even more effective channel because it is more direct to your loyal customers. But the following is key to get more results from SMS:
1. Your SMS must be automated. If you send them one by one, it is hard to know when to send them or what to say. Automated SMS lets you stay connected to your customers without having to keep working on it, like with social media.
2. It is critical to give 100% of your customers an easy way to give you their phone to get SMS marketing from you. SMS is a numbers game so the more phones you have the better. A common way to easily get phones from every guest is with self-ordering kiosks. With SM, it is hard to convert all your customers to follow you since the process isn't integrated to your ordering workflow.
3. SMS is most effective when paired with push notifications. This way customers get repeat exposure to your message on the most valuable piece of real estate your brand can get: their mobile phones! Feel free to check out the Orda mobile app builder for Square other tips on different marketing channels that may be helpful for you!
I haven’t found an app that lets me post to all social media platforms at the same time. Most of my content is time lapses of cakes/cookies so I edit the video and then post separately to TikTok and Instagram. Those are the two main platforms that we use. In the past, Instagram has definitely been good for conversion. It still is good, but not like it was. TikTok has allowed me to launch shipping and reach a wider audience. Surprisingly, I still do have local followers that found us on TikTok. I wasn’t planning on that as much, so it was a nice thing to start hearing.
Question: What type of business do you have? Excuse me for butting into the conversation but SM is an amazing way to position yourself as the expert in your field or area. You are reaching customers for free. I know it is incredibly intimidating at first- but the best way to get ideas about what types of content you should be creating is to consume the content of businesses like yours. It will give you an understand of what works and what doesn't, and give you inspiration for what you can post.
What I like to do is create in batches.. spend an hour and just shoot a bunch of different content and draft them.
I also think it's important to understand the style of TikTok versus Instagram- the content that does well on these platforms are not the same....
If you want to check our biz out in Insta or TikTok it's @amityvilleapothecary on both. We have 207k followers on TT and 17K on Insta,
Co-Owner Amityville Apothecary
Instagram | TikTok @AmityvilleApothecary