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American Express launches TikTok accelerator for small businesses

American Express launches TikTok accelerator for small businesses

American Express is partnering with TikTok to help small business owners reach a new generation of shoppers on the viral video platform.

Running throughout the holiday season, the American Express #ShopSmall Accelerator will include an offer for eligible small business owners to earn a $100 TikTok advertising credit in return for buying $50 in TikTok ads. In addition, small business owners will be given access to tools and resources to think like TikTok creators, including a tutorial at AmericanExpress.com/ShopSmallAccelerator on how their businesses can stand out on the platform.

Lifestyle creators will teach small business owners how to use TikTok as a search engine; leverage sounds, trends, hashtags and communities; and how to drive engagement with users. To help small businesses get discovered by new audiences, American Express has also partnered with musical artist Chlöe Bailey to create a “Shop Small Soundtrack,” which TikTok users can add to their content.

Elizabeth Rutledge, chief marketing officer, American Express, says: “The #ShopSmall Accelerator will help give small merchants the tools they need to reach the next generation of consumers on TikTok, where our Shop Small Impact Study found that 67% of Gen Z users have shopped from a small business that was displayed on their For You Page.”

Earlier this year NatWest launched a campaign on the video app promoting its free Business Builder online toolkit, which offers digital and event-based learning modules covering things such as sustainability, business strategy and mindset.

TikTok's influence on the Gen Z cohort is well documented. Recent research from the UK's Current Account Switch Service found that that 58% of 18 to 14 year olds follow TikTok influencers who talk about budgeting, money, or personal finance, with many of them believing that influencers on the app provide better advice than traditional media.

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