How to use TikTok ads for your charity

by Richenda Vermeulen
October 24, 2022

TikTok. The latest platform grabbing everyone’s attention, including a growing number of charities.

While TikTok might not be for every not-for-profit (see here for our write-up on whether your charity should consider it), it should be one of your key considerations if you’re trying to reach and connect with a younger audience.

What many people don’t realise is how groundbreaking the tech behind TikTok really is. By using AI and machine learning, it’s revolutionising how content is served up to its users. That’s why it’s been embraced by so many and why Mark Zuckerberg is rethinking Facebook’s NewsFeed.

With the average CPM on TikTok being $3-$6 per 1,000 views (compared to $14 per 1,000 views on Facebook), it has proven to be an incredibly cost-effective way to reach and engage younger donors during fundraising campaigns.

Stepping onto a new platform can be daunting, but we’re here to help. 

Here are a few quick tips for advertising on TikTok. 

1. Try TikTok’s Creative Centre Platform

This tool provides exactly the kind of information you need to create top-performing content and ads. 

It shares details on what sort of ads and campaign objectives are performing well across industries. You can even look up trending hashtags, top-performing ads, influencers and more. 

You can use filters to search for top-performing ads in the Australian charity sector by using a conversion objective in the News & Entertainment> Charity & Public Welfare industry in Australia (see below). If you change the objective, you'll get different results. This is a great way to see what's working and get some creative inspiration. Access top ads here.

2. Install the TikTok Pixel

Much like Facebook, TikTok has its own pixel so you can track your ad performance and conversion. It can also help you create custom and look-a-like audiences so you can drive your ad's success and reach as many people as possible. Even if you aren't ready to experiment with ads yet, downloading the pixel early can ensure that you have better targeting and ad optimisation right from the beginning. It really is a powerful tool. 

3. Choose how you want to engage

Despite there being limited opportunities to fundraise with TikTok, there are many ways to advertise and raise awareness around your cause.

TikTok really is packed with a diverse range of content — everything from dance challenges to deep dives into astrophysics. So feel free to do what’s right for your organisation. Maybe that’s jumping on the latest trend or giving a behind-the-scenes look at the issues your org is trying to solve. 

And remember to create creative specifically designed for TikTok, rather than repurposing other video creative. TikTok operates in a unique way, and your creative and content should embrace a user-generated look and feel. Don’t be afraid to use TikTok to test, test and test again! 

4. Make the most of your budget.

Remember we mentioned TikTok’s snazzy AI-backed algorithm? It allows TikTok to provide some really nuanced targeting options. You can get in front of just the right people to help you promote your cause. It makes for some low-cost ads (averaging around $3-$5) that reap high rewards. 

Remember, Facebook’s can be as high as $30 and Facebook has actually removed a lot of targeting options.


TikTok is extremely overlooked by charities because so many of them just don’t have the time and resources to add another platform to the mix. But there’s an opportunity if you can get it right, so allocate some time and budget to experiment with TikTok in your next media plan. While there may not be a whole lot of pre-existing data available for the sector, this is your chance to connect with young donors hungry for cause-related content.