TikTok launches ‘Pulse Premiere’ ad slot with top publishers to offer brand-safe advertising space

TikTok is stepping up its game in the advertising industry by partnering with top publishers like NBCU, Condé Nast, DotDash Meredith, and BuzzFeed, among others, to attract more premium ad dollars. In a move to offer a brand-safe environment, TikTok announced at the recent NewFronts a new premium ad product called “Pulse Premiere,” which will allow marketers to position their brand ads directly after TikTok’s publisher and media partners’ content in over a dozen categories. The program provides a brand-safe space within TikTok’s social video network by guaranteeing that ads will only run alongside “suitable TikToks” from premium publishers.

TikTok’s move could address potential concerns over ad placement amid user-generated content that could lead to disruptions in ad revenue, similar to issues faced by YouTube in the past due to offensive and obscene content ranging from hate speech to child safety issues. Pulse Premiere provides marketers with an assurance of ad placement, as the content will run only alongside trusted publishers. In addition to NBCU, Condé Nast, DotDash Meredith, and BuzzFeed, TikTok is partnering with Hearst Magazines, Major League Soccer, UFC, Vox Media, and WWE on the new program.

Furthermore, the new ad slots will help publishers generate increased revenue from their TikTok investments through a revenue-sharing agreement. However, TikTok declined to share how much the new Pulse Premiere ad placements would cost or detail the revenue share for participating publishers.

Pulse Premiere is built off TikTok’s initial Pulse offering launched last year, which allowed marketers to place their ads next to the top 4% of content on the platform. TikTok users are 2.6x more likely to interact with a Pulse ad compared to a comparable ad on another video platform, and Pulse campaigns have increased brand recall by +9.8% on average and awareness by +6.8%. Nonetheless, some creators have reported extremely low earnings from Pulse, with revenue not even exceeding $5 in some cases. In response, TikTok offers other monetization tools like livestream gifting, subscriptions, and a creator fund, though the latter has also been criticized for paying out low amounts.

Pulse Premiere will roll out to US advertisers in the second half of the year, with other markets to follow. The new ad product will provide an opportunity for marketers to tie their campaigns to tentpole events through Pulse Premiere, while publishers generate increased revenue from their TikTok investments. Pam Drucker Mann, Global Chief Revenue Officer & President, U.S. Revenue & APAC at Condé Nast, praised TikTok as a valuable partner that provides a variety of tools to ensure that their brands are driving conversations on the platform. In her words, “Our advertisers know that culture is the new KPI, and the Pulse Premiere solution finally enables clients to match media buying with how consumers are consuming our brands, like Vogue, GQ, and Vanity Fair, on TikTok.”

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