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TikTok Ads for Catering Services – The Complete Guide on How To Get More Customers for Catering Businesses Through TikTok Advertising

Advertising your business through TikTok ads is the best way to promote your catering business. Creating TikTok ads for catering services will help promote your catering business to a wide audience and it will give you a competitive advantage over your local competitors. Using Tiktok Ads will also help create engagement and as a result, it will boost brand visibility and drive more leads to your catering business, bringing you more new customers.

1. Why TikTok Ads for Catering Services?

TikTok is one of the most popular social media platforms to date, hence why so many businesses have now transitioned to promote their business through TikTok Ads. This is also because promoting on TikTok has allowed businesses to see how implementing a full-funnel campaign on the app has had a strong positive impact on their performance outcomes based on their brand ads, such as an increase in brand awareness, traffic, and conversions.

TikTok ads are also more affordable than its competitors, and you can drive sales to your business by posting videos about your catering services, which will boost online visibility and create engagement. Advertising your catering business on TikTok is not a complicated process, and you can customize your ads to target specific audiences.

1.1 The different types of TikTok Ads:

  • Topview Ads is TikTok’s most premium ad format. It’s similar to pay-per-click, however, you can only use this type of ad when a TikTok sales representative also works with you on these ads.
  • In-feed Ads are usually created with TikTok Ads Manager and typically include a prominent CTA button.
  • Spark Ads are great for boosting organic content, especially when the content has been created by a content creator or influencer as part of a collaboration, talking about your catering business, and positive feedback.
  • TikTok Image Ads are still images that should include the name of your catering business.
  • Playable Ads create engagement through mini-games.
  • Shopping Ads are available to all TikTok shops and simplify the shopping experience by using the main functions of video shopping ads, catalog listing ads, and live shopping ads. This is great for businesses that want users to discover their products and can drive traffic towards a website.

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2. TikTok Business Account

Before creating your TikTok ads campaign, first create a TikTok account, by downloading the app from the Google Play store, or Apple store. You can also “Sign up” using TikTok’s desktop website.

how to sign up for tiktok account to create tiktok ads for catering services

When you are logged in, go to your account settings, then “Switch to Business Account”.

switching to business account for tiktok campaign

Once you are done creating your TikTok account and switching it into a business account, access TikTok Ads Manager to link your TikTok account and create your campaign.

Tiktok manager for businesses

Select “Log in with TikTok”.

login to tiktok for business account

Authorize” to be able to use TikTok for Business.

authorize business account for tiktok

Check the box to agree to TikTok’s commercial terms of service and read TikTok’s business privacy policy.

welcome to tiktok business and confirm

Then, enter your catering business industry details before clicking “Continue“.

enter business and industry details for campaign

Lastly, select “Manual Payment” as your payment method and you are done creating your TikTok business account.

setting up billing settings for tiktok business account

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3. Create Your TikTok Ads Campaign for Catering Services

Now that you are done creating your TikTok account and authorizing it for TikTok business, select “Campaign“, then click “Create” to start creating your TikTok ads for catering services.

creating first campaign on tiktok manager dashboard

Select “Custom Mode” for your campaign settings. This will allow you more control over your campaign.

selecting custom mode on tiktok business for account campaign

3.1 Campaign Settings

Campaign settings are where you can choose your advertising objective, such as app promotion if you want to encourage more people to download a newly launched app or website conversions if you want to drive traffic to your catering website. Since we want to target getting more new customers for your catering business, select “Lead Generation“.

selecting lead generation option as objective for tiktok campaign

Next, enter your campaign name. You can use “Catering Business Services” as your campaign name, or you can simply enter the name of your business.

adding campaign name to campaign settings on tiktok

You will then need to enter your ad group name, such as “Catering Services”.

entering group name for campaign on tiktok

Choose “Instant Form” as your optimization location. This will allow you to collect leads directly through your TikTok ads for catering services. We only recommend choosing the website option if your advertising objective is to drive traffic to your catering site.

optimization location settings using instant for for tiktok

Enable all your ad placement options, including “search results”, “user comment”, “video download” and “video sharing”. These settings will help encourage more impressions and conversions from your TikTok ads for catering services.

placement settings for tiktok campaign

In your audience targeting settings, select “All” for your gender and age settings, then focus on your demographics by entering the locations you want your TikTok ads to target. For more targetted location settings, click on “Bulk upload“.

audience targeting for tiktok campaign

Then enter the specific locations you want to target. This will enable your TikTok ads to show up to users within your chosen locations when they search “catering services near me”. Keep in mind that you should only target the locations your catering business can travel to.

bulk location settings for tiktok campaign

Select the language you want your TikTok ads for catering services to appear in. If you want your ads to appear in a different language, such as Spanish, you will need to create a new campaign.

english language settings for tiktok campaign

Select “All” for the following settings, just like in the example below. This ensures that your TikTok ads will be available on both Android and iOS devices.

device settings for tiktok campaign

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3.2 Budget and Schedule

As we mentioned, advertising on TikTok is an affordable way to promote your business in comparison to using other platforms. For your TikTok ads for catering services, we recommend starting with a daily budget of $40. We also recommend not to start with a daily budget amount that is too low, since it can cause your TikTok ads to produce slow results, and it can risk your ads not getting enough leads.

In your dayparting settings, you can choose to run your ads “All Day” or choose “Select specific time” and run your ads during your business days and hours, so your catering business can call any leads within the minute.

budget and schedule settings for tiktok campaign

3.3 Bidding and Optimization

Leave your Target CPA settings as it is, so your campaign can focus on maximizing the number of leads it can get, based on your daily budget.

bidding and optimization with target CPA setting on tiktok campaign setup

4. Ad Text for TikTok Ads for Catering Services

Now we can start creating the ad itself. First, enter your ad name, for example, “Wedding Catering Service”.

creative name for campaign promoting wedding catering services

Then, create a custom identity. Users on TikTok will identify your brand with this name, so enter your catering business name or create a custom identity, such as “@CateringDelights”.

creating custom identity for catering business using catering delights name

Next, upload your video ad by clicking on “+Upload” or “+From library” if downloading from your smartphone. You can also select “+Create”  which means you will need to film your TikTok ad video at that specific moment, although we strongly suggest having a video ready to post so you can optimize your video with editing and scripting to help bring you more customers.

uploading creatives or video to tiktok campaign

Enter your ad text. This could be a short description of what the video is about or what it is offering to its viewers. Make sure your ad text is using the right keywords, so it grabs the attention of your target audience and encourages a conversion action.

An ad text you could use for your TikTok Ads for catering services could be “Experience delicious Catering Delights on your wedding day with our Wedding Catering Package”. When adding your ad text, you will be able to see a preview of what it will look like on TikTok, on the right side of your screen.

creative text for catering video campaign

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4.1 Call To Action Settings

A critical step that you must always include in your TikTok Ads for catering services is CTAs. This is the step that will help nurture and convert your leads into actual customers. You can choose between “Dynamic” and “Standard” CTA settings.

If you select “Dynamic“, it will show you the different CTA text options you can use for your ads.

call to action dynamic settings for tiktok campagin

Make sure to only check the text options that apply to your catering business.

cta text options for tiktok campaign

If you select “Standard“, it will only show that CTA text to users on TikTok, so select one that aligns with your TikTok ads for catering services, and one that will reinforce your ad text and encourage conversion, such as “Contact Us” or “Learn More”.

standard cta settings for tiktok campaign

4.2 Interactive Add-Ons

Interactive add-ons are a great way to encourage a conversion action from your target audience. This is because you can use this feature to highlight any important messages and promote exclusive TikTok promos that encourage users to take action. To use this feature, click on “+Create”.

create interactive add ons for tiktok campaign

Then choose the type of display card you want to include in your TikTok ads for catering services. If you want to promote an exclusive online offer like in the example below, enter the discount amount they can claim (15% off), the discount description (Limited Time Only), the call to action (Book Now), and the display time (5 seconds).

adding display card for tiktok discount offer of 15 %

4.3 Instant Form Settings

Instant forms or Instant pages is another feature you should to your TikTok ads for catering services. It can help your target audience learn more about your products and services, and this allows them to directly contact you or book an appointment with you.

To add an instant form, select “+Create“.

create an instant form for tiktok campaigns

Then, choose “Classic Form” as your instant page settings.

classic form option for tiktok campaign

Enter the name of the classic form and language, and select “More Volume” as your form type. This will help your TikTok ads for catering services focus on getting more new leads. If you are interested in selecting “Higher Intent”, we recommend using Google Ads for Catering Companies instead of TikTok Ads because Google Ads is the platform that costs more per click but will get you higher quality leads.

classic form volume settings for tiktok campaign

Keep your introduction settings disabled, then move to the next section.

introduction settings for tiktok campaign

You will need to enter the reason why you are collecting personal information under the purpose statement to be able to use instant forms in your TikTok ads for catering services. Then, choose the information you will need from your leads, such as name, email, and phone number.

purpose statement settings using name email and phone number

You can also choose to add custom questions, like multiple-choice questions, appointment scheduling, and conditional answer, to have a better understanding of your target audience’s needs from your catering business. You could include a “Short Answer” custom question, for example, for how many people you need the catering for or any specific food preferences.

custom questions settings for tiktok campaign on instant form

Aside from the purpose statement, you also need to provide your privacy policy details, such as your “Company Name” and your “Privacy policy link”.

privacy policy settings for tiktok campaign

Lastly, enter your thank you screen details. Include a headline such as “Thank you for your response” and then enter a description that will encourage a conversion action, for example, “Tap the button below to learn more about our catering services and “Get A Free Estimate” for your wedding day!”.

Include a button text, which should support the text in the description, like “Get Free Estimate”, and make sure that the website URL is the landing page for the free estimate offer.

thank you screen in instant page settings for catering business campaign

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4.4 Payment Settings

Since we selected “Manual Payment” as our payment method during the billing information setup, you will need to enter a balance amount into your account.

adding a balance of 40 usd for tiktok campaign

Next, choose your payment method and enter the details required.

choosing your billing payment method on tiktok campaign

Lastly, fill out the business registration form with all the details of your catering business, and then you’re done! Congratulations!

company registration for tiktok campaign

5. What makes an effective TikTok Video Ad?

According to TikTok, the social media platform can generate business impact across several critical dimensions such as ROAS (return on ad spend), sales efficiency, incremental sales, and offline sales. One of the most crucial elements to experience success through TikTok Ads for catering services and unlock ad effectiveness is the creative.

An effective TikTok Video Ad should be able to grab the attention of your target audience within 3 seconds to avoid being scrolled down. You want your TikTok video ad to be visually entertaining, engaging, and informative to help drive leads for your catering service business.

The beauty of using TikTok as your advertising platform is that you don’t need expensive and professional equipment to film your videos. Filming with your smartphone is more than good enough, as long as the content itself isn’t blurry and has good-quality audio. When you film your video, make sure it looks and feels authentic, and showcase the benefits of your catering service business, for example, highlighting your best sellers, or being able to offer customizable dishes due to a customer’s preferences or allergies.

5.1 Key elements for an effective TikTok Video Ad

There are a few key elements you will want to consider before filming your video and while you edit your content. These elements will help your TikTok ads for catering services have an effective copy that targets the right keywords, and it will also help make your video ads engaging and entertaining for your target audience.

  • Add background music.
  • Use auto-captions on the video.
  • Include a title in the video cover.
  • Include a compelling Call to Action.
  • Your video resolution should at least be 720p.
  • Abide by TikTok’s image and video specs.
  • Center all important elements in your video.
  • Switch your ads every 7 days to avoid ad fatigue.
  • Capture the attention of the viewer in the first 3 seconds.
  • Avoid creating a video ad longer than 34 seconds.
  • Include a good copy in your description.
  • Use TikTok Creative Center to discover trending keywords, top hashtags, and viral music.
  • Prioritize vertical videos (Don’t risk your ads getting cut off at the margins).

6. TikTok Video Examples for Catering Services

Here is an example of a TikTok video from a catering business showcasing the service they were able to provide for a birthday celebration. It uses background music, different editing styles, and different camera angles. It also includes a text at the beginning of the video to highlight what the catering service was for and has an open-ended question in the caption to encourage interaction and engagement from its followers.


What would you change? Lovely table set up for sabina’s 30th #fyp #fyp #foodtiktok #catering

♬ original sound – Sickickmusic

This second example is another catering service video, but this time it focuses on highlighting one of its best-selling products, and how they keep it fresh. It also uses key elements to make the video effective, such as a voice-over and background music, it feels authentic, it’s a high-resolution video, and follows TikTok’s video specs. It’s a video that was made to answer a common question from its followers, by answering it with “Most popular salad you say? Let me show you!”.


One of our best selling catering salads #cassandras #westernsydney #cafe #sydneycatering

♬ Boy’s a liar Pt. 2 – PinkPantheress & Ice Spice

7. Best Practices for TikTok Ads for Catering Services

Here are some of the best practices you can implement to your TikTok ads for catering services, to fully optimize your ads and improve performance and results.

7.1 Ad Groups

Ad groups are part of a 3 layered organized structure, which also involves the TikTok Campaign and the TikTok Ad itself. Create multiple ad groups that are customized with different target audiences and objectives, such as demographics, ad spending, ad placement, and target bids. This way you can switch your ads every day to avoid ad fatigue, and it will help you find out which ad groups are performing better than others and why, by analyzing your KPIs so that you can optimize them.

Additionally, creating multiple ad groups will help drive more traffic to your catering business. For example, you could have an ad group for “bridal catering”, and another for “corporate catering” or “cocktail hour catering”.

7.2 Plan Your Content

Planning your video content before filming your video ads will greatly help you create effective TikTok ads for your catering business, and avoid wasted time and effort. Part of your planning phase should include the scripting of your videos, the creative vision or approach, and keyword research.

Knowing exactly how you want your videos to be executed or how you want them to look when the video is done, will help you incorporate key elements during the editing phase that will help make it an effective video ad.

Your keyword research should also help you better understand what your target audience is actively searching for, like “catering services for weddings” or “birthday catering package”. Keyword research will also help you create effective hooks to use at the beginning of your videos to grab the attention of your target audience within 3 seconds, and it will help with the ad scripting process. Consider writing short scripts that also address the user’s problems and solutions, or trigger a personal response, which can help avoid your TikTok ads being scrolled down, and losing the interest of potential new customers.

Don’t stop with the ad script only. Also use these keywords in your captions, video text, hashtags, and even in the title of your TikTok video ad, supported with trending sounds that you can find using the TikTok Creative Center page. It will help support your ad efforts by attracting and retaining the attention of viewers, and encourage some form of engagement from your viewers.

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7.3 Video Footage and Editing

As we mentioned earlier, an effective TikTok video ad can be filmed with your smartphone and doesn’t need to be filmed with professional equipment. Simply follow TikTok’s guidelines, such as the image and video specs and the minimum quality resolution.

When filming your video ads, showcase your services as a catering business, such as your best sellers, the quality control done to deliver your products, the different services you can provide, and how your business complies with FDA regulations. Additionally, you can film content showcasing how your business started, before and after results from your catering services, and you can include testimonials from previous customers who were very happy with your services.

You will want your videos to leave a lasting impression on your target audience, so users of the app will remember your catering business, and are encouraged to engage with your TikTok ads by commenting, liking, sharing, saving, or making a conversion action. This serves as an opportunity for these users who engaged in your ads to become high-quality leads, bringing your catering business more new customers. Make sure your video footage is supported with editing techniques, transitions, music, text, captions, and descriptions including hashtags.

7.4 Collaborate with Creators

Collaborating with creators is a great way to boost your catering business exposure and brand credibility. You will be able to reach a different target audience specific to that influencer’s following, which in turn can increase your social media following and allow more opportunities for conversions and sales. Videos created by content creators or influencers can also be used as Spark Ads for your catering business, benefiting both your business and the creator.

Consider the following when collaborating with content creators:

  • You can reach out to UGC content creators to promote specific products from your catering business.
  • Develop a detailed campaign plan.
  • Identify and reach out to the right creators.
  • Give the creator artistic freedom but give guidelines on what you want to see and what they can’t do.
  • Set KPIs or Key Performance Indicators.

7.5 Email Sequences

Choose to include email sequencing as part of your marketing strategy to help with your TikTok Ad efforts. These emails will help promote your catering business and increase customer retention and engagement inquiries. You can send these automated emails when your target audience fills up the instant form from your TikTok ads for catering services, and these could also offer discounted promotions to help drive more traffic to your website and finish the conversion journey.

The email sequences you can choose could be onboarding emails, feedback emails, and re-engagement emails, but we strongly recommend using the following instead:

  • Welcome email sequences allow you to directly communicate with new subscribers by welcoming them and introducing your catering services.
  • Lead nurturing email sequences will help nurture and convert your leads into paying customers with the help of automation.
  • Cross-sell email sequences are great to use when you want to market any other products or services for your customers, that may be more expensive. For example, a customer could be interested in your bridal catering after having a positive experience with your catering during the proposal or engagement party.

7.6 Customer Relationship Management Process

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is an essential process that you must have when running TikTok Ad campaigns. Any calls coming from your TikTok Ads for catering services will have to be listened to and managed by your sales or receptionist. You will need to hold them accountable for these calls every day so that you can track and audit how fast these leads are called back. It’s important to note that these leads need to be called within the minute, to avoid losing potential new customers.

If your catering business does not have a CRM process, consider Google Ads for Catering Companies instead. Using this digital marketing tool will help you target high-intent users, who are actively searching for specific catering services. This also means that they are higher-quality leads.

We have helped more than 1,000 clients with Google Ads and TikTok Ads, so if you don’t have a CRM process to support your TikTok Ad efforts for your catering business, check 0ut we’ve helped our clients succeed with Google Ads on YoYoFuMedia’s page.

8. Key Takeaways

  • TikTok Ads is great for your business if you want a more affordable way to promote your catering services.
  • Include key elements discussed in this blog post for your TikTok Video Ads.
  • Prioritize creating ads that will grab the attention of users within 3 seconds.
  • Collaborate with influencers or content creators to increase your audience reach and give you more sales.
  • Implement some of the best practices discussed in this article to make your TikTok Ads more effective.
  • Having a CRM process is essential to nurture and convert leads into customers.

If you don’t think that you will have the time to manage and optimize your TikTok ads for catering services, our team of friendly experts can help! Book a free consultation with us so we can focus on bringing you new customers with TikTok Ads, while you focus on providing the best catering services for your customers.

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