Social Made Me Buy It


In 2023, “TikTok Made Me Buy It” is the new “As Seen on TV”. For years, brands have used social platforms to generate influence and FOMO to drive users to their websites with the goal of a purchase but now, social platforms themselves are full-blown e-commerce sites.

According to Tech Report, social media sales will total $1.298 billion in 2023. See a sweater you like in your IG stories? Simply swipe up, and buy it right away. That full-length perfect selfie mirror following you for days? Simply tap “shop now,” and it’s yours.

If you are a direct-to-consumer brand or have online retail in your marketing ecosystem, creating a shoppable feed on TikTok or Meta is a no-brainer. Plus, it’s free for brands to set up, save for commission fees lower than Amazon’s.

We asked a few TSLers what they’ve been influenced to buy on social. Here are their top picks.

💄 Jen

I was influenced to buy Ilia cosmetics on Instagram. It started with one of my favorite Instagrammers casually name-dropping the brand during their get-ready routine.

Then, I was shown a lot of sponsored stories + feed posts featuring a variety of people, direct to camera, getting ready and using Ilia products, all looking extremely gLoWy. I thought to myself: I must achieve that level of dewy. This platform-forward format with a diverse swath of people using their products is what hooked me. Plus, I simply swiped up and used Apple Pay to buy. Easy breezy.

👜 Cadence

There I was in the school pick-up line, minding my own business, scrolling my stories when I was suddenly served an ad for a bag. Did I need a new bag? No. But the ad was from an unknown-to-me brand and the visual was so striking that I immediately clicked Buy Now, desperate to know more–specifically if it was within my budget. Not only was it in my budget, it. was. on. sale. I clicked add to cart, used Apple Pay, and smugly put my phone away as my kindergartner climbed in the car.

From serve to purchase the entire consumer journey lasted 60 seconds and, what’s more, the bag shipped free and was on my doorstep a mere 24 hours later. The bag is perfect. I’m impressed at how well ROTUNDA targeted me it was truly a masterclass in the right time, right place, and right person.

📺 Dan

It’s wild how ads can feel eerily spot-on. When my in-laws scored a new TV and surprised us with their old one, we were left scratching our heads about where to put it. Within 20 minutes of putting the new TV on the floor, against the wall, an ad popped up showcasing this incredibly cool and sleek TV stand.

The timing was uncanny – in less than two minutes, we were sold on the idea. It felt almost too on-the-nose, prompting us to joke about disconnecting the Wi-Fi, but really it’s a credit to some smart paid social marketers. Less than a week later we have a new spot to watch TV.

📓 Ben

I am a huge fan of journaling in any form and, I’m always looking for new and exciting ways to put my thoughts on a page. While scrolling through my For You Page, I came across an “honest review” of a product called The Shadow Work Journal. The creator started by saying she had the journal before it blew up and described it as being “perfect for beginners.”

This journal felt like the next medium for me. Since I could seamlessly use Apple Pay, not leaving room for me to doubt my purchase, I decided I wanted this journal and ordered it in about 30 seconds. About the length of one TikTok (because we all calculate time in TikToks, right?).

🔥 Social Shopping = Game Changer

Social shopping is taking over. If your product can be sold online and you aren’t yet set up on TikTok Shop or Instagram Shopping, today is a great day to integrate your e-commerce into the platforms and leverage the power of the social dollar.

Want help with that? HIT US UP.

Want to work with us? Contact us here.

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Background on The Social Lights
The Social Lights® is a social-first agency headquartered in Minneapolis that partners with clients to grow their business through strategy development, creative production, media buying, and social media management. Current clients include General Mills, Ecolab, Cargill, Caribou Coffee, Kwik Trip, Polaris and Massage Envy. The Social Lights was founded in 2011 and is a WBENC-Certified Women Business Enterprise. Learn more at The Social Lights.

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