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Social Media, Strategy

Why your health & wellbeing brand needs to be on TikTok (& how to succeed)

This platform presents the golden opportunity to connect with over 23 million people in the UK — and 1.6 billion globally.

With the knowledge that TikTokers have spent an average of 630 million hours watching videos involving doctors, followed by some 427 million hours watching nurses videos, it’s no surprise everyone is rushing to jump on the health TikTok bandwagon.

People are using TikTok like Google — as a search engine to discover health tips, hacks, insights and advice. In fact, it’s the biggest search engine for Gen Zers.

So, if you’re a health brand that’s failing to appear in TikTok search results or during those lengthier-than-intended For You Page scroll sessions, you’re missing out on brand awareness — big time. Is it time to shape up your TikTok strategy?

How TikTok is disrupting the health and wellness industry

It’s a big, broad space

The health communities on TikTok are hugely diverse, with many niches. It can encompass sports, outdoors, food and drink, mental health, menopause, diet, beauty, cosmetics, personal care and more. If it relates to humans and their wellbeing, it’s in.

It can be a lifesaver — literally

When it comes to healthcare, creators and healthcare professionals on the platform are helping to spread awareness of important, sometimes taboo topics.

They’re educating the platform’s massive audience on everything: sexual health, gut health, mental health, what to do if someone is having a seizure and even how to act if you need to perform CPR.

It has a young, engaged user base

TikTok is providing new ways to reach younger (and larger) audiences with bitesize, accessible information. We saw this during the pandemic; TikTok being used to tap into audiences that may not consume ‘traditional’ forms of media.

Remarkably, one third of Gen Zers trust TikTok more than doctors and the same amount consult TikTok for health information.

39 percent of 18-34 year olds — the largest audience on the app — say they’ve delayed asking a doctor about something embarrassing. Many, particularly in Gen Z, use social media to discuss illness. So, it might not even be too far-fetched to suggest that a TikTok a day could keep the doctor away.

It’s helping health brands to sell products

There’s real value in community recommendations, particularly for health and wellbeing brands wanting to boost their sales. 37% of TikTok users across the EU have bought a pharma product after seeing it on TikTok — 71% of these were unplanned purchases. 48% use TikTok for information gathering on product purchases.

One in three Gen Z consult TikTok for health information and wellbeing life hacks — skincare tips, supplements, routines… you name it. The platform is hugely relevant for wellbeing brands touting their wares and expertise.

And now, thanks to TikTok Shop, non-prescription health and wellness brands can utilise this relatively novel platform as a storefront.

A snapshot of #HealthTok

A dive into the #health hashtag on TikTok reveals that 54% are aged 18-24 years old. The gender split is also pretty even — 52.48% are female; 47.52% are male.

At the time of writing, trending hashtags related to #health over the past 120 days include:

  • #healthyliving

  • #healthyrecipes

  • #healthyhair

  • #healthyrelationships

  • #healthydigestion

  • #healthyproducts

  • #healthfacts

  • #healthgoals

Trending hashtags for the health industry, showing just how diverse it can be, include:

  • #dentistry

  • #halalcollagen

  • #vegansupplements

  • #vitamingummy

  • #fertilitycommunity

For an idea of what sort of content thrives on #health, the top-liked video is from a neuroscientist discussing mental health and three things she would not do in order to protect her brain.

TikTok content tactics & hooks for health and wellbeing brands

Lower-than-desired engagement on your health-related TikTok content can be a bitter pill to swallow. Get your strategy back on its feet with these content hacks and tactics from brands who are winning the race for views!


A great way to build authority and trust — you take common misconceptions and myths surrounding your type of product (and the challenges or conditions they relate to) and #debunk them using easy to understand, clear and concise advice or instruction.

Often this content focuses on the professional or representative for the brand starting with a statement like ‘you might think that this problem means xx, but really it’s…xxx’.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.

Easy-to-consume and straight to the point, users get a quick-fix clarification. When delivered by an expert or accredited professional, all the better for brand trust.

Fact sharing

A great way to ensure you leave your audience feeling informed or enlightened. Take crucial, easily-digestible information and present it as quick-view content. We’re talking hooks like ‘5 things you should know about/know if/when you have..’.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.

This sense of instant gratification is a strong way to build confidence and authority. Don’t focus forensically on sales; give insight for the greater good.

As always, it is important to provide any other trust signals you can, so if your brand rep is a doctor or certified professional, make this clear — help your content stand out from the rest with credible signals and signposts.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.

Reaction videos

This is a great way to tackle misinformation, while simultaneously becoming more of an authority in your space.

Often, this type of content will look like a ‘[insert health professional] reacts’ , as your brand stitches or duets some content that is contentious, misinformed or inaccurate. Or, it could be you explain why a certain thing is happening, rather than seeking to debunk anything.


Look back through comments on the videos you've shared — are there any questions being asked that you feel you can answer? Using the reply feature on TikTok to respond to FAQs helps your community feel heard, and is an endless source of inspiration for new video content you may not have considered before.

Audiences will naturally engage with content they feel is directed at them, so don’t be afraid to get into detail. Have fun if you can, but ultimately make the goal to be an informed authority on your subject.

Relatable content

Content that has the audience saying ‘me too’ or ‘this could be about me’ is one of the best ways to build a community. Think ‘when you’re experiencing…’ or ‘how people with X see/feel/hear/taste’ or ‘do you ever feel…’.

It’s often more shareable and humanises your brand, making it clear to consumers that you understand their needs, you know what they care about and you see their problems, challenges and interests.

This is also a great vehicle for taking on sometimes embarrassing and or taboo health discussions that people may fear seeking advice on.


The perfect poo doesn't exi- Yes it does! Next time you're on the loo, look before you flush 💩 #PooTaboo#GutHealth#Bristolstoolchart#Comedy

♬ original sound - Holland & Barrett - Holland & Barrett

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‘Must haves’

Think of this as your chance to really bring your consumers on board — let them know why your brand can help them. Consider content that says something like ‘if you suffer with this, you must try these’ or ‘products to try if you…’.

This content can be directly product related, or about health and wellness more generally. How does your product or service help?


3 must have skincare products for anti-aging & maintaining healthy, glowy, smooth skin #holytrinityskincare#smoothskin#skincaremusthaves

♬ original sound - Abbey Yung

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TikTok content examples & inspiration for health and wellness brands

As with every tag, trend, or movement, there are always some front-runners showing the rest how it’s done. Health and wellness is a competitive space, but these brands are nailing their TikTok strategy and feeding their consumers exactly what they need and want.


This period tracking app has more than carved a niche for itself with a mix of shame-reducing, taboo-taming, fun and relatable educational content.

They take a seemingly ‘everyday’ topic — especially one that comes with a side of embarrassment, fear or some challenges — and make people feel seen, heard and enlightened.

The brand uses several of the useful formats we mention above, such as ‘explained’ videos, taking common concerns or questions, using trending sounds and or filters and mythbusting to engage with audiences.

Any menstruating person is sure to be drawn in by this hands-on, often humorous approach. They make use of popular templates and filters, as well as relevant hashtags to help performance.

While TikTok is not quite Google just yet, the importance of making sure you consider the your content is optimised for TikTok’s search function cannot be understated.


Run by the British Red Cross, this account naturally benefits from that all-important built-in brand trust. However, not content to rest there, the team ensures the page stays relevant, current and keen to attract new users and audiences with its mix of celebrity and expert video stars.

@firstaidtoolkit are successfully boosting their audiences by bringing along those of the influencers — a smart move to ensure these important, educational snippets of information can reach as many people as possible.

The content covers everything from common issues such as how to stem nosebleeds, to key facts on use of defibrillators and what to do if someone is having a seizure. These videos also capitalise on the use of major hashtags to reach their audiences, such as the obvious #firstaid and #learnontiktok - the latter of which has a staggering 728 billion views.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.


As a product designed to aid immune health and therefore assist with a number of health conditions, these superfood blends can be added to drinks, smoothies and more. Naturally, this is a hugely competitive market and so their content has to really cut through the noise.

Rheal takes a hugely educational approach, which makes sense, as those not familiar with blends and superfoods may need advice on how to consume, how each type can benefit and why. They also allow access to their founders, for whom this is a personal journey and endeavour; this builds trust, interest and loyalty.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.

Who are THE health TikTok creators and what can we learn from them?

Naturally, a lot of the data we’ve mentioned above relates to the content of medical and health professionals dominating our TikTok views. This makes sense — we can have inherent trust and confidence in their content over, say, a brand that is selling.

However, that doesn’t mean that as a brand, you cannot learn from them and utilise some of their tactics to utilise on your own channels. has built a large following tackling the all-important routes to ultimate skin — something that has grown significantly in interest in recent years.

The skincare tag has 243 billion views, which tells us that audiences are clamouring for these insights... and who better to guide them through it? As well as being an accredited professional, which builds trust, her content is consistent visually, which draws the eye and makes her instantly recognisable in a busy feed.

She tackles everything from skin complaints, through to routines, what can impact skin and shares a variety of solutions to suit different audiences and budgets. Keeping her content inclusive like this is another positive trust signal and will encourage users to repeatedly engage.

As well as advice, she actively walks the audience through many of the suggestions and routines she's using to remove any concern or uncertainty about how to execute the ideas she mentions.


Having a baby can be a stressful and confusing time, so what better way to feel seen, heard and helped than having access to friendly, practical and professional advice when you're night-feed scrolling?

This comforting, simple hint-and-tip offering is great for time-poor parents and caregivers who need some out-of-hours ideas and support.


Dr Julie Smith is a psychologist and arguably one of TikTok’s most well-known health professionals. She breaks down lots of common worries, thought patterns, behaviours and triggers, examining them in an easy-to-digest way, offering helpful tools and advice to help manage them.

Personable and packed with tangible examples that help people label their feelings and emotions, she has created the ultimate safe-space while utilising fun and engaging content to help manage what can be serious thoughts and feelings.

Please enable cookies or click here to view the video on TikTok.

The benefit to professionals such as Dr Julie offering their advice and insights is it provides a pool of credible, science-backed and trustworthy information that aids people in learning about their feelings and thoughts, dispelling misinformation and encouraging people to seek assistance and support.

All of these accounts are run by professionals. They are consistent in how they post and the types of content they post, building a loyal and engaged community that are ready to share the relatable content contained within.

TikTok’s guidelines for health and wellness brands

As part of TikTok’s rules, brands must adhere to many guidelines in the interest of protecting communities on the app. It’s key to avoid misinformation, ensuring nothing illegal or unsafe is touted or advertised on the platform.

Naturally, this includes careful consideration regarding the sale and education around any kind of health and wellness products.

“Our harmful misinformation policies prohibit content that could mislead our community about civic processes, public health, or safety. For instance, we do not allow medical misinformation about vaccines or abortion.”

There are a number of products that brands can’t share content promoting: prescription-only drugs, class III medical devices, infant formula, at-home self diagnostic tests, hangover cures, tan boosters and meal replacements.

In the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) also monitor and regulate how you can promote and advertise products for health on social media. This includes, but is not limited to, supplements, CBD products and non-medical devices.

The ASA categorises ailments into those that can widely be advertised to the general public and those too serious to be diagnosed and treated without medical supervision. Claims of efficacy, ability to cure/heal or prevent must be supported by approved types of evidence too — so bear this in mind when making any medical claims.

Pharmaceutical companies may utilise social media, but as you can imagine, there are stringent regulations in place to ensure clarity, accuracy and proper use of these channels. These businesses and their content are covered under the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority (PMCPA); they released guidance specifically relating to the use of social media to aid brands and businesses navigate what’s safe and relevant to promote to audiences.

It is a minefield, but one that’s possible to navigate.

Is your health TikTok strategy a bit under the weather?

TikTok is leading the way for health and wellness marketers, but a strategic, creative, mindful approach is absolutely crucial. Take a look at some of our work with a leading UK health retailer — we helped them shape up their TikTok strategy and stop the scroll.

If you want a piece of this action but aren’t quite sure how, our team of TikTok marketing specialists can make your health and wellness product strategy all better.

Does your TikTok need a health check?

Get in touch today

Post by

Headshot Donna col


Head of Social

Since forming Extreme’s social media department back in 2012, our Head of Social Donna and her team’s work has been recognised nationally. With extensive experience spanning mutiple sectors, Donna specialises in social strategy, ideation and paid social advertising.

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