TikTok Marketing 101
Over the recent years TikTok has played host to the rise of a number of music artists like Lil Nas X, Doja Cat and Ava Max. With over 500 million active users across the glove, getting your TikTok marketing right can make your career.
Why is TikTok so different?
TikTok is a unique platform that sprung to prominence over the last couple of years. It differs from every other social media platform in the way its content is produced and consumed.
In 2018 more than 55% of all active TikTok users were involved in production and consumption of content. This level of production is something that no other social media platform rivals.
By making it incredibly easy to produce content, the platform has made it so there is no shortage of content available for them to share. Creation is accessible for anyone who has the app and a spare minute or two. Whilst some more advanced content may take a couple of hours to put together, your typical videos can be slapped together in just seconds. TikTok reinvented the wheel, with a platform where everyone is an audience, and everyone can be a creator.
Alongside this, the creators of TikTok have laced the social media platform with the interactivity of modern dating technology. Much alike prominent dating apps, users can swipe away the content that doesn’t interest them.
This level of interaction has proven successful for TikTok in two ways. Firstly, TikTok are able to read which content a user is willing to invest time in and which they won’t. Secondly, the swiping feature made it viable for TikTok to show users content that isn’t of interest to them. In fact, it is something that forms part of the overall TikTok strategy of looking for something better. It keeps the experience captivating and makes it highly addictive.
How TIkTok Works
On TikTok, the algorithm focuses on discovery. The algorithm is constantly learning. The more time you spend on the platform, the better it will get to know your likes and dislikes. Its goal is to learn how to keep its users hooked, wanting more and feeling satisfied all at one time.
The TikTok algorithm deals with a massive amount of volume of content compared to other platforms. The primary principle behind the algorithm is all content gets a chance. TikTok summarised it as:
“While a video is likely to receive more views if posted by an account that has more followers, by virtue of that account having built up a larger follower base, neither follower count nor whether the account has had previous high-performing videos are direct factors in the recommendation system”.
TikTok aims to bring content that is interesting to the attention of its users. It has no interest in just promoting content by popular accounts. Every video that is uploaded is run to a small segment of recommended viewers to test its viability. If it performs well it will rapidly increase its audience size. If it doesn’t, it plummets pretty quickly.
This algorithm is what sets TikTok apart. Unlike all other social media platforms, TikTok is able to take content produced by zero-follower accounts and spin it, reaching millions of views. Anyone on TikTok has the chance to achieve a reach of millions.
How It Can Work For You
There are millions of users looking for something interesting in their feed. The TikTok principle of every content getting a chance creates the potential for you to go viral.
Dance routines, challenges and lip-sync videos have become a huge staple of the platform due to there potential for creator engagement. Some of these challenges have gained millions of views and thousands of recreations. This cycle of shared content can be the jackpot for your music, if it is at the certain of a trend. The wide exposure gives you a great chance to grow your brand and increase the prominence of your music.
Growing Your Following
If you are musician using TikTok, chances are your end goal is promoting your music and growing your audience.
The first place to start here would be to engage with the platform and expand your social media reach. Ultimately, this will in turn expand your music’s reach.
You will need to develop your TikTok page around the idea of featuring your music and captivating TikTok audiences. This needs to be done in a way that intrigues watchers and gets them actively engaged in your content. Sharing a snippet of your upcoming track isn’t going to cut it. That stuff is for the likes of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Here you are in the hands of TikTok’s algorithm. You need to post content for the platform, not for yourself.
Do Your Research
TikTok is a very unique platform. The content that becomes popular on TiKTok differs from the content that is popular on every other social media. If you intend on making this platform part of your music marketing strategy, invest your time in getting to know TikTok, it’s users and its content.
Spend time on TikTok yourself. Engage with the feeds and find popular accounts. See what content is growing in popularity and what content is a complete flop. The key to producing viral content is understanding what content is popular and why.
You need the algorithm to recognise that your content falls into a certain category and would satisfy a particular audience. Pick a topic that your content could be styled around and then stick to it. This will help the platform to identify who you are and what content you have to offer.
Trends and Challenges
TikTok experiences trends like no other. The platform is rife with trending videos and challenges going viral. If there is a challenge going viral, the viewers are much more likely to engage with that content. The algorithm knows this too and will prioritise this style of content.
If you see challenges popping up that you think you could adopt and do something interesting with, get to it! But remember to keep it consistent with your theme and not to deviate from your content style.
Just like almost every other platform, hashtags can really help you get discovered. On TikTok, they will help to pioneer challenges and viral trends. Using popular hashtags will increase your chances of appearing in the “discover” and “for you” tabs.
Feature your music
This is not the right place to do “out now on all streaming platform” announcements. Content like this will damage your chances at reaching a wider audience. However, producing content that features your music as its soundtrack will start to raise your profile. When it comes to challenges and trends, no other strategy will compare with having your song as the feature soundtrack.
Start a Viral Trend
Don’t just get involved in the viral challenges… Make one yourself! Find your music moment. Look for surprise drops, memorable lyrics on an unrivalled burst of sass. These will give you a memorable moment that content creators find it easy to connect with.
Once you’ve got this, you need to create the challenge itself. Remember to make the challenge memorable and engaging. It needs to be easy to understand and creators and viewers both need to get something out of it. Now that can be challenging to achieve, but it means it needs to be watchable, it needs to be fun and it needs to have room to interpret it in their own way.
Don’t Get Banned
TikTok are notorious for banning accounts who violate their rules. They are attempting to be highly active on safeguarding their users. But this means you can find yourself blocked for spam, offensive or harmful content.
Avoid using offensive materials and banned hashtags. Don’t play the follower game of following and unfollowing people and don’t use copyrighted content.
Are you looking to get your music out there? With Identity Music you can get your music all over the globe in order to gain the maximum exposure. By using our distribution and music promotion services, you’ll be able to take control while watching your music reach new heights.
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