How to use TikTok: A Beginners Guide
Updated: May 21, 2020
Explaining TikTok for beginners! Let's run through what it is, how people are making money from this newcomer on the social media scene, how people make money from it and some pro's and con's from a brand / marketing point of view.
#TikTok#TikTokforBeginners#TikTokHowTo I am sure you have been intrigued by all the hype surrounding TikTok - what exactly is it? Why has there been so much hype around it recently? And what does this mean for marketers? The app has definitely raised a lot of eyebrows - and questions - thanks to its incredible popularity. With more than 800 million active users, it has established itself as THE app for Gen Z - but even us millenials want in on the action.
HOW MANY USERS DOES TIKTOK HAVE?
Active Users globally are climbing steeply, as can be seen by the below graph by Statista for Daily Active Users or DAU on iOS (Jan 2017 - March 2020).
Statista: Global TikTok iOS DAU 2017-2020
WHAT CONTENT GOES VIRAL ON TIKTOK?
Wondering what factors affect the performance of a video? As always, it is hard to accurately say what the algorithm takes into account however we believe the below will help your content stand out.
Engagement: this is the most obvious metric as it is one we recognise from other social media platforms. The more likes, comments, shares, and downloads a TikTok video receives, the better it performs. Word on the street is that the TikTok algorithm calculates good quality by a minimum of 1 like for every 10 views. If a video then receives 20% more likes in 1 day, TikTok shows it to even more people - and potentially causes it to go viral.
Hashtags: the seemingly random viewers that TikTok’s algorithm chooses to show the videos to, is not so random. The TikTok algorithm shows users new videos based on hashtags they’ve previously engaged with. That is why having a TikTok hashtag strategy can make or break your performance.
Short-form Content - Um, doh? Whilst this may seem obvious as the platform only allows up to 1 minutes of video. But the videos on the shorter end of that minute perform better (so cut to the chase it seems!)
Grabbing your attention and then KEEPING it: this factor is extra important precisely because the content is short. The first 3 seconds of a TikTok video should grab an audience’s attention and clearly indicate what the video will be about. Using text overlays helps. Attention spans are shorter than ever and scrolling down has never been easier. How much of a TikTok video is watched will act as an indicator of the level of quality.
Lighting & Audio (if original sound): It goes without saying that the video quality, in general, should be high - so investing in a good phone and a flexi-tripod is usually completely worth it. TikTokers also report that using the “G6” filter on the platform helps. Fact or fiction, we are not sure!
HOW DO I SEE THE PERFORMANCE OF MY TIKTOK?
Did you know that just like Instagram, you actually have to change your account type in order to see analytics (they are not activated by default). Follow these simple steps to ensure you can track the performance of your content (it's completely free!)
Go to your Profile Settings and tap Manage My Account.
Tap Switch to Pro Account
Choose a category that best fits the type of content that is or will be featured on your account
Enter your phone number
Go back to the Settings menu and now you’ll be able to see an Analytics option
HOW DO PEOPLE MAKE MONEY ON TIKTOK?
Believe it or not, people actually make a lot of money on TikTok! We breakdown the key ways you can profit from the platform in this video:
1. Sponsorships & Brand Deals
If you have a large audience and are a good fit with a brand in terms of the content you share - it's possible to be sponsored by a company to promote their product and service. Although the figure of 250 000 fans is sometimes mentioned, as per the Instagram platform - there will be tiers of influencers e.g. nano, micro, high profile influencers - so the size of an influencer's audience need not be so huge (this will depend largely on the brand's objectives). When a brand is taking into account which influencers they would like to work with, they typically look at the following factors:
% of views from the For You Page
Average number of shares
Niche / Industry
2. Brokering Influencer Partnerships
If you are don't have the audience but have contacts who do - you could match them to brands for a small fee. TikTok is reported to have such a service but takes a large commission so there remains an opportunity for smaller agencies to 'sign' (officially or unofficially) certain TikTokers and land them brand deals for a portion of the deal.
3. TikTok Consulting
Given the very new nature of the platform, bigger companies are unlikely to barge head first into the platform without using a consultant or agency who knows more than them! If you can position yourself as a thought leader in this space, you may be able to help others navigate this novel landscape - and make some moolah doing it!
4. Hosting a live auction
Did you know that you can buy coins on the TikTok platform, and pay creators for their content or for a cause which they are supporting? Well, if someone has more than 1000 subscribers, they can go LIVE - giving you the opportunity to give money - virtually of course.
5. Running Advertising on TikTok
TikTok's ad platform has loads of branded opportunities to take a look at!
TopView - A video first format that presents your brand on the best and unmissable placement of TikTok, capturing full user attention with sight, sound and narrative.
Brand Takeover - Immediately hook user attention with full-screen static or dynamic display, delivering strong visual impact for your brand.
In-Feed Ads - Tell your brand story like a TikTok creator by integrating video content into users' "For You" feed.
Branded Hashtag Challenge - A one-of-a-kind engagement format that taps into user passion for creation and expression. Delivering strong brand awareness with a level of engagement that goes far beyond a simple click.
Branded Effects - Dial up the fun with tailor-made sharable stickers, filters, and special effects. Unleash the potential of your creativity and watch its popularity grow.
COMING SOON - many news publications report that AR ad formats are coming soon - much like those we have come to know and love on Snapchat.
6. Cross Promoting your Platforms
Cross-promoting your promotions on your other platforms, e.g., if you make a good income from YouTube you can use your TikTok channel to bring people over to your YouTube channel
7. Building up TikTok accounts & selling them
Much like Instagram 'feature' accounts which do this to great success - you can sell on your following to someone who doesn't want to start from scratch.
Although this is by no means a perfect science, a number of companies have launched TikTok money calculators, such as this one by Influencer Marketing Hub.
HOW TO LEARN TIKTOK DANCES
Want to learn how to Renegade but not sure how? There are loads of slowed down How To videos on YouTube to help you nail your moves! We love the Learn How to Dance YouTube channel, but there are loads of other ones which will have you doing the Savage dance in no time!
HOW TO EDIT YOUR TIKTOKS
This Seventeen article breaks down some pretty awesome apps to help you edit your TikToks better than Charli D'Amelio. So why not check out:
4. Dazz Cam
For you page here you come! #fyp
HOW TO MEASURE THE SUCCESS OF A TIKTOK CAMPAIGN
You can measure the success of a TikTok campaign by taking into account the below metrics:
1. Total views of all User Generated Content/Videos
2. Total likes on all User Generated Content
3. Total comments across all videos
4. Average Engagement Rate across all videos 5. Total shared across all videos
6. Total hashtag reach
7. Number of replays of each song featured/promoted
8. Total of user-generated videos created under a specific hashtag
9. Total of videos created using a specific song
I DON'T UNDERSTAND THE JARGON!
For You Page (#fyp)
The ‘For You’ feed can be found from the homepage and is the place where new videos are recommended to you based on the users, creators and videos you already like.
This is a feature that allows a creator to collaborate with another users video. You can only Duet with someone with the permission of the respective creator. Everyone has full control over who gets to perform duets with them on their videos.