Here’s What I Learned After Spending Over 500 Hours on TikTok

Dana NicoleEntrepreneur TipsLeave a Comment

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Last updated on May 22nd, 2020

Renegade and rat tat tat tat. If that doesn’t make sense to you, not to worry, because today, I’m going to be talking about what I’ve noticed while spending an insane amount of time on TikTok!

Today, I’m breaking down the trends and giving you an inside scoop as to what you need to do to have a successful TikTok marketing strategy.

What is TikTok

TikTok is a video app that allows users to create 15-60 second long videos and skits to entertain their audience. It’s kinda like YouTube meets Instagram and is highly addictive.

Who Uses TikTok

Here are some quick demographics of TikTok users:

Source: https://en.lab.appa.pe/2018-07/addicted-to-tiktok.html

Now that we understand who uses TikTok, let’s explore what types of content perform well so that you can start a successful TikTok marketing strategy!

Viral Content on TikTok

Going viral on TikTok isn’t as difficult as going viral on Instagram or Facebook (at the current moment).

Users on TikTok spend an average of 4.9 minutes per session. In comparison, users on Instagram spend 3.1 minutes per session.

Longer user session durations coupled with the fact that users can quickly consume lots of content in a small amount of time make it much easier for content to quickly rack up tons of views, comments and likes on TikTok!

One major misconception about TikTok is that to go viral, you need to either dance or lipsync.

But plenty of other types of content can go viral and cause you to get more followers on TikTok, so let’s dive into certain niches that thrive on TikTok.

Criteria of Viral Content

Viral content (normally) fits into five main criteria on TikTok:

  1. educational
  2. comedic
  3. relatable
  4. entertaining
  5. personal stories

Educational

Educational content is killing it on TikTok right now. Doctors, health professionals, coaches and consultants have flocked to TikTok to provide their audience with 60-second videos that are jam-packed with helpful tidbits and info.

Take Dr. Austin, for example. Dr. Austin is one of the many popular doctors on TikTok sharing fun, fact-based videos to help break popular health myths and inform both young and old viewers.

His videos have amassed millions of likes and views, such as this one:

@austinchiangmd

It’s all in the details. ##weightloss ##doctorlife

♬ crimewave by crystal castles – kermishy

Another example is Dr. Janine Kreft, a psychologist sharing her tips to help her audience learn how to stand up for themselves, quit overthinking and many other helpful skills.

If you have expertise in some areas your audience wants to hear from you on TikTok. I’ve seen viral videos in other niches including:

  • Sexual health
  • Art
  • Cooking/baking
  • DIY
  • Home improvement tips
  • Home care tips (such as how to fix a clogged drain)
  • Business
  • Awareness for disorders
  • Sign language lessons
  • Language lessons
  • High school tutoring (such as quick grammar tips)

The list goes on and it’s safe to say that educational content is highly popular and relevant on TikTok.

Here’s another example of a video with over 2 million views that teaches viewers how to fix a door frame.

@goodlyearth

How to fix a door that rubs the frame and doesn’t close ##protip ##handyman ##contractor ##oldguy ##door

♬ original sound – goodlyearth

Comedic

Comedic content shines on TikTok. You don’t have to go far to find it, because chances are, your “For You” page is likely loaded with tons of great comedic content.

Short, humorous and relatable skits have the capacity to explode in popularity and don’t require any heavy production.

Take this one for example:

@jauntyjuli

Sharing is caring ##welovepizza ##favoritefit ##fyp ##SnickersFixTheWorld ##lol ##tiktok

♬ original sound – jauntyjuli

While this video is very simple, it resonated with a lot of people and amassed millions of views.

Relatable

Brand loyalty stems from shared values, and when you are able to relate to your audience on a deeper level, they are going to be more willing to interact with your content.

TikTok videos are more relatable than a carefully curated feed full of perfect images.

Social media users are excited to see content that puts an emphasis on relatability over being overly polished.

Here’s a very simple example of someone trying to clip her dog’s nails:

@micahredding312

##got2bStyled ##quickcuts ##foru ##newchallenege ##psa ##4u ##4upage ##dogs ##dogsoftiktok

♬ original sound – micahredding312

Most dog owners know the struggle of trying to accomplish this task and therefore, can easily relate to it!

Entertaining

Dance and lipsync videos certainly do have their place on TikTok and they always do quite well because they are fun to watch and also fun to record!

@shannon_patrice

##whatamangottadochallenge 👯‍♀️

♬ original sound – shannon_patrice

There are certain TikTok dances that you can learn on YouTube (such as the Renegade), or you can make up a dance yourself. When it comes to dancing on TikTok, there are no rules other than to have fun.

Another highly popular trend was the “rat tat tat tat” trend where TikTokers lipsynced to a viral video. You can watch a compilation of the videos here to get an idea of what I mean.

Personal Stories

Personal stories (whether relatable or not) shine on TikTok. In a world where we often feel lonelier than we’d like, seeing videos that make us feel a certain type of way.

Stories on TikTok can elicit many different emotions. Some are meant to be touching and sweet while others are meant to create strong feelings and get viewers to take action (such as the video below):

@ocdocdonecutediva

Thank you for all your support! We ❤️ you! I’ll do another post tomorrow with my moms voice… see bio for how to donate.

♬ original sound – ocdocdonecutediva

Grandma YoYo instantly became a favourite on TikTok after she began posting short videos, often with inspirational messages to spread love and kindness while battling a terminal illness.

Another type of stories that viewers like is wholesome and relatable stories such as the one below:

@lama_mama_

My mom really loves your habablabas @tacobell ##lamamama ##tacobell ##foryou

♬ original sound – lama_mama_

From a business perspective, telling stories has always been one of the strongest marketing tactics you can use. When you tell stories, your audience is able to envision themselves in a certain situation. Branded storytelling is a fantastic way to include your audience in your narrative.

Understanding What Your Audience Wants

Before you start filming videos that fall into one of the above five categories, you first need to ask yourself what your audience wants to see on TikTok.

A good way to get to know your audience is by creating a persona of your viewer.

Creating a persona is just like creating a character for a story. You’re going to develop your personal based upon demographic and psychographic information.

Ask yourself: “what keeps my audience up at night? What is the ONE problem they need me to solve for them, and then, how can I solve that through the content I post on TikTok?

You’ll likely need to do some research. You can gather information by Googling the demographic you plan to target, seeing who/what brands they are already following on social media and evaluating content that has already gone viral in your niche.

Once you better understand your audience, it’s time to create your TikTok videos.

How Do You Create TikTok Videos?

You don’t need any fancy software to create TikToks. TikTok’s native video editor is sufficient for simple videos and slideshows. And with access to a library of different audios, stickers, effects and text, you can get quite creative with your videos!

In Conclusion

Brands that think TikTok is only for dancing and lipsyncing videos are missing out on a huge opportunity to connect with their audience.

By delivering consistent value in bite-sized videos, you’ll be able to cultivate a large following!

Are you using TikTok? Let me know in the comments below!

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About the Author

Dana Nicole

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Dana Nicole is a freelance content marketer. She has a Bachelor of Business with a major in marketing and has over 10 years of experience in marketing. She's passionate about Instagram marketing, blogging and SEO. Dana currently works with B2B and SaaS clients and uses her blog to help small businesses and bloggers learn online marketing!

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