I downloaded TikTok as a joke last July (as many people will claim if they downloaded it before it became “popular”). I decided to publish an old video of myself dancing goofily because no one was following me. I put some music on it and pushed the publish button. Thousands of views viewed it right away, much to my amazement. I was taken aback. “Remember me when you’re famous!” someone said. Here you can know how to blow up on tiktok and how was my journey on tiktok.
It appeared to be an unexplored social media gold mine where you didn’t have to be famous or a celebrity to earn views. You had a chance to “blow up” if you made a video that followed a common theme of trending videos at the time. But you had to be quick at it, which meant watching enough Tik Toks to know what was popular at the time.
“I hate you,” because I’d had a lot of views overnight
I was sitting on the floor of my room one night in November, locked in a trance of scrolling through videos, when I noticed a pattern. People narrating an embarrassing or bizarre story… but in auto tune… it was so particular. To say the least, it was entertaining, and I thought to myself, “Well, I have a good story.” So, without any makeup on and dressed in an oversized t-shirt, I sat my phone on the bathroom counter late at night and told my most embarrassing prom story. Now… I’m not sure if it was the trend, how early I was on it, the story, the way I told it, the “Baylor” t-shirt, or anything else… But the next day, I got a text from Preston (another TIkTok user) saying, “I hate you,” because I’d had a lot of views overnight.
The day progressed, and the views grew more spectacular. When I arrived into Brit Lit, the girl sitting next to me stated she recognized me from her Tik Tok For You page. Then the texts started coming in from friends. Not only did it show me that there were a lot more people using the app than I thought, but it also showed me how big the video had become. I received almost 1.4 million views. Apparently, 1.4 million people found my prom story funny enough to watch.
The video was only 10 minutes long, but it received over 240,000 likes and 700 comments. I couldn’t believe how many people were using the app in general. Thinking about my 240,000 likes in comparison to Baylor’s 16,000 students puts things into perspective.
I understood how simple and unpredictable it is to become a viral sensation on the internet – if you keep up with it. Of course, I didn’t keep up with it because I’m a full-time student, now 23 (yikes), and I work. I simply didn’t have time. But, given the current situation, I wish I had.
Charli D’Amelio, a 15-year-old Tik Tok celebrity, began starting videos about the same time I downloaded Tik Tok last summer. I remember scrolling past her dances and not thinking much of it, but she was responsible for many of the most famous Tik Tok dances and seemed to understand what viewers wanted. She continued to dance and has amassed an incredible 50 million Tik Tok followers and 16 million Instagram followers since then. Starting as a high school kid from the east coast, she has products, sponsors, and celebrity pals in less than a school year.
Tik Tok appears to be a new universe where everyone, not just the big and famous, may succeed if they do things correctly. Sometimes it’s not even the “algorithm” that gets you the most views that matters (i.e. if you use the G6 filter with flash and bling effect). Most Tik Tok stars, like Charli, had never been famous before.
Personally, I believe it is because the majority of the users are people. It’s the colossal underbelly of an iceberg full of ordinary kids all around the world — Gen Z kids who grew up on social media, were born in the 2000s, and were raised on online overstimulation.
To me, the level of understanding required to scroll through and comprehend a video is astounding. You must have seen particular films, be familiar with references to old Vines or YouTube videos, recall old songs, and be current on memes and current events. If I show one to my 65-year-old mother, she is absolutely perplexed, and I find myself having to break it down into various layers of understanding that I have as a young person who is always on social media.
Tik Tok is the entertainment industry of the next generation. Songs that are popular on Tik Tok quickly rise to the top of Spotify’s rankings. So today, random teenagers writing songs on their laptops in their rooms somewhere in the suburbs are suddenly making thousands of dollars per day just because their one song went viral on Tik Tok (presumably because Charli did a dance to it), and their fans flocked to Spotify. The music component alone might be a separate and lengthy story: genres are bending, and remixes are resurrecting old random songs from their graves in the early 2000s.
Many kids would rather swipe through Tik Toks than watch movies or TV programming. They’re so short that following them doesn’t follow much concentration. It makes me wonder what the future holds for celebrities. Some of these Tik Tok creators, who arguably don’t have the same level of talent as incredible actors and actresses or singers, don’t even have as many followers as some of these Tik Tok creators. They’re the closest thing they have to influencers.
So, here’s the answer to your burning question: how does one go viral on Tik Tok? I’ve devised my own algorithm. To begin with, I believe you must be youthful, between the ages of 15 and 27, to relate to the bulk of users.
Choose your specialty
Are you a dancer? Are you funny? Do you have the ability to tell a good story? What makes you from others? Wearing fashionable clothing can assist; at the moment, cropped jackets, grey sweatpants, and bucket hats appear to be the thing, at least among women.
Whatever you’re doing should have adequate illumination; fortunately, we don’t have that problem in Texas, but if it’s at night, you’ll need the infamous Tik Tok colored string lights (around $50 on Amazon).
You’re probably not related to anyone famous or already famous, therefore you’ll need to follow some kind of trend or hashtag to gain some followers. If you can blow up once, you can count on a few thousand viewers every time after that.
However, if you want to get big, you must keep up with it. Popular teen creators who moved into the “Hype House” in Los Angeles say they spend hours crafting each Tik Tok, which may span anywhere from 15 to 60 seconds. It’s said to be difficult job.
Reading the comments is one of my favorite parts, so commenting on videos is another way I’ve found to grow an audience. If your comment receives a lot of likes, you can be noticed for your wit. To stay up, one of the primary proponents just watches, likes, and interacts with Tik Toks every day. You’re essentially learning a new language, the Gen Z language, and putting it into practice on a regular basis. After only a few days without using the app, I’m already perplexed by various videos and trends. (However, I am proud of myself for being the first to publish an outdoor mirror selfie on Instagram before Charli D’Amelio.) I had the impression that I was ahead of the curve.)
There are probably some drawbacks to the app, such as the fact that some kids aren’t ready for that level of viewing or impact, and can make mistakes that result in a good old-fashioned “cancelling.” People are ready to collectively attack someone on TikTok because they enjoy cancel culture. Is it, however, all worth it for the chance to be the next big thing?