The Internet’s Newest Social Media: TikTok
TikTok is the internet’s newest social media platform, and has over 30 million users in the USA alone, who spend an average of 46 minutes a day on the app. This totals out to be 37 billion video views a month. The age of TikTok users in the US is 18-24 years old, which account for 42% of all users. TikTok’s algorithm, as well as the hype, might seem strange to those who’ve never used the app, or any similar predecessors such as Vine. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to virality on TikTok, or even which type of videos make it to the coveted For You Page. Here, we will break down how TikTok’s algorithm works, and how-to best use SEO practices to make it viral.
How the Algorithm Works
If you’ve scrolled TikTok, you’ll know that the For You Page is the best place to go to find the best new content. Previously, we could only make assumptions that the For You Page appeared to be a curated feed, pulling videos that are related to your profile, location, and similar to videos you’ve already liked and engaged with. Now, we have some facts, from TikTok themselves, on how the For You Pag reflects preferences unique to each user. According to TikTok, “the system recommends content by ranking videos based on a combination of factors, starting from interests you express as a new user and adjusting for things you indicate you’re not interested in, too”. These factors include things like user interaction such as the videos you like or share, accounts you follow, comments you post, and content you create, video information such as captions, sounds, and hashtags, as well as device and account settings like your language preference, country setting, and device type. Each of these factors is individually weighted by the TikTok’s For You recommendation system, meaning that each For You page will be completely unique to a user and their level of interest.
Knowing how the algorithm works usually clears things up for most users of other social medias. That isn’t really the case with TikTok, knowing that the For You page is almost entirely dependent on someone’s usage and interests, how do you ensure your TikTok comes up? TikTok employs the use of hashtags, which is one of the most important ways for new users to get their content into the large streams of views. Many people want to make content on TikTok to have millions of people see it, but how is that possible? Here are some of the best tricks.
- Focus Your Hashtags: A lot of content creators focus on hashtags that have high volumes of videos and are too saturated with content. Find hashtags you can rank well in and be at the top of to be promoted on the home page.
- Communicate with your Audience: Use other social medias and your website to communicate with your audience. All content creators should have a website and other social media platforms to engage with and connect to new followers. TikTok limits the length of both captions on videos, as well as comment replies. Users can have their accounts temporarily suspended from commenting if they do too much, or if they like too many videos in a short time. Having an Instagram or Facebook for viewers to go over to and get long form answers to their questions, in prompt time, is very valuable.
- Optimize Your Content for SEO: Growing into high volume keywords and optimize. Go through past content and look for opportunities where you can optimize with your new keywords. This will help you grow into the higher volume keyword pockets and hit high traffic levels.
- Create User Funnels from TikTok: Many users fail in moving traffic from their TikTok to other platforms. Create an engaging website that displays your brand and encourage users from TikTok to visit it. Track how they interact with your brand and remarket to them across Facebook and Instagram, this is the main goal.