With 800 million monthly users, TikTok is one of the fastest-growing newcomers to the world of social media platforms. Enabling users to create and share short videos, TikTok is considered more of an entertainment platform rather than a lifestyle site (such as Instagram or Pinterest).
Though TikTok certainly stands out from other social media platforms in style and content, it has one key element in common with all of them: the number of your followers is the main determining factor for your success.
For most aspiring TikTok stars, 1 million followers is the first big milestone for which to aim. But how to get such a large following?
1. Build a complete and eye-catching profile
Success is in the details. Pay attention to everything on your profile, including your username. Many users overlook the importance of choosing a username that is memorable, easy to spell, and original enough not to become confused with another user under a similar name. Keep in mind that the username that you choose on TikTok should also be available on Instagram and other social media for consistent branding across platforms.
2. Follow and like other’s profiles and content
Being unique is one of the keys to success on social media, but no matter how original you are, there are still bound to be other users that inspire you and whose content you enjoy. Follow profiles similar to yours in style and tone – their audience is also your target audience. By following and liking others, you’re getting your profile name in front of people who are likely to follow you as well.
3. Post consistent, high-quality content often
Though it might take some time to find your voice and create a unique style to your content, once you’ve done so, make sure to keep it consistent. This way, your viewers will know what to expect from you – and will be more likely to follow to see your content regularly, with the confidence that they’ll enjoy it.
Frequent posting is also important on TikTok. One often overlooked reason for this is that if you have a lot of content posted daily, someone who might be a casual viewer otherwise will follow you to make sure they don’t miss any of your posts. Posting twice daily is the recommended minimum, preferably at times when your core audience is likely to be active.
4. Use hashtags
Just like on Instagram, Twitter, and other social media, hashtags are one of the primary ways in which users find new content that falls within their interests. Use hashtags carefully to attract a broader audience. Generally speaking, hashtags should cover two basic requirements: belong to a popular search category, and be relevant to your videos.
If you’re having trouble matching the popular hashtags to your content, consider starting with a hashtag search to find out what’s trending right now and creating content in response.
5. Participate in challenges
One of the main distinguishing features of TikTok as a platform is the popularity of challenges. Large brands, celebrities, and startups all use hashtag challenges to generate engagement. Participating in these often will increase the chances of reaching a broader audience, particularly if your post goes viral.
6. Optimize your content and posting times for your audience
Switch to TikTok Pro to access analytics tools. These will provide you with valuable insights, particularly related to where the majority of your audience is located. This, in turn, can (and should) impact your posting times. For instance, if the bulk of your audience is from China and you’re located in the U.S., you’ll need to take the time zone difference into account. This will help you ensure that you post your content at times when your audience is likely to be active, rather than for instance at 3am Chinese time.
TikTok Pro will also give you access to other useful insights, such as the gender ratio of your followers – allowing you to optimize your content for your target audience.
7. Partner with other TikTok users
Creating content in collaboration with other TikTok users will expose your profile and your posts to their audience, thereby leading to an increase in following. To make sure this strategy is as effective as possible, team up with TikTok users with a similar or larger following than yours and matching type of content.
8. Integrate with other social media
Keep in mind that if you’re planning on using TikTok as a means of income or a career step, you need to create more than an account: you need a brand. To this end, make sure you cross-promote your content on other platforms. All of your social media accounts should use the same aesthetic, username, and similar content to create consistent branding.
9. Get your account verified
Once a TikTok account has been verified, a blue checkmark (tick) will appear next to the username. This increases the trustworthiness, noteworthiness, and authority of an account, making your audience more likely to hit the ‘follow’ button to see why your content has been deemed important enough to receive the blue badge.
10. Stay determined
Rome wasn’t built in a day, as they say. 1 million followers is a huge step that will take time, consistency, and determination to achieve. That being said, make sure you track the effectiveness of your attempts, and don’t be afraid to adapt your content or approach if your current strategy is not working.