Thinking of making your first TikTok video?
You know, everyone’s talking about TikTok.
People are joining the platform in record numbers and creating fun TikTok videos.
But more importantly, small business owners are using it to build an audience! And their accounts are growing like crazy.
So are you ready yet?
Let’s dive in!
Why use TikTok?
Stats show that TikTok has over 500 million monthly active users.
And while it was very Gen-Z focused at first, this is changing.
Big brands and names like The Washington Post and Chipotle are starting to post videos.
Bloggers and small businesses are exploring TikTok marketing.
Not everyone will use it. Some people will hate it.
But if you are a video fan, or enjoy making fun content to build your audience, it’s definitely worth a go.
How to create your first TikTok video
Before you start, you need to download the app and sign up for an account.
Grab the app through the Apple App Store or Google Play, depending on your device.
There are a few options on how to sign up. I choose email but you can choose your mobile number, social media sites like Facebook, or even an Apple ID.
You’ll be asked to pick a few interests, then you are straight into seeing the videos.
Swipe up to continue to the next one, or use the reactions along the side of the screen to give your opinion.
Completing your profile
Next, go to the profile section to complete some info about you.
You can show your name or business name, and add a bio. You can change your cover photo and video, and connect with other apps like Instagram.
You can also access the settings and security area from here – it’s wise to check these out to avoid surprises!
Posting your first TikTok video
Once you’ve done the basics, you can add your first video.
You can post a video up to 60 seconds, but it’s a good idea to start with something shorter. 15 seconds is popular.
It couldn’t be simpler! The ‘+’ button at the bottom of the screen lets you add a video from your phone.
You’ll need to give the app access to your camera and microphone if you want to record something right away.
Or there’s an option to upload from your phone.
This is handy to use if you’ve prepared something on another app like Canva and want to add it to TikTok.
Once you’ve uploaded or recorded the video, you can add stickers and effects. You can also add text to the video and sounds.
Then you can add captions, hashtags, and tag friends.
There’s an option to set a cover from the still shots of the video too.
You can also set who can see the video, whether to allow comments, and add features such as duet or stitch.
There’s even the option to automatically share with other profiles you’ve connected such as Instagram.
Post the video. It may take a few seconds to upload. Then it will be live on TikTok!
In addition to just posting a video as it is, there are a few settings you can play around with.
You can add music or effects to the video as you upload or create it.
There are even playlists to use if you don’t have music in mind.
Effects add fun things to your face or surrounding elements. We’ve all seen things like bunny ears or star backgrounds.
Another setting is to Duet with other users.
Find a video to duet with, press Share and then Duet, and you can then record your video beside theirs.
If you don’t want anyone to use this setting with your videos, you can select ‘Duet Off’ before you publish.
How to use the TikTok app
Like all social media sites, you need to do more than just post your videos to get the most interaction.
For starters, spend a little time on the video feed. If you aren’t following anyone, you’ll get a range of random videos.
So start following people based on your interests and your business!
Next start to like, comment, and share videos you enjoy. Just tap the forward arrow to share the video, the speech bubble to comment, or the heart to like.
To see more from that person, swipe left for their profile.
You can also find more users to follow in a few ways.
You can use the search to look for them if you know their username.
This can be useful to follow brands in your niche, influencers, or even business friends.
You can also use the TikCode. This is something found in a user’s profile by tapping the four squares icon.
A QR code opens that you can scan with your phone and then follow the person.
Challenges are really popular and usually have a special hashtag.
They aren’t something people ‘win’ at, but they are great ways to interact with others and build your audience.
The #ChipotleLidFlip challenge is a great example of a brand using the idea.
Curious? Learn more about how to use hashtags on TikTok.
How to get more eyes on your videos
Once you start making videos, there are a few ways to create engaging content.
Experiment with some of these ideas to see how your audience responds.
Some ideas include:
- Learn the best time to post on TikTok based on when your audience responds.
- Test using the special effects on the platform to make videos even better.
- Don’t forget to use music – but make sure you’re allowed to use it first.
- Test out on-trend hashtags in relevant content.
- Try some creative TikTok video ideas.
- Watch what other brands are doing and see how you can create your own version.
- When you’re ready, check out how to run TikTok ads!
Testing your first TikTok video
Not everyone will love TikTok.
Not all of your customers or readers are going to be on it.
But if you want to appeal to a younger audience or test something new, starting with your first TikTok video is a good move.
Then experiment, follow ideas to get more eyes on the videos, and see what works.
Let us know in a comment how it goes with your first TikTok video!