For those who are not regularly on TikTok, the platform is sometimes incomprehensible. Singing and dancing young people can suddenly become world stars, with films that make you wonder what is so fascinating about it. Like Bella Poarch’s video in which she mimics a song by English rapper Millie B.
Times have changed
“Times have completely changed”, says Tiktokker Lorenzo Dinatelle. “Kids spend hours a day on their phones, mostly watching TikTok. Sometimes they see me on their screen six times a day.” Lorenzo is busy with TikTok all day. He makes videos for his 611,000,000 followers and advises companies on the use of the social medium.
TikTok is especially popular among young people and according to Emerce in the Netherlands has about 3.5 million users. It mainly consists of short films of maximum 15 seconds. Popular videos are often fast, creative and above all a lot of fun to watch.
According to Lorenzo, the video of the playbacking Bella Poarch is popular because it looks away very easily. “You float a bit,” he says. “I will keep watching it personally, I think I have watched it three times in a row.” And the latter is very important: interaction is rewarded within the TikTok system. In other words: the more often something is viewed by users, the more other users will also see it.
Not for everyone
However, not everyone should expect that with a little miming, they will immediately collect hundreds of millions of views. Bella Poarch, for example, is already a well-known TikTokker, which means that she reaches a wider audience more quickly. “TikTok needs good content creators to keep you on the platform. So TikTok looks at who the top users are in a country and pushes them.”
Timing is also very important. “Bella is joining a trend that is going viral, and she was one of the first to do so,” said Glen Fontein, who has 931,000 followers on TikTok herself. TikTok is known for the trends, where everyone, for example, does the same dance or mimics the same song. Bella Poarch’s video is one of them.
Fresh and short
According to Glen, a good TikTok video should look fresh and make a point quickly. “It shouldn’t be too complicated and not too long. Most virals are between 10 and 15 seconds,” he says.
At first you could make videos of up to 15 seconds on TikTok, but now that is one minute. Still, it’s better to keep it short, says Glen. “People just don’t watch a minute. I’ve made a one-minute video myself, it just doesn’t work.”
Films should also be creative, spontaneous and above all very cheerful, adds Lorenzo. “It has to be original and you have to have fun making the video. Make sure you are happy about it.”
The two understand that many young people dream of becoming popular with these kinds of films, just like Glen and Lorenzo. “It just makes good money,” says Glen. And it is also fun to make.
Yet many young people think it is easier than it seems. “Our work is also quite tough,” says Glen. “You have to think creatively full-time. You have to stay original, otherwise people will not look. That is also mentally tough. Anyone can go viral once, but you have to hold on to it.”