by Monica Smith | staff writer

If TikTok was famous for one thing, it’s the general idea that gaining attention through likes on a post is easier and more accessible than any other social platform.  With that knowledge, a Tik Tok creator must know what attracts and engages their followers to keep them interested enough to stay. With just my Android Galaxy S8 phone quality, I will follow a formula and attempt to go viral in just five days. 

“It isn’t difficult for a video to go viral, mostly because of its algorithm and format,” junior Pedro Diaz said. 

The “For You” page is what is essentially used to target an audience. Tik Tok gathers information on your likes and dislikes, turning it into an algorithm solely dedicated to your interests.

“You can learn so much from just a view scrolls on the app,” junior Sidrah Syed said. “It’s like addictive and I can be in any mood and end up laughing.” 

There are three main things to consider when striving for fame on TikTok; originality, appeals, and consistency. 

Someone that has never used TikTok before will assume that it’s full of teenagers doing the same dance to the same repetitive song. And while that does often happen, the ones that go viral are the ones never copying what everyone else is doing. You’ll notice they added something in it to separate it from others, whether it be their own twist on the choreography or a remixed version. There will always be trends that cycle in and out on Tik Tok, so creating original content is essential to growth.

The diversity Tik Tok has is one of the key things to take advantage of. It’s important to recognize the many different subcultures that appear; art Tik Tok, food Tik Tok, anime Tik Tok, fashion Tik Tok.  Certain trends or challenges may appeal to someone more than the other person viewing it. So by sticking to a certain category, you will attract more attention from that specific group of people. 

The most important tip to follow is consistency. There’s no such thing as posting too much on TikTok; if anything a goal of three to five videos a day is ideal. Oftentimes you’ll see creators execute videos that take quantity over quality to heart, but they still receive just as much popularity. 

DAY ONE

 I knew I had to consider what trends I would be able to participate in. Without much difficulty, I was able to find one of the more recent challenges where you expose your past Halloween costumes. I noticed that the videos drawing a lot of attraction were costumes that were unique, ironic, and amusing. 

 Scrolling down my photo gallery to October 2014, I find the photo of me dressed as a plate of vibrant-yellow macaroni and cheese; an unforgettable costume that took lots of preparation and detail. With an optimistic approach, I publish my first video, refreshing the page numerous times to see the likes, follows, and comments roll in.  After all, that Halloween night my costume did receive the most attention compared to the other kids’ costumes walking down the street.

However, TikTok did not seem to favor it as much as I did.  A total of 258 users double-clicked the little red heart in the corner during the five days it was on my page. After the first day, I realized I needed to step up my TikTok game. 

DAY TWO

I decided to make use of my extensive sweater collection. Out of all the Tiktoks filmed, this one took the longest because of the mountain of sweaters piled in my closet. A video of me trying on all my knitted clothes would most likely appeal to an audience interested in fashion. Although this one was less popular in terms of likes, I received more comments and feedback from people who genuinely enjoyed the post. People asked where I shopped for my sweaters, how I even owned so many sweaters, to which I happily replied with a smiley face. 

DAYS THREE, FOUR, AND FIVE

As the last three days approached, my confidence in my Tiktok abilities declined dramatically. What had started with a self-assured outlook ended with a defeated sigh. I had overestimated how hard it would be to go viral on TikTok.

Between those days, I persisted despite the drought of attention, posting a variety of TikToks with the hope that one would land in someone’s For You page. Desperately, I posted a collage of relatable content, art videos, and my attempts at humor. Doing the math, I consistently achieved an average of 106 likes on each video. Ironically, the TikTok I spent the least amount of effort and time in got the most likes; a random shower-thought I thought was notably interesting. 

When my five-day journey ended I was mentally drained, but I had learned an abundance of things.

Luck plays a huge role on TikTok. Very rarely does someone get famous just off their first few videos. You could have a great video with lots of effort and skill put into it and gain almost no attention, but a video of a frog doing nothing will get a million likes. 

I also noticed that obtaining followers was far more difficult than getting likes. Throughout the five days, I only gained 20 followers, a small amount. I assume that the longer you are on TikTok the more people will follow.

I, unfortunately, didn’t reach my goal of going viral in just five days. I failed, but that doesn’t mean success is such a far-off concept. Without the time limit, I believe I could grow and reach my goal of becoming TikTok famous. 

Failure is something that needs to be accepted in order to achieve success. Nobody just starts with immediate positive results, and that can be proved through the successes of many celebrities, companies, and even TikTok stars. That, or maybe the TikTok fame life just isn’t for me.

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About The Author

Monica Smith is a junior at Johnson High school going into her first year of journalism. She enjoys playing tennis with friends, going thrift shopping, and painting.

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