Top tips for creating viral TikTok content. - MG Empower
Written by - Daniel Shale

Top tips for creating viral TikTok content.


The venues on the screen differ. Sometimes it’s a suburban living room. Sometimes it’s a public space, like a park. But regardless of the setting, arms and legs snake through speedy choreography with surprising ease. Lips wrap themselves around the rapid fire verses of the latest pop songs.

One glance at the number of views and it becomes clear. On TikTok, the world is watching and all the world, from kitchens to bedrooms to malls, is a stage.

The Advent of TikTok

Since it launched in 2015, TikTok has grown to reach 800 million users worldwide. For both established brands and those looking to make their mark, that number represents a market of potential consumers that continues to expand.  However, it is not simply enough to have a presence of the popular app. TikTok predicates itself on interaction. Users can not only upload videos of themselves dancing or lip-syncing, they can upload videos of their reactions to these things. TikTok is less about meticulously crafted content and more about joining in on the conversation.Here are 5 tips to help your brand get in on the conversation and go viral while doing it.

Create Hashtag Challenges

Challenges have been around on social media since “planking” appeared about a decade ago. However, the control that TikTok gives its users over the editing aspect of videos, has made it the go-to platform for challenges such as Chipotle’s Guac Dance Challenge.

The Guac Dance challenge is actually a perfect example of how a major brand can use TikTok and create a campaign designed around the medium. Piggy-backing off the hype surrounding national avocado day, Chipotle used their platform to challenge lovers of the fleshy fruit to create a dance inspired by it. Rather than having the minds at Chipotle come up with a dance and hope that it took off, the challenge put the onus on TikTok users to do what they do best. More importantly, by tying the challenge  into national avocado day, Chipotle found a space in which their brand was relevant and started a conversation. The results were an overwhelming success, racking up 500 million views.

The Right Hashtag

Tying back into taking part in the conversation, choosing the right hashtag is an incredibly important step. Hashtags are the new headlines, and quick skim through TikTok’s trending hashtags will help pinpoint the content and themes users are engaging with most.

From here, it’s on the brands to figure out where they best fit in and what they can bring to the table. This has led to the creation of branded hashtags and campaigns such as Guess’ “InMyDenim” campaign. Like the Chipotle “Guac Dance,” this campaign largely revolved around content created by users.

Pint-Sized Tutorials

In an information saturated world, TikTok’s short format videos have resonated with a generation whose attention is constantly taxed. And while the trend on platforms such as Youtube is for videos to get longer, providing more ad revenue, the length restrictions placed on TikTok creators have led to the production of uniquely, bite-sized tutorials.

For example, the 15-second makeup tutorial is now a staple of the app, with up and coming brands such as NudeStix getting in on creating tutorial content.

Embrace the Comedy

Maybe more than any other platform, TikTok embraces the less serious side of social media. Dances are meant to be accessible rather than dazzle, prompting other users to react or join in on the craze. The service embraces meme culture, with major brands such as the WWE even getting in on the jokes.

For brands looking to get the most out of the platform, it’s necessary to rethink your approach to content. The content that does well on TikTok tends to be content that doesn’t take itself too seriously. For brands looking to embrace a little levity when it comes to their image, TikTok provides a perfect place to do it.

Commission a Song

Music has always been part of the inherent appeal of TikTok, even more so after the apps owner, ByteDance, purchased and integrated in 2018. With a massive library of licensed music, TikTok provides users and content creators alike with a variety of options for scoring their videos. However, recently some brands have been taking the music and challenge aspect of the service a step further, commissioning original songs to accompany their branded challenges.

After achieving virality with their first song and  campaign, the “Eyes, Lips, Face challenge,” the cosmetics brand E.l.f are going all in on the commissioned songs trend. Furthermore, with TikTok changing its policy on licensed music, brands looking to incorporate tracks into their content will either have to rely on TikTok’s own library of royalty free music, or create their own.

With this change we expect more brands to follow in E.l.f and Chipotle, building campaigns around tracks they’ve commissioned.

A Different Light

For brands and influencers alike, TikTok represents a departure from the more superficial, cultivated self-image so prominent on platforms like Instagram. The service encourages users to not only be seen, but to engage with one another.

This goes for brands as well. The ones who have flourished on the service are the ones who have consistently found a balance between creating content that is entertaining, fun, and feels genuine, while exploring the lighter side of the brand’s persona. They consistently meet their users where they are, because they know the secret to going viral on TikTok: it’s a joint effort.

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