• Christina Chau

How Businesses Go Viral on TikTok

What is Tik Tok?

TikTok is an app that has taken the world by storm over the past five years. It allows users to create videos up to 60 seconds in length. According to Sensor Tower, as of December 2020, TikTok had been downloaded a total of six billion times. Continuously increasing in popularity, in January 2021, the app had 689 monthly users worldwide. With these high numbers, TikTok continues to grow in popularity and demand.

Why is this important to your business?

There are several ways businesses benefit from the use of TikTok, but it is important to first identify your target audience. As shown in the graph below, about 50% of TikTok’s users worldwide are under the age of 34, and 26% of those users are between 18-24.


TikTok could be used to increase awareness for your business. NASO, for example, is a small business owned by Uyi Omorogbe, a 23-year-old first-generation Nigerian American. Omorogbe’s brand consists of African-inspired clothing. He told Inc. that his first viral TikTok was posted in April 2020, and within 72 hours, NASO products completely sold out. Like Omorogbe, Mimi Shou, a 26-year-old business owner from New York, also benefited from TikTok. She told Inc. her jewelry company’s sales increased by 380% after going viral on the app.

You may be wondering, how did small business owners do it? They did it by building an online presence with their attention-grabbing content. Omorogbe began by creating funny content, and Shou shared stories that were relatable to the app’s users. The online presence that both business owners created for their brands allowed them to build a following. Like these two businesses and the many others that have found success through the use of TikTok, your business could benefit from being the next viral video.

How to Start

In June 2020, TikTok launched “TikTok for Business,” which gives business owners access to ad formats, brand takeovers, in-feed video ads, branded effects and hashtag challenges. Though these TikTok ads may be pricey, there are ways to go viral without spending a single dime.

It all starts with TikTok’s “For You Page” (FYP). The “For You Page” is what makes the app unique, and it happens to be the first page users see when they open the app. The FYP is tailored to each user based on the content they interact with and the accounts they follow.

To get on users’ FYPs, the content your business creates should be based on its target audience to generate the most views, interactions and likes. Also, by using trending sounds, relevant hashtags and participating in challenges, your content will reach a wider audience — increasing your chances of landing on FYPs.

Some additional tips:

1. Be original: Be creative, and use your personality to start trends! Creating sounds, hashtags and challenges is a great way to increase brand awareness and attract users to your account.

2. Be consistent: Consistency is key to going viral on TikTok. Posting frequently will not only increase your chance of appearing on your audience’s FYPs, but it will also provide you with insight regarding your account’s performance.

3. Be patient: Going viral on TikTok doesn’t usually happen overnight, so don’t be alarmed when your first video doesn’t go viral. Don’t give up, and keep trying!

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