TikTok Made Me Rethink Social Media Strategy
It’s March 16th, 2020. The office shut down, and P&P weathered the first wave of panicked uncertainty brought on by COVID-19, not knowing we were in for the long haul.
My semi-social city existence went on hiatus. I moved into my childhood home so I’d remember other people exist. All of a sudden, my parent’s kitchen table was my work desk and time was meaningless. After client work, zoom meetings and bourbon with Beshear, I’d settle in for a night of scrolling.
Yes. Like many fellow millennials, my quarantine escapism was diving headfirst into an absolutely foreign corner of the Internet: TikTok.
In its current state, TikTok is used to view, create and share short videos. There’s a lot of dancing (honoring its roots as a music sharing platform), but it’s also great for funny videos, educational content and creativity. Think YouTube, but with an algorithm strong enough to keep a fruit fly hooked.
I quickly found that I LOVE TikTok. I love it because it makes me smile. I love it because I learn cool things and experience perspectives different from my own. I love it because it’s a place where incredible artistic collaboration can happen. But most of all, I love TikTok because people are real there.
The performance of social media is vastly different on TikTok than it is on Facebook or Instagram. People don’t care about crafting impeccable photo grids, or filtering their best selfie to perfection. TikTok is where people go to speak their minds, be themselves and find solidarity in others. Frankly, TikTok is doing a lot of things right, and I wish those things were easier on other apps.
Three reasons TikTok should make you rethink social media:
You need to know your audience
Knowing your audience can help you plan and create content long term. It’s how you stop being noise and start influencing people.
Take a look at your audience insights. Who’s following you? What do they interact with the most? Do you see your ideal client, stakeholder or target audience? You might find your current followers aren’t the people you need to reach after all. If that’s the case, it’s probably time to reevaluate your digital strategy.
Immediacy is everything
There are too many studies about our ever-dwindling attention spans to not prioritize this. People will quickly leave your page if they can’t find what they need. Are they looking for contact information, recent news or event details? Whatever it is, put it front and center. If it isn’t, people WILL keep scrolling.
There are a few ways to start doing this. On Facebook, for example, use the pin post feature to highlight big updates that are current and newsworthy. On Instagram, use Stories to share quick, time sensitive information you don’t want buried by the algorithm.
Be yourself and your people will find you
Authenticity is the best way to reach people who truly care about your cause, organization or product. This means letting your followers peek behind the curtain every now and then. How does it look on good days, when the whole team has their sleeves rolled up working on something they’re passionate about? What about the more disappointing days? Being transparent builds trust – something nearly all social media users prefer and expect.
Brand language can really shine here. Building an honest, straightforward content calendar using your voice and positioning statements will lead to more meaningful engagements from the right people. After that, consistency is everything. Say what you mean, say it again and watch your numbers grow.