Well, fellow lock-downers, I don’t know about you but I seem to be experiencing lockdown fatigue this week and I didn’t even realise that was a ‘thing’.

The entertainment industry, whilst being one of the hardest hit, has provided some of the most uplifting posts on social media with treats such as the live streaming of; west end performances, ballets, and concerts.

However, social distancing measures means that this great industry may take even longer to get back on its feet. So now could be a good time to explore a new medium that could provide an income stream and provide a platform from to better bounce back after restrictions have been lifted.

You’ll no doubt have come across some of the videos that have been created via TikTok. Being described as the social media sensation of lockdown, it’s huge! As of 2 May, there are currently 800 million active users worldwide and the app has been downloaded over 1.5 billion times on the App Store and Google Play. Think of the potential audiences you could reach! If you haven’t yet tried it what are you waiting for? Let’s be honest, you’re going to have the time to experiment with it.

Launched in China as Douyin in 2016 TikTok was the fourth most popular iPhone app downloaded in 2019, surpassed only by YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat. In the US alone 2 million more women (8.2 million) than men (6.1 million) now use TikTok and it’s estimated that roughly 50% of its global audience is under the age of 34.

TikTok Logo

Why is it so popular?

Well, its success can largely be attributed to an algorithm that has the ability to propel a video virally based on the velocity of engagement it receives – in other words, it’s great at promoting new material. If you’re looking to engage with Generation Z then TikTok is the way to go by combining music, filters, and effects into a 15-second video with the addition of challenges and hashtags.

Who has the most followers?

Loren Gray was TikTok’s most successful account outside China, an American singer and social media personality with 42.8 million followers – that was until 25 March 2020 when Charli D’Amelio, who turned 16 on 1 May, overtook Loren with 52.6 million followers. I don’t know about you but I think that’s quite a platform. A social media personality and dancer, Charli has, in just 10 months, achieved amazing success on all platforms and in January was signed with the talent agency UTA. She also appeared in a Super Bowl commercial. Variety reports that 102 million people tuned in to watch the Super Bowl on 2 February 2020 – need I go on?

Wikipedia as of 1 May cites the top 50 TikTok account holders and the biggest surprise was that there is no one from the UK on that list – a gap in the market methinks! Knowing how much talent we have at our fingertips; wouldn’t it be amazing to see someone from the UK reach a global audience!

Closer to home we do have Arshdeep Soni, a magician based in Shepherds Bush who currently has 6 million followers (for context Ariana Grande is no: 50 with 16.5 million). From planning his ideas, rehearsing his magic to fit the right moment, and then editing his work, Arshdeep says it does involve a lot of time as he has to really consider the tactics needed when deciding the best time to post. How fortunate that time is the one commodity we can really utilise to our advantage during lockdown. Although Soni posts on Instagram and YouTube, his biggest audience is TikTok.

Best platform for you?

There are clear links with the demographic and the most followed TikTok stars. One family, the Harfins from Scotland, currently has 1.9 million followers. The family includes sons Harrison and Finley and their Mum Felicity. Having become TikTok stars, Felicity has used excellent entrepreneurial skills to tap into a potentially lucrative business, giving clients from Mattel to the Brits a chance to be included in their videos.

At the moment, the best way for you to make money through TikTok is to make direct contact with brands and then incorporate them into your videos. However, only when your number of followers reaches the hundreds of thousands can you really start to earn money. Influencer Marketing Hub provides useful information about creating your profile and which influencers are hot right now. It will also help you with ways in which you can earn money such as gifting and brand partnership.

As with all social media platforms, it’s important to keep in mind that not everyone ‘gets’ the latest craze and for some people ‘trolling’ and ‘hating’ others has become somewhat of a full-time occupation. Work on your resilience and surround yourself with the things you love most and of course, be kind to yourself.

Here at the Showbiz Accountant, we’re using our experiences during lockdown to offer our clients a bespoke service that takes into account the latest government advice on COVID-19 and taxes. Call us on 0203 384 2224 for a free initial consultation.

‘It’s when we start working together that the real healing takes place’ – David Hume, Scottish Philosopher

Take care in there and remember, if TikTok is the new social media sensation during lockdown, you could become it’s latest star!

Could TikTok provide a platform for your talents or a lucrative income stream?

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