What is TikTok?
TikTok is a video sharing app owned by the Chinese company ByteDance. It’s quite popular among young people. It’s competitors are of course Youtube and Facebook.
On TikTok, you can add special effects, text, and captions to your videos. Another Common Feature of the app is the ability to DUET other peoples videos. In short, you can respond to them or overlay your own video response to theirs.
Ok, that’s nice and all, but what does TikTok have to do with making money?
It turns out you can use the platform to generate income. However, if you are starting out, it will take awhile to get to the point it is PASSIVE INCOME. As of right now, I haven’t made much on the app, but I’ll tell you about my experience and what I’ve learned.
How can you use TikTok To Make Money?
- Live Streams
- Video Tips
- Creator Fund
- Paid Sponsorships and Paid Promotions
1)The fastest way to make money on TikTok is from LIVE streams. Your viewers can give you diamonds (TikTok tips basically). These diamonds can then be converted to cash and sent to your paypal account (VERY EASY to DO). At the same time, there’s nothing PASSIVE about this.
REQUIREMENT TO DO LIVE STREAMS-You must have 1000 followers.
Gaining this amount of followers can be difficult depending on your niche and whether or not one of your videos goes “viral.”
2)The next way you can make money is once you’re at 10K followers, you’re eligible to get tips on your videos (without being LIVE).
3)Even further along, you can join the TIK TOK CREATOR FUND. I’m not there yet, so I can’t offer insight into this. I just know you get paid depending on how many views you get. A few cents per 1000 views.
4)Lastly, there are paid promotions, sponsorships, etc. If you happen to obtain a channel with a large following, there’s a good chance someone will reach out to you for a paid promotion.
How Much have I made on TikTok? What’s my Experience been like?
I’ve been on TikTok for 15 months, I currently have over 4500 followers. I average anywhere from 500 to 3000 views on my videos, and have a few TikTok videos with 20K views. In short, I’m not a large account; mostly because I serve a very small niche of music. Words you will probably never hear me say, “My TikTok account with 2 million subscribers.”
LIVE STREAMS I do good to make $2 a Stream. I do these LIVE STREAMS approximately 3 times a week. This is certainly no way to make a living.
I have friends with 100K followers and they MIGHT make $10 in a Live Stream. I can’t see these live streams being a good source of income unless you have like a million followers. Once again, certainly not passive income. A great deal of your audience doesn’t even buy the required gift packs to tip you, so there is that as well. Doing Live Streams can be frustrating because you might invest an hour of your time for little to no return.
On the other hand, the live streams have indirectly lead to the following increases in passive income:
- Increased Patreon members; thereby increasing my monthly income
- More Spotify listeners which increases passive income
- More youtube Subscribers
- More website visitors.
At this point, I mainly see TikTok as a tool to help me drive traffic elsewhere. I’m there to build fans and relationships which indirectly leads to more income.
I see creators who go LIVE every single day, so surely they are making something doing this (they can’t all be unemployed!).
How Often do I post on TIKTOK?
I post videos around four times every week. The common recommendation is to post up to two videos a day. I HAVE done that in the past, I think it’s good to post daily when you’re first building your account.
However, I found out that too much new content made my views suffer by pushing the 2nd newest content back. So, now I sometimes go up to three days without posting. I find this is the best ratio for me to keep viewers watching and end up with a decent amount of views. Not to mention, the more focused on quantity you become, the more apt you are to let the QUALITY slip.
Pay attention to the TYPES of videos you post that perform best. In the beginning, duets were a hit for me, but as time went on other types of videos worked better. The TikTok algorithm is constantly changing so you have to adapt. I keep a spreadsheet of my videos and metrics….but that’s just me.
TikTok vs. Youtube
Passive Income requirements:
You need 1000 subscribers and 4000 watch hours to monetize your material on youtube. You need 1000 followers on TikTok to go LIVE. Once you can go LIVE, you can receive tips from your viewers. In my opinion, it’s more difficult to get subscribers on Youtube. I amassed the same number of followers on TikTok within a year and a half that I did in 5 years on YouTube.
There seems to be much more interaction on TikTok. However, once again, I attract an older audience on YouTube. For whatever reason, these people choose not to comment as much on my youtube. The younger generation is more apt to comment (both good and bad :P)
Youtube is by far better for BUSINESS CONVERSIONS. Around 20% of my website traffic comes from YouTube (either links under the video or clicking on cards). This of course leads to digital product sales. I track this directly in Google Analytics.
The Future of TikTok
TikTok is taking aim at longer form content, offering up to 10 minute videos. I don’t know how that will work out. I think TikTok is more of a Wham Bam….those with Short Attention Spans love this place. It kind of feels off watching the longer content on TikTok to me. If I want to watch long form, I’ll go to Youtube.
Youtube is TRYING to take market share from TikTok with its shorts. IMO, its not working. While Youtube Shorts can work and they are helping my channel, I just think TikTok does the Short video better.
As a long-time Youtube creator, I personally think it is getting weaker for smaller channels. I know it’s not going away for long from content. However, I have friends with over 100K subscribers on YouTube and their shorts and videos are barely getting any views these days compared to what their TikTok accounts are doing. You can reach so many people faster via TikTok. Once TikTok finds a way to enable creators to get paid better, I think this will put a SERIOUS hurt on Youtube’s business.
CONS of TIKTOK
1)There are some crazy people on TikTok. In fact, I will say it attracts the lowest of low. The kind of people that would rejoice in seeing a handicap kid or old person fall down a flight of stairs. Anonymous cyber bullies run rampart. However, they don’t represent the majority. Just know what you are getting into, having thick skin is a must if you put yourself out there. One of the most amusing things I’ve seen is a digital marketer post a How To video and a guy responded, “What makes you think I want your help or wanted to see this video!” HAHAHAH.
2)TikTok can and does remove/ban people’s accounts. Often people say they have no idea why this happened. There is a danger in working for years on getting an account with over 200K followers and POOF! one day your account vanishes. Some people get banned because a bunch of trolls reported them due to a disagreement. This is why I say LEAD PEOPLE TO YOUR WEBSITE and your other accounts. You do not want to lose followers you’ve spent time finding. Get them on your email list if possible.
3)The algorithm is super moody. You can post something and it go viral and a good video fall flat on its face because it never made it to the For You Page.
Anyways, I will report back here in a few months concerning my TIKTOK experience. For the moment, I am enjoying using it to drive traffic elsewhere. Possibly by the end of the year I’ll have 10K followers and have some more options for PASSIVE INCOME from TikTok.
4)Tik Tok Videos do not show up in Google Searches like Youtube or Facebook material. The primary way someone will find your videos is by being on the app and that’s it.
You make around 2 to 5 cents per 1000 views from the creator Fund