Do you find it impossible to keep up with TikTok?
So do we!
That’s why we checked in with some of our favorite TikTokers to find out what they’ve been up to—and enjoying—on the platform.
1. Cover versions
Needless to say, cover versions of songs make up much of the content shared and enjoyed on TikTok. They’re popular with soloists, bands, and DJs.
Cover songs draw listeners in because of their familiarity. It’s an easy way to get people to check out your musical abilities by leveraging songs they already know and love.
Sure, there’s a whole lot of coverin’ going on in TikTok, but you can break through if your covers are better than the rest or you have an interesting take on the tunes you’re interpreting. For instance:
- Jazz versions of country music.
- A classical version of a hip hop classic.
- Acoustic takes on hard rock.
With TikTok, you’re only limited by your imagination, musical talent, and skills.
2. Respond to trends
Even if you hate trends and fads in music, they’re the heart and soul of TikTok. They fuel its algorithm and keep the platform evolving.
If you try to be too independent on TikTok and march to the beat of your own drummer, you could be left behind unless marching drummers are a current TikTok trend. Or you and your followers can start a marching drummer trend in your TikTok circle that takes off and becomes a global phenomenon.
3. Do a duet
TikTok’s duet videos are possibly one of the most popular features on the app. It allows users to make videos that respond to other people’s videos. For genuine artists, the duet feature offers a way to not only upload a reaction video but make it stand out by adding your unique spin on the original video. Making duet content is relatively easy and a proven way to reach the fanbase of another artist.
Another option: Post a duet challenge for one of your videos. It will encourage your followers to engage more with your content and get their followers to check it out.
4. Reply to comments on camera
Another interesting TikTok feature is the ability to record video replies to comments.
If someone leaves a comment on one of your videos, get the camera on your phone going and create a video reply to the comment. It’s a more personal way to respond to others and may give you a chance to demonstrate your talent by playing or singing something. It can also be a great way to take song requests from your followers.
5. Share demos
Not sure which new song to release next? Why not preview the options with your followers on TikTok and let them decide? They are likely representative of your complete fan base and will be able to select the one everyone will love. It can help identify the song you want to put your marketing dollars behind and feature at your concerts. It reduces the risks associated with releasing new music.
6. Become a TikTok vlogger
Breaking up your TikTok music videos with more personal day-in-the-life material can help build closer relationships with your fans. It may even help them understand your music better because they understand your life. Use TikTok’s stitch function to cut together short video snippets of your day and release a day-in-the-life video daily, so your fans always know what’s up.
7. Make your videos tell a bigger story
Randomly posting on TikTok is good. Why not take it to the next level and turn your posts into more of an exploration of your musical journey? It’s a great way to get people to come back because they’ll want to find out what’s up—and what’s next—in your musical career. You may even be able to inspire them on their creative journey.
8. Show ‘em how it’s done
Nothing brings fans closer than being transparent with them. (Taylor Swift, anyone?)
Use some of your TikTok content to reveal the behind-the-scenes of what you do. Don’t just show polished performances. Explain your creative process. Film rehearsals. Offer a few teaching moments. Maybe include some bloopers now and then. It will help humanize you to your fans and build closer connections with them.
9. Go LIVE
TikTok’s Go LIVE feature allows you to give live performances over the platform. It can be an excellent way to expand your in-person fan base into new parts of the country or the world. Take things to the next level and include a question-and-answer session in your live broadcasts. It will let your fans get to know you better and discover your interests, inspirations, and creative process.
TikTok often seems like a social distancing tool but Go LIVE can be used to bring people together.
10. Share your playlist
Most musicians have fantastic—or at least very interesting—taste in music.
Sharing what you listen to with the TikTok-sphere is an easy way to make connections with people who’ve got a similar music taste as you. You can then turn them into fans and followers. Hook them with music they know that you share in common, then introduce your tracks into the playlist.
TikTok is a lot more complex than most musicians who use it realize. You owe it to yourself to use its capabilities to the fullest to promote your music career.