From Staying on Trend to Trendsetter on Tik Tok

By The Gigstarter Team on 03-04-2024 |

Social media has become unavoidable for everyone. If you are an artist, you will certainly have an interest in having a well-curated profile that allows you to promote your music online. In particular, one of the many apps out there has gained a lot of attention and popularity in recent years and is now considered a true phenomenon: TikTok. Having talked about the best way to get started on the platform and how to connect with fans, it's now time to take a closer look at the dynamics of the app. In this article we will look into why it is so important in the music world, explore its operational mechanisms and highlight a couple of successful trailblazers.


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TikTok is the new norm; Vine and Musically are long gone

There's no doubt that with the rise of streaming and social media, the music industry has undergone a significant transformation, influencing how we engage with it. One notable shift is the increase in popularity of short video formats, as more users turn to online platforms for music consumption. Through dances, challenges, and other diverse content, almost anyone can rapidly gain tremendous visibility and attract a new audience.


At the moment, TikTok is the app with the highest engagement. Usage statistics compiled by Business2Community in 2023 confirm that an average user opens the app 19 times a day, far surpassing the average Facebook user who stops at only 8 daily openings. The popularity of TikTok has even influenced other platforms to incorporate the short video format, as the examples of Instagram with Reels and YouTube with Shorts. TikTok took over by storm, making other platforms very similar to this one history. The difference is in the monetization for creators, the creators get rewarded. Ofcourse there's more to it, such as video length, audio usage, filters and so on.


Whether one likes it or not, knowing how to make the best use of the TikTok is the most concrete way to increase your chances of success. For this very reason, Gigstarter made an overview of the main concerns to keep in mind when using the app.


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Elevate your TikTok skills

The core of TikTok revolves around the originality of content. The algorithm aims to give greater visibility to content considered most interesting and relevant, based on users' searches and likes. It takes into account several elements, including hashtags, the number of interactions, the music and effects used. The more attractive a piece of content is considered by a particular user, the more it will be present in the 'For You' section. Using popular hashtags that have nothing to do with the content you want to promote might confuse the algorithm. The algorithm attempts to personalize the 'For You' page for each user, showcasing content that it predicts the user will find engaging based on interactions the user made in the past. The exact workings of the algorithm are proprietary and subject to change as TikTok continues to update its platform.


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Another crucial aspect to keep in mind is that TikTok rewards the playing time of the content. The more videos are played to the end, without interruptions, the more likely the algorithm will decide to offer them to users who have liked similar products and trends. Don't forget that the words used in captions are also important. If they are accurate and interesting, the algorithm is more likely to show your content. However, unlike Instagram, TikTok's algorithm is not influenced that much by the number of followers of an account. The platform does not give priority to this element, but prefers to focus on the quality of the content and the level of approval that individual videos receive.


The audio that's used for a video also plays a big part in the success of a video. Did you ever notice while scrolling through the 'For You' Page you heard the same 6 songs already over 50 times? That's not just a coincidience. Especially after Universal Music Group removed the music of their artists from the platform, the song options got more "limited". The platform is known for its ability to drive music trends and make songs popular and Tiktok definitely can influence the visibility of certain songs on users' 'For You Page'.

TikTok Success Stories: Cat Janice

Another story that has deeply moved the internet and beyond in recent days involves upcoming singer Cat Janice. Her story is an example of how a genuine message with a noble purpose can reach a huge community of users on TikTok and literally change an artist's life. It was when the doctors gave her a few months to live due to severe cancer that Cat decided not to give up and wanted at all costs to try to secure a future for her 7 year old son. Through a deeply moving video message, Cat asked her audience to share the new song as much as possible, revealing that all rights would be given to her son Loren. The singer-songwriter passed away on the 28th of February 2024.



'Dance You Outta My Head' was officially released on January 19th and has since reached number one on the viral track chart on TikTok Billboard Top 50. Additionally, it has entered the top 10 on the Billboard Hot Dance/Electronica chart and has garnered over 13 million streams on Spotify. Furthermore, the song has been used by more than 2.6 million users on TikTok, making it one of the most utilized sounds of 2024.

TikTok Success Stories: Gayle

After TikTok got a hold of GAYLE’s song 'abcdefu' it became one of the biggest songs in the world. However, the song's success on TikTok wasn't immediate; it had been out for some months with decent streaming numbers before suddenly skyrocketing to 107 million streams a month later. 'abcdefu' landed No. 1 on both the Billboard Global 200 and the Billboard Global Excl. Many TikTok users believe GAYLE wrote the track in response to a fan’s comment asking her to “write a breakup song using the alphabet”:

@gaylecantspell Reply to @nancy_berman definitely not based off personal experience... #orginalsong #newmusic #plslikethisaccount #hastagsworkapparently #acoustic ♬ abcdefu - GAYLE

Later on, the artist was even nominated for Grammy Awards in the 'Song of the Year' category, though ultimately losing to Bonnie Raitt. This song demonstrates the potential of TikTok not just as a platform for entertainment, but as a powerful tool for artists to gain international recognition.


As a final part, we would like to leave you with a set of best practices to always keep in mind. Whether you are a rookie or an experienced content creator, we have tried to provide you with a number of tricks that may be useful.


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Whether you're a musician, a dancer, or simply someone with something creative to share, social media can be a powerful ally in spreading your message. Stay on top of trends and you might end up starting the next one!


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Tags: TikTok, hashtag, viral, tips, tricks, profile, trending, music, social media, popularity