• Nicolai Harning
  • Steffen Würtz Fogh Thomsen
4. term, Interactive Digital Media, Master (Master Programme)
TikTok has grown into a massive social media platform since it rolled out on iOS and Android in 2017 quickly becoming popular for its unique design focusing solely on content discovery and never-ending individualised feed. TikTok’s For You Page is built around their discovery algorithm which, in real-time, calculates your next videos based on the interest signals you are showing. With content creators and businesses alike wanting to increase their following on this platform, the question becomes centred on the best ways to do this. This thesis attempts to answer this question by combining an array of theoretical- and empirical knowledge into a five-step model that highlights the key elements creators should follow in their effort to become a mainstay on the platform. Our thesis takes a ‘funnel’ approach to its research by starting with a wide array of academic articles and subjects and combining their knowledge into a more concise area of knowledge, finally culminating in the design of our model. Subjects such as postmodern aesthetics, the evolution of Web 2.0, an introduction to TikTok as a platform and a presentation of the term virality help structure our problem area, while subjects such as social media literacy, investigations into why we share content, remixing and memes as well as participatory culture leads to an understanding of content creation and how to make the best content possible for TikTok.
The five key elements found are platform literacy, establishing a presence within relevant communities, designing your content around the ‘internal language’ of these communities, staying consistent and authentic in regards to your content and community engagement and finally converting your audience from TikTok towards more commercial sites. Our model is designed to not be used chronologically, as you consistently should evaluate current content to ensure your future content is of the highest quality and relevance to your audiences.
Further, the study investigates whether virality or community-building is best for growing popularity on TikTok and finds, that TikTok functions best as a community-building platform, with converting your community to other, more commercial platforms later on is the best way of utilising this specific social media platform. Finally, we reflect on our process and how a future approach to this model and investigation could be centred around a more practical approach by working together with content creators and having them actively use the model to test its impact on their professional lives.
Publication date1 Jun 2023
Number of pages135
ID: 532475521