The algorithm… if there’s one word that can raise a creator’s blood pressure, then it’s the A word!
In a nutshell – the TikTok algorithm governs everything about the social media platform. It’s also unpredictable and ever-changing. Once you think you’ve got a handle on how the TikTok algorithm works, it switches up. Because of this, it can sometimes seem like you’ve wasted valuable time and energy trying to make the algorithm work for you. But don’t worry, it’s not all doom and gloom. Here’s our top tips to maximise your reach…
Even though TikTok’s algorithm is complex, you can still make it work for your account. Producing quality content, engaging with your audience, and jumping on the right trends can expand your profile’s reach and earn you more followers, even despite the algorithm’s many changes.
So how does the TikTok algorithm work?
The TikTok algorithm determines how much visibility and engagement your content gets. TikTok uses interactions to gauge the type of content a user wants to see. The more a user likes, shares, and comments on your videos, the more your content will appear on the platform’s For You page (FYP).
Following that logic, if a user hides a creator or marks a video as “not interested,” the algorithm will not show them that creator’s content or similar videos as much.
TikTok wants to keep users engaged and prevent them from closing the app, so it personalises content recommendations to match users’ interests. For example, if you’re a fan of food content, your feed will be full of food creators and related content. It’s a formula that works and it’s exactly why many people love the platform in the first place.
It will then analyse your videos’ information, by using meta information, like hashtags, song titles, and captions, to show relevant results when users search for specific content in the Discover tab.
What is not included in the TikTok algorithm?
The TikTok algorithm will not distribute:
- Duplicate content.
- Content that viewers have already seen.
- Content that the algorithm flags as spam, or that viewers tag as “not interested.”
- Potentially upsetting content like graphic videos.
Now that you have a grasp of how the TikTok algorithm works, let’s dive into the ins and outs of making it work for you.
Our TikTok algorithm tips to get more reach
Many TikTok creators think they need to have a ton of followers to reach a large audience on the platform, but this isn’t always true.
According to TikTok, “while a video is likely to receive more views if posted by an account that has more followers, by virtue of that account having built up a larger follower base, neither follower count nor whether the account has had previous high-performing videos are direct factors in the recommendation system.”
In other words, your videos can amass thousands of views even if you have just a handful of followers. Whether your audience is big or small, you can use these tips to get more views on your TikTok content.
Tap into TikTok subcultures
TikTok has numerous subcultures built around specific niches, from everyday subjects like fitness (#FitTok) to eccentric corners like #WitchTok. Creating content within a subculture is one of the easiest ways to get the TikTok algorithm to amplify your content to the right audience.
For example, if you consistently create workout videos, the algorithm will place these videos on the For You pages of TikTok users who typically engage with fitness content, allowing you to reach a larger, targeted audience beyond your followers.
Adding hashtags to your TikTok videos increases the chances your content will be discovered through the search feature, which lets you amass views from TikTok users who don’t follow you, just like on Instagram.
The TikTok algorithm uses hashtags to categorise content, so users are delivered relevant videos when using the search function.
While it might sound obvious – just because hashtags help you get more TikTok views, that doesn’t mean you should add a bunch of random ones to your TikTok videos. To fully leverage the power of the algorithm, you should only use hashtags that are relevant to your content.
For instance, don’t add #cookingtips to a video about your new office dance that your colleagues have mastered, even if the hashtag is trending.
TikTok doesn’t have an official limit on the number of hashtags you can include in each post, but most creators advise that you use only 3 to 5 hashtags per post.
Jump on relevant trends early
TikTok trends are so powerful that they often spread beyond the app and create buzz on other social media platforms.
Creating content around TikTok trends is a smart way to get your videos in front of new audience segments, especially if you don’t have many followers. In addition to placing trending videos on TikTok users’ For You pages, the algorithm categorises trends in the Discover tab, where users go to find new content, which helps these videos gain a ton of traction.
There are many ways to find what’s trending on TikTok:
- Check the Discover Tab to find trend categories.
- Search the TikTok Creative Center to find trending songs and viral sounds in your region.
- Follow #trendalert to stay updated on TikTok trends as they drop.
Before jumping on a trend, make sure it checks two boxes: relevance and timing.
Finally – keep posting consistently! How often you put out content affects how the TikTok algorithm distributes your content. Consistent creators are more likely to have their videos on the For You page than creators who post only once in a blue moon.
“As much as, sometimes, we experience low engagement and all of that, it’s still good to create content regularly. It shows you’re serious with the platform and then the algorithm can promote your videos,” Owate says.
TikTok recommends that you post 1 to 4 times per day for the best results. However, many creators say the most important thing is sticking with a regular posting schedule, even if you can’t put out multiple videos a day.
“You don’t have to post every day on TikTok, but try to post at least 2 to 3 times a week,” says TikTok content creator Adeife Adeoye.
While reach is just one part of the algorithm among many things to consider, start implementing these tips into your strategy today, and you’ll be sure to see improved results.
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