A #GenX view of Tiktok

TikTok. ‘What? That’s absurd. And vulgar. And ridulous…and I would never…’ Said every mom, everywhere.

And then quarantine happened…

And now we’re all there. So many different generations. So many different lifestyles. So many different views. So, let’s talk about it! What you can expect, and NOT expect…what you can do there, and why you might end up loving it as much as I do. What we’re not going to discuss here? The security concerns. I’m just not even touching that subject. That’s an entire soapbox for another day. I will say this: Before you download ANY app on your phone or device, do your research and make an educated decision for yourself.

Now, before you read any further: I made my first video in March. I am not an expert on TikTok, social media, algorithms, stats, etc…I’m also #over40 (if you are on TikTok, that # might be funny to you…but if you’re not, it’s probably not…)

Why I did it.

A friend kept telling me to…like REPEATEDLY. TELLING ME TO TRY IT! And I didn’t want to. I fought it. I didn’t want something else to keep up with. Another platform? Another thing to maintain? Finally, I was like what the heck. Let’s check it out. So, I downloaded the app. Followed some people, laughed, spent WAY too much time on it (don’t worry, that will pass…you’ll find some balance.). Then I made my first video and started interacting with people.

Why I stayed.

Laughs. Community. People like me. People different than me. Simplicity. Quick content. No politics. No pressure. Did I mention laughs?

I have spent HOURS literally ROLLING LAUGHING. Who doesn’t need something like that in their life? I’m not talking about laughing AT people, I’m talking about laughing at jokes, laughing WITH people, laughing at myself…and at the the fact that I’m not the only person dealing with all the things…

I found my tribe. Y’all, this is app is SO TRAINABLE…basically, if you like a person’s videos, videos with certain types of content, sounds, song bites, etc…you’re going to see more of the same. But not ALL THE SAME. Read that again…I found people that I relate to so well, or that I simply ENJOY interacting with that are so much like me, and SO MANY that so much NOT LIKE ME! But, guess what? We all have many of the same struggles, the same thoughts, the same joys, the same feelings, the same weird sense of humor…we’re all just humans…trying to get by. You can see my profile and take a look at the people I follow: https://www.tiktok.com/@messybunmafia

Do you see the diversity there? The commonalities?

Now, when I say ‘trainable’, that’s not to say that something undesirable to me isn’t going to occassionally pop up in my feed. But, here’s the thing…it’s so easy to just move on like it’s not even there. And find something that makes you smile.

And it’s so simple to use! You can spend 30 seconds making a video and walk away. Or, spend an hour making something absolutely PERFECT…whatever works for you! It’s just there. And easy. And so much fun. There’s a little bit of a learning curve if you want to do certain things (you’ll see when you get there), but literally, it’s just a few clicks to make a video. You don’t have to do anything fancy. At all.

If you struggle coming up with creative or unique content, TikTok is your new best friend, ok? LITERALLY the best videos are using someone else’s sound clips or songs. You can replicate what you saw exactly, or put your own unique spin on things…and you’re done! It’s DONE! Done. Done. So much fun. You can have a ‘niche’, or NOT! Most people are all over the place, but many have a niche and style of content that you expect to see when they roll across your feed. Both types of creators/accounts are successful, engaging and fun. I have exhausted myself trying to make YouTube videos that get very few views. I’ve decided recently to CONTINUE that, but with the intention of making those videos for the benefit my current customer base and potential customers that are already engaging with me elsewhere…like how tos, and a few extra tips, tricks and strategies. I simply cannot compete for views with the larger creators. It’s my reality.

Other platforms can get a little exhausting with politics. EXHAUSTING. Of course, there’s the occasional comical sound bite…and, well…you can just imagine some of the funnies…but that’s just it…it’s mostly just funnies. No attacks. Now, this week of course, and rightfully so, there’s a lot #blacklivesmatter support and things related to George Floyd (RIP). But, that’s a humanity situation. And it has generated even more unity and connection. Before this, there was rarely anything very serious. But, this topic deserves to be taken seriously and to be addressed. Every one has feelings about it, everyone is learning, and, for the most part, I see creators standing together. It’s a good thing.

You truly, truly, truly get to JUST BE YOURSELF! Listen, I market hair accessories. I’m NOT that girl…the one with the perfect hair, the one that you all want to look like, or even the one that takes the perfect selfie regardless of what I look like. I’m not, and never will be, an ‘influencer’ as we now know that term. (If you are, or want to be, an ifluencer, KUDOS to you! Those ladies are KILLING IT and working their butts off! I don’t want to diminish that…) The bottom line is, I don’t have that ‘it’ factor…I don’t ‘fit’ the mold. But do any of us, really? Very, very few.

One of the regular videos I create, is me pouring my coffee every morning with a thought for that morning. Sometimes it’s a planned message, sometimes it just happens, sometimes it’s just a ‘good morning’. Type of video. This is usually done within five minute of me rolling out bed. Literally. I mean, where else can you do THAT and people actually want to see it??? Here’s the most popular one that was completely accidental: https://www.tiktok.com/@messybunmafia/video/6822988118417771782

And, here is today’s coffee pouring that turned out great..and…again, purely accidental. https://www.tiktok.com/@messybunmafia/video/6834091442328145158?lang=en

You don’t have to have a TikTok account to view it…don’t worry. It was one of those days where I just had ZERO mojo, and in rolls my daughter to make my life amazing. Because that’s pretty much what she does. Most of my videos get around 150-200 views…that one got 13.8K…I can’t even imagine.

So…look at your other platforms…IG, FB page, even your blog…

I mean, I’m ECSTATIC if I get 25+ views on a video! Seriously! It has taken me almost 2 years to get over 600 followers on IG (PLEASE for the LOVE DO NOT TELL ME HOW I CAN GET THAT NUMBER UP! I AM ALL ABOUT ORGANIC, REAL FOLLOWERS!). In less than three months, I have over 1,000 followers on TikTok!

So, if you’re ready, go for it! check it out…don’t be afraid! Follow: #tiktoptips and people will show up in your feed that will teach you tips and tricks for using the app. One of my favorites:

https://www.tiktok.com/@michelle_debenport

I will come back to this post ASAP and add a couple more for you to follow for tips – I just can’t find them at the moment. 💜

I think that’s about it! I actually started this post yesterday, got interrupted, and I’m pretty sure there were other things I wanted to share! Let me know if you have any questions, AND if you’re on TikTok, let me know so I can follow you!

Much love,

Cindi

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