There are so many social media platforms to choose from, so why TikTok? Authors on TikTok have experienced a lot of success because of the large writing community on the site. TikTok works for writers because TikTok trends tend to be funny and creative. Let's dive into more about TikTok and social media trends on the platform.
What is TikTok?
Of all the social media platforms out there at this time, TikTok is the most popular for posting short videos. And that's exactly what it's for. TikTok is a social platform where users can create their own videos and watch other people's creations. These videos are usually under a minute and are at most between 1 and 3 minutes in length, so unlike the kind of videos you tend to see on YouTube, these ones are much shorter.
When TikTok started, it was mostly used for young people doing lip-syncing and dance challenges. The app really became popular during the COVID-19 pandemic, and now it has grown to be a hit, particularly with a young audience. Nowadays, as well as dancing and lip-syncing, TikTok users like to post funny videos and do various challenges.
The main focus of TikTok is videos. Users can create videos and add audio later or choose a piece of audio and make a video of it. TikTok has a wide selection of music to choose from. As well as that, you can use the audio from another person's video.
When putting together videos, users have the option to use effects like slow motion, time-lapse, and different filters. When users post the video, their followers and people who search for related terms can see it.
It's easy to interact with people on TikTok, as users can search topics for or click on hashtags to view more content. Users can even make videos in response to another video. A common trend on TikTok is stitching, which is when a TikTok user uses parts from another video uploaded to TikTok to create their own video. TikTok is particularly popular with teenagers and people in their 20s.
While TikTok can be used by people from any background, in this piece, we will focus on social media trends for authors on TikTok and the benefits of using TikTok for writers.
Why Use TikTok for Writers?
So, what exactly is there for authors on TikTok? Well, despite not being a text-based platform, people trying to make a living out of writing have found that the social media site has provided them with a lot of success.
Towards the end of 2022, there were more than 750,000 searches on TikTok related to writing. The hashtag BookTokhas been viewed hundreds of billions of times. On TikTok, the algorithm is specific to user interaction, so people who use or view #BookTok are more likely to see things with this hashtag as well as other related hashtags. With so many uses of #BookTok, clearly, there is a place on TikTok for writers.
There is a huge community of book lovers and fellow writers on TikTok, with its writing community ever-growing. Using the social media platform is a great way to connect with other authors and promote your work. If you're just starting out promoting yourself as an author on social media, TikTok is the place to start and build up your readership base.
Social media, in general, is a must for marketing yourself and your work. The vast majority of your potential readers have some social media presence, whether it's Instagram, Facebook, or X (formerly Twitter). TikTok is an effective way to reach young people, as its demographic is much younger than other popular sites. It's also a social media platform that has been growing in the past few years.
There are a lot of social media trends for writers using TikTok that will help them reach new demographics. And the great thing about posting on TikTok is that you can share your videos on other social media sites like Instagram.
Using TikTok, you can reach new readers to sell your books to. TikTok is currently one of the best platforms for discovering the kind of content you want, so you won't have to worry about your content being hidden away by the dreaded algorithm. By using hashtags (like #BookTok), people who are interested can find your work.
TikTok Trends for Authors
The big TikTok trends for writers tend to be talking about their own work in creative ways. This will involve sharing your process as a writer and where your ideas came from when writing your book. People like to know your process, so give them a glimpse into your creative side.
Authors on TikTok often talk about other books. Making book recommendations is common. This is particularly effective if you pick books of a similar style and genre as your own because when people see that your work is comparable to what they like, they are more likely to buy it.
A lot of social media trends that come from TikTok revolve around music, dancing, or lip-syncing. So if there's any way of tying in a song with something you've written or your time writing, then that's a good way for authors to get noticed.
Something that followers love on social media is regular updates, so authors on TikTok can take advantage of that by posting about their progress. From showing how they come up with ideas to creating creative videos about doing the writing, authors have a lot of ways to promote themselves on the platform.
5 TikTok Trends for Writers to Follow
- Unboxing: Did you just get your book printed? Then, it's the perfect way to create some content. Film a video of you unboxing a newly printed copy of your book. You can even do this as part of a giveaway.
- Cover Art: Sharing ideas for your cover art is an easy way for authors on TikTok to produce content. It's an effective visual that represents your book and will appeal to your desired readers.
- Tips: Sharing tips for writers is an easy way to produce content. You could make videos with 3–5 tips for fellow writers. This will encourage people who like writing to follow you for more helpful advice, and it will also show them that you are knowledgeable about the subject.
- A Day in the Life: A great way writers make content on TikTok is by putting together videos showing what their day as a writer looks like. These don't have to be serious videos; they could show the funny side of dealing with writer's block or coming up with ideas in the middle of the night.
- Your Book Live: If your book has been published and is in a bookstore or on an online outlet, make a video of yourself going to see it. Either by searching its name or going to a bookstore. This is one way writers get to express themselves by showing their real emotion of being proud of their work.
How to Be Successful on TikTok
So, aside from following the specific TikTok trends for authors, what other good ways can you use TikTok for writers? Like every user of the app, authors on TikTok can ensure they reach more and more of their target audience by using the app well.
Make a LOT of Effort
Building your social media presence on any platform takes work. You have to create regular content and continually engage with other creators and your fans, all while being aware of social media trends.
TikTok for writers is no different, as you need to put in a lot of effort. Authors on TikTok must post regular videos, which they have to shoot and edit themselves. Ideas for videos do not just come from thin air, so creators have to study TikTok trends and come up with ideas for what to make. You also have to reply to people who interact with you and collaborate with other creators to really be successful.
Gaining a following on social media is worth it because it allows you to promote yourself to your audience as well as reach new people. Sometimes writers forget about the marketing side of their work, but that's just it. If you want to make a living from writing, you have to treat it like a job. So, budget some time for marketing yourself on social media and doing so effectively.
The general rule for marketing yourself on social media is 20:80. Of the content you post, only 20% should be promotional, so what about the other 80% of your posts? That large chunk of content you create should be made with the intention of getting engagement. You want to post things that will get you likes, comments, and shares.
This may seem a bit hypocritical. I mean, aren't you always promoting yourself on social media? In a way, yes, but what this breakdown means is that most of our content should not be plugging your work as an author.
The majority of your posts should be ones that get engagement from your followers. Things like asking them questions or entertaining them in some way. TikTok is great because people can use the content of your videos to respond to you, thus sharing your work.
By getting high levels of engagement, the times when you actually do promote content will reap more rewards because you will have garnered more interest from your followers. So avoid spamming people with videos about your latest book.
Nowadays, social media is one of the biggest ways people interact, and people want to feel like they are part of a community on social media sites. Building a relationship with your followers is important because it makes them feel like they are a part of your journey.
You can also do this with other content creators by collaborating with them. It's worth trying to build a relationship with other writers on TikTok so that you can promote each other's work. Reply and react to each other's videos, and practice stitching like we mentioned earlier.
And make sure to reply and react to those commenting on your posts. This will encourage them to keep doing so.
When it comes to social media trends, hashtags are your friends. There are specific hashtags that work for authors on TikTok, like #BookTok and #WritersLife, so you use them in your post. Every one of your posts should have five relevant hashtags underneath it.
Using hashtags wisely will help users discover your work. Do some research by looking at what other hashtags people use for TikTok trends that revolve around TikTok for writers.
When you have the same hashtag that other people use on one of their videos, your post will show up for those who click on the hashtag (#) and will be recommended for people who consume a lot of media based around that hashtag.
The great thing about social media is that you can reach people from all over the world. But that doesn't mean you should overlook your local area. Authors on TikTok will often post about life in their city or state. This, again, helps build a sense of community. It also helps followers see the behind-the-scenes life of a writer.
When you promote yourself, start in your local area and move outward rather than trying to reach around the globe with your first post.
Ideas for Authors on TikTok
TikTok is the place to be for authors, but it requires a lot of creativity. Here are some ideas we've come up with for how authors can post about their writing journey:
- Cosplay as characters from your book. This is a fun way to show readers what you had in mind when writing your different characters. Cosplays (short for costume play) are a popular social media trend where people dress up. You could even challenge readers to cosplay as your characters to get engagement.
- TikTok trends tend to be funny, so one you could try is poorly describing famous books. Use vague and imperfect descriptions so people who are big readers will have fun guessing the books you are describing.
- Show how you get over your writing block. This is a good chance to use rug-pull humor by setting up the video as if it's going to be constructive but really offering a ludicrous solution to something authors on TikTok know all too well.
- Practice pitching your book to an alien. See how much over-explaining you have to do to get the concept of what you've written across.
TikTok, for writers, is a place of fun, so get creative with how you show off your work.
There's a lot of success to be had on TikTok for writers, and by paying attention to TikTok trends, you can make sure that you're reaching new fans. Authors on TikTok have had a lot of success, so join them!