Do you enjoy creating content for TikTok? This one-of-a-kind social platform has served as a launchpad for a diverse community of creators, including Black artists and creators. We’re breaking down what you need to know to stake your claim as a Black TikTok creator, including:
- How to build your TikTok “brand” and grow your audience of followers
- What the TikTok for Black Creatives incubator program is and how to apply
- How to get started in a fast-paced and competitive industry
These days, you can do more than “make a living” on social media; you can build a lucrative, creatively fulfilling, and enjoyable career online. Although there are many different social media platforms where you can use your skills to establish an audience – and a full-time job – TikTok has emerged as one to watch.
TikTok has mastered the art of short-form mobile video, opening a massive world of content for anyone and everyone that’s interested in logging on. Whether a user wants to see videos about current events, how to cook new food, mental health awareness, and even hilariously adorable animals (plus just about anything else), there’s definitely a TikTok video, a creator, and a hashtag for it.
Black creators, in particular, are making a big impact on the platform, bringing an array of talents and skills to the table. For creatives that are considering a career in video production and social media, getting started on TikTok could very well be the start of a successful future.
How to Build Your Personal Brand on TikTok
One of the biggest challenges on social media is figuring out how to stand out from the crowd. Millions of people create and share videos on TikTok every day, so how can you be sure that yours don’t fade into anonymity?
Whether your long-term goal is to be in front of the camera, behind it, working in post-production, or even marketing the content online, we’ve rounded up a few tips that can help you gain a competitive edge on TikTok.
Learn how to make high-quality, interesting content.
When you’re browsing TikTok, it probably takes you just a few seconds to decide if you’re going to watch a video all the way through. The “For You” page suggests content based on what it’s learned you like, but you still probably swipe right by many of those videos. So, ask yourself this: what is it about a video that will make you want to stay and watch?
The most successful Black creators on TikTok have an impressive ability to capture viewers’ attention right away and then hold onto their interest for the entire video. They have a limited amount of time to communicate what the video is about and why it’s worth watching – and ideally, persuade the user to like, follow, share, and click through to view more of their content.
So, when you’re making your TikTok videos, you need to focus on quality. From the actual content to the video and audio production, it’s worth learning how to present an excellent viewing experience. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you need Hollywood-level equipment and skill, but you do need to have a working knowledge of video production, audio production/editing, and content creation.
Figure out how to get your message out on social media.
For people who want to know how to get famous on TikTok, it’s often surprising to hear that many digital creators’ success is tied to their ability to market themselves online. Digital strategy and social media marketing have become a huge part of building a brand online, even if you aren’t interested in working exclusively as an online marketer.
Look at it this way: you’re basically going to “market” yourself and your TikTok videos in order to connect with the right users at the right time. This could look like sharing your TikTok content to other social media platforms, building a website, and using appropriate hashtags and video captions.
Develop an on-screen presence that will set you apart.
Even on social media platforms like TikTok, the old saying is generally true: be yourself. Today’s online users are smart, and they can usually sense when an online creator isn’t authentic. Don’t be afraid to stay true to your personality, values, and interests when you’re making TikTok content because that’s the best way to build an audience that truly wants what you have to offer.
That being said, it is useful to learn how to be your best self online. For example, the public speaking and presentation skills you learn in our broadcasting programs will come in handy, as will the storytelling concepts you’ll cover in Digital Media Production.
How TikTok is Working to Amplify the Work of Black Creators
There’s no question that Black TikTok-ers is a force to be reckoned with, creating an incredible variety of engaging, unique, and dynamic content to share on the platform. From dancers and music artists to comedians, advocates, and motivational speakers, there’s no shortage of talented people from the Black community on TikTok.
As a part of their effort to elevate the voices of Black creators, TikTok recently launched “TikTok for Black Creatives.” TikTok has selected 100 Black creators and artists to participate in the three-month incubator program in a partnership with MACRO digital media. Some of the most exciting aspects of this program include:
- Financial awards to support education, production equipment, and other content development tools for selected creators
- Town hall-style experiences with top Black entrepreneurs and celebrities
- Community-building forums
- Educational events with TikTok executives
- Various opportunities to expand their personal brand/business online
The first group of participants was selected in early 2021, and the program is expected to be open to new applicants every fall. We’re encouraging students from all our campuses to consider applying when the program reopens soon.
Pursue Your Passion and Achieve Your Goals with an Education in Media
There’s never been a better time to venture into the media industry and create a career that you love, especially because new opportunities, mediums, and platforms emerge every day. Right now, it’s TikTok that’s taking the world by storm; by next year, it’s possible that something completely different will be changing the digital landscape. The good news is that, with creativity, determination, and a true passion for what you do, you can look forward to an exciting, ever-evolving career ahead.
Whether you’re just beginning to consider a career change or have a lifelong dream of working in media, make sure you start your professional journey with the right skills and knowledge you need to get ahead. At the Beonair Network of Media Schools in Miami, Chicago, Colorado, and Ohio, we provide a series of programs designed to give students a competitive edge in the industry. Instructors lead our courses with real-world experience, and students learn both in the classroom and on the “job.” Hands-on experiences, studio training, and industry internships are just some of the ways you can start building your resume right now.
With several accredited program options, we have something to suit your interest and career goals. From Digital Media Production to Media Sales & Marketing, plus our programs for broadcasting, video, and audio production, you can follow the path that leads to the future you want. We also support students in finding specialized industry programs and opportunities, like the TikTok for Black Creatives incubator program – ultimately, our goal is to help you make your dreams a reality.
Are you ready to learn how to become a digital creator? Our schools are ready and waiting for you right now. Request more information about our programs and apply to become a student today!
Featured Image: Rohane Hamilton/Shutterstock