If you’re trying to understand the importance of TikTok in the ever-changing Universe of social media, look no further than this example.
On the 18th January 2021, a charming New Zealander took to TikTok, hat on head and bevvies in hand, to make his first video. Within seconds, he’d shocked viewers by downing a sizeable glass in a single gulp, before moving on to vortex a bottle in mere moments.
It was a real blink-and-you’ll-miss-it talent that was an instant hit on the platform, which is chiefly driven by entertaining viral content. The video performed quite well, and within a very brief period of time (I’m talking days, here) thatkiwiguyy was taking requests from users eager to see him replicate the trick with their favourite beverages.
In no time at all, other TikTok users were ‘dueting’ with thatkiwiguyy, fruitlessly challenging him and piggybacking off his success. He became an overnight sensation, with his extremely short-form content receiving an overwhelmingly positive reception on the platform. The requests came thick and fast, with fans calling for thatkiwiguyy to sink bottles of milk, alcohol, soda, and even pickle juice.
At one point, thatkiwiguyy sat atop a jet ski, lowered a bottle into the river water beneath him, and carried out his trademark vortex ability. The bottle was emptied down his throat in seconds.
By the earliest days of February, thatkiwiguyy was celebrating two thousand followers, but he certainly wasn’t about to quit. One week later, he’d acquired ten thousand followers.
Another week, forty thousand followers.
ONE DAY LATER, thatkiwiguyy had 185,000 followers. And the counter showed no sign of slowing down.
One more week went by, and thatkiwiguyy had amassed more than 800,000 followers. By March 11th, less than two months after he’d published his first video, thatkiwiguyy was celebrating one million followers on TikTok, and almost ten million likes on his videos.
The sponsorship deals were rolling in, and he was wasting no time in representing some of his favourite brands. However, it all started, and persisted, with one young man from New Zealand sinking bivvies in front of a camera. That’s it — no elaborate special effects, no hour-long productions, and no support team behind him.
THAT is the power of TikTok, and of social media in general.
If you have a talent, or that one viral idea, it can be the making of you on TikTok, and it takes such a short time to achieve popularity. Admittedly, it’s a platform for the younger generation, but so many organisations and brands are getting involved with the platform.
It’s a fantastic visual platform that allows you to connect effortlessly with your audience, and it is easily the biggest thing out there right now. If a man drinking quickly can amass one million followers in seven weeks, imagine what you could do with a little time and effort.
Here’s to thatkiwiguyy — congratulations on the one million milestone.