It’s funny how we set goals and expectations, and we may even have steps that we think we will take to reach those goals. Have you ever heard that expression, “we plan and God laughs”? I now understand what that means. Earlier this year, my Gen Z cousin told me to get on TikTok. She kept telling me I needed to get on their so my business could blow up. In my mind, I’m like “girl, ain’t nothing about me viral material”. I created a TikTok account last year, but didn’t use it. I didn’t fully understand the platform and the geriatric Millennial in me (who came up with these labels though?) didn’t really have the capacity to learn anything new.
Fast forward to Sunday, September 26, 2021. I was sitting in my booth at the Black Girls Craft Conference and Expo at the Cobb Galleria in the ATL. The crowd was slow, as most attendees were in session. A couple weeks prior, I heard a tune on TikTok that was totally relatable, having experienced disappointment from potential customers when they learned about my prices. And even though I’ve never experienced someone questioning my prices, I know that this is not an uncommon experience for crafters, especially those who sell finished crochet and knit items. After I heard the track, I decided to record my dye process so I could make an honest attempt at creating a TikTok.
Back to the Cobb Galleria. It was pretty early in the morning, not quite 9am, as I sat and carefully pieced together this TikTok. I reviewed it a few times and admittedly had a moment of pause, wondering if my followers and customers would be offended, but I decided to post anyway, because I knew my intent was only good humor. By that evening, my video had over 5,000 views! My mind was blown. Up until that point, I had less than 70 followers with maybe twice as many likes. The next morning, my followers grew to 168 and the videos views were over 10k!
I decided to keep using TikTok and posted a few more videos, some related to my process and some just in good ol’ fun (like my reaction video to watching “Squid Games”). In just over three weeks, my video has hit over 3,000,000 views, 349 shares, and now have 13.5k followers! Not just that, but my website traffic exploded and I’ve gained new Instagram followers AND customers. Needless to say, I’m going to keep making TikTok content, but I also hope to crack the Instagram code one day.