How to Go Viral on TikTok: The Insider’s Guide to Four Game-Changing Algorithms

July 5, 2024
5 min read

1. What Does TikTok Want From You?

The New York Times previously analyzed TikTok’s algorithm in an article, referring to internal documents from TikTok. According to these sources, TikTok's algorithm is driven by four main goals: user value, long-term user value, creator value, and platform value. It is noted that TikTok, aiming for the company's ultimate goal of increasing daily active users, selectively optimizes two closely intertwined metrics: "retention rate"—whether users return—and "visit duration." The app is designed to keep you engaged for as long as possible.The New York Times also created a diagram to illustrate this.

tiktok algorithms, newyork times,

2. TikTok's Four Core Algorithms

2.1 Traffic Pool AlgorithmThe traffic pool algorithm introduces new users to TikTok through a small test pool of 100 to 500 views to evaluate their interests based on their interactions like watching, liking, and commenting. Successful engagement leads to promotion to larger pools, enhancing visibility and impact. This algorithm adjusts dynamically, and maintaining high engagement is crucial for sustained visibility.

2.2 User Interest AlgorithmThis algorithm tailors video recommendations by analyzing data from user interactions and profiles. It adapts to personal tastes by recommending content that aligns with individual preferences, thereby enhancing user engagement and content discovery on the platform.

2.3 User Collaboration AlgorithmFocusing on shared user interests, this algorithm suggests content that multiple users with similar preferences might enjoy. It enhances user experience by promoting videos that resonate more personally, fostering longer engagement and social interactions.

2.4 Popular Tag AlgorithmThis algorithm showcases content from trending tags, independent of a user's prior interactions. It quickly adapts to global trends, offering users content related to popular and emerging topics, thus keeping the platform dynamic and relevant.

3 How to Go Viral on TikTok? Do's and Don'ts

For TikTok creators, TikTok shop sellers, and those aiming to make an impact on TikTok live, optimizing your TikTok content to align with TikTok's algorithm is crucial. Here are some actionable tips:


3.1 Keep Up with TikTok Trends, Use Trending Hashtags!

tiktok official trending hashtags |

No matter the nature of your brand, being aware of current trends and swiftly capitalizing on them is crucial. While TikTok's trends are driven by user interests, they are also a component of how the TikTok algorithm operates. Videos from various content communities and styles are adopted and promoted by the TikTok algorithm, resulting in exponential growth. Thus, if you aspire for your videos to have greater impact, closely following trends and crafting content accordingly is an excellent strategy. Always use relevant or trending hashtags. Link here

algorithm-friendly tiktok tag generator |

We also highly recommend using our TikTok tag generator to create suitable tags for you. Simply choose an appropriate trending hashtag from the official trending hashtags recommended by TikTok, enter this trending tag as the base tag into the generator, select the number of hashtags you wish to generate, and let AI create relevant hashtags for you based on TikTok's algorithm and style. Give it a try!

Tiktok Video: Hashtags

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3.2 Focus on the First 3 Seconds—They’re the Most Crucial! The content of your video must be straightforward, visually impactful, and engaging within the first 3 seconds to capture and retain the audience's attention. Using a free video editing tool, you can ensure that these initial moments are polished and attention-grabbing, setting the tone for the rest of your video and maximizing viewer engagement.

3.3 Ensure Your Videos Are Watched to the End! If the majority of your audience watches your videos completely, the TikTok algorithm will continuously recommend your content, creating a snowball effect, thus exposing your video to a broader audience and facilitating viral dissemination. The completion rate of your videos is a critical metric used by the TikTok algorithm to determine whether your content resonates with the audience. If most viewers only watch the first few seconds of a video before swiping away, the video is likely to be deemed "unengaging" or "irrelevant to the audience." Therefore, to secure recommendations from the TikTok algorithm, it's crucial that your videos are watched to the end.

3.4 Engagement: Interact with Your Audience and Similar Content. Given TikTok's inclination to keep users active on the platform, the algorithm prioritizes engagement, primarily through likes and comments. Actively participating in the interactions of others is an effective way to boost your own engagement. TikTok's algorithm is personalized, meaning that it not only displays content that users are likely to enjoy but also shows similar users' videos to them. Hence, it's beneficial to identify your content niche, engage with videos that share similar themes to yours, and thereby reach your target audience, laying a solid foundation for your future video releases.Three to five hashtags are generally recommended as the optimal range for enhancing discoverability.

3.5 Embrace Native TikTok Features. Whether it's filming directly within the app or utilizing features like Stitches or Duets, staying native can offer a competitive edge. For more advanced editing options, use CapCut, which is owned by TikTok’s parent company, Bytedance.

3.6 Incorporate Keywords into Your Captions. Add engaging, conversation-starting captions to your videos and include relevant keywords to boost visibility and interaction.


3.7 Avoid Continuously Deleting Videos. Even if you are dissatisfied with your past works, resist the urge to delete them. Everyone improves over time, and preserving traces of your past is crucial. Your followers appreciate authenticity and want to see the real you. From an algorithmic perspective, although some videos may initially have low viewership in the first 24 hours after posting, TikTok may give your videos a second push later on, potentially moving your content into the next traffic pool a week later. This phenomenon is sometimes referred to as "delayed exposure." Continuously deleting videos can lead the TikTok algorithm to assess your account as frequently posting low-quality content, thus negatively impacting your account's standing. Accounts perceived as low-quality have difficulty advancing to higher-tier traffic pools.

3.8 Do Not Purchase Followers. Many accounts aiming for promotion on TikTok often resort to purchasing followers to boost perceived influence and profits. However, TikTok employs a unique fan detection mechanism and algorithm, and accounts that suddenly acquire a large number of inauthentic followers risk being banned. Therefore, to curry favor with the TikTok algorithm, it's best to rely on high-quality content for effective and genuine dissemination, rather than artificially inflating your account's "influence" by buying followers. You can legitimately increase your follower count through TikTok for business advertising.

3.9 Do Not Frequently Alter the Focus of Your Content, Confounding the TikTok Algorithm's Understanding of Your Content's Theme. Consistency in the style or domain of the content you post is key. Regularly posting content within a specific vertical can help the TikTok algorithm develop a clear user profile, enabling more precise targeting of content to users likely interested in it. If you abruptly change the nature of your content, the mismatch with the established user profile may prompt the TikTok algorithm to reevaluate and potentially reset your account's standing based on the new content. Thus, maintaining consistency in the type of content you post is an effective strategy for nurturing your account.Whether you are a TikTok creator or a seller, these tips can guide you in enhancing your TikTok videos., as an AI tool serving multichannel sellers, has specifically tailored a toolbox for TikTok, including tools for TikTok influencer/creator email generation, TikTok product video hashtag generation, TikTok LIVE scripts, and TikTok shop product listings generation. Explore all the necessary tools for TikTok here:

AI powered tiktok toolbox |

4.Other Useful AI Tools for TikTok

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