If you would’ve told me pretending to be an NPC character on a TikTok live would be the new side hustle, I wouldn’t believe you, but here we are. With the rise of AI-generated content, from AI headshots to AI-generated music, social media has become a place to experiment with the rise of the technology — and as creator Pinkydoll is proving, it’s a great way to make money too.
Pinkydoll (username @pinkydollreal), a TikTok creator who acts as an NPC character on live to get money, has been all over the For You Page. An NPC, or nonplayer character, is a background character in a video game, but the term is also often used to refer to someone who is animated and predictable — and doesn’t seem real. Pinkydoll puts on the mask of an NPC through animated movements and short, laughable phrases in response to gifts from viewers. Think: if a Sims character was a TikTok creator.
The AI-like movements have curated a new trend that is taking over TikTok, but the uniqueness isn’t the only factor drawing people in. If you have been lured into Pinkydoll’s world and have been questioning the financial benefit of it all, let me help you out — here is what Pinkydoll actually makes acting as an NPC on TikTok live. (Is anyone else currently questioning their career choice?)
TikTok pays live creators like Pinkydoll via gifts from viewers.
The biggest way to gain money on a TikTok live is through viewers. If viewers are enjoying what they are seeing, which in Pinkydoll’s case is acting like an NPC, then viewers can reward the creators with gifts. There is a variety of TikTok gifts viewers can choose from, such as fire or a rose. These gifts are bought through coins, which viewers have to pay real money for. The lowest amount of coins you can buy is 70 for $0.74 and the highest is 17,500 for $185. You can also buy a custom amount of coins with a custom amount you are willing to pay.
The more gifts, the better for those on live. After a live, the gifts you receive are converted into diamonds, which is then converted into real money. The diamonds are based on the number of people who gave gifts. The diamonds are worth half of the coins. So, if you got a gift on live that was worth 5,000 coins, you would get 2,500 coins. Each diamond is worth five cents, so that would make you $125.
Pinkydoll’s niche TikTok lives has garnered her plenty of viewers who come bearing gifts. Her animated movements and catchphrases come after she receives the gifts, so viewers are paying for their entertainment. A few quick catchphrases has netted Pinkydoll $7,000 per day from her popular livestreams, according to the Guardian, which sometimes reaches hundreds of thousands of viewers.
TikTok creators are also paid based on the number of viewers.
Listen, you’re not alone if you have fallen victim to the clickbait of TikTok live streams. Whether it be fortune telling or the recent NPC acts, TikTok lives can draw you in, and creators do this to make coin. When they play their cards right, TikTok creators draw people with their clickbait, or even their NPC-esque moves, and this results in more money for them. Beyond TikTok gifts, the app pays creators who hold more than 1,500 followers on live, averaging around $100 for every 10,000 viewers.
For Pinkydoll, who has amassed over 500,000 followers and multiple thousands of viewers per livestream, she is making serious money for being an NPC on live. If you see me acting like a Sim on a TikTok live, no you didn’t.