I have been putting off getting on the TikTok bandwagon for years now, despite my friends’ constant reminders to download it and their amazement of how long I’ve resisted. Naturally, I have seen TikToks reposted on other social media platforms, like Twitter and Instagram, so I am not totally unfamiliar with the content on the platform. However, with the new Instagram Reels feature, I have actually managed to find some creators there that I enjoy watching and have followed as a result. So I figured after all this time, I might as well finally get on the app to see what it was all about.
Once I downloaded it, I started off by setting up my profile and picking a username (it’s @julia_greenwood if you wanna give me a follow hehe). Then, I started scrolling through my For You page (also abbreviated as FYP if you aren’t aware), and so far was pretty unimpressed. This was mostly because the content seemed pretty generic and not suited to my personal interests. However, once I began to follow some of the creators I found through Instagram Reels, as well as engage with content I did enjoy on my FYP, I slowly started to see that change.
The creators I followed varied by niche, though I’ll give them all a shoutout because their content is the main reason I decided to join the app:
@once.upon.a.tory and @jjniemann, both post lots of broadway/theatre content that makes me smile
@mrthomasenglish, who shares what it’s like to be an English (British) English Teacher, Teaching in the US (I’m not even an education major, I just find his content hilarious)
@thetiabeestokes, an amazing mother of 5 who has been dancing her way through battling cancer
@skincarebyhyram, who gives amazing product recommendations while also making funny skincare-related content
@hcumassamherst, no explanation needed, but you should definitely follow us if you aren’t already *subtle wink*
As for the other content I started to like, I was almost immediately brought into Massachusetts/New England TikTok, which obviously I related to since I’ve grown up in the area. Then, as a result of what I assume must be the algorithm taking into account the content from the people I followed, I was slowly cycled into the general theatre and Disney sides of TikTok, which I also enjoyed a lot!
The week continued to roll by, and I did my best to at least spend an hour on the app per day, so my FYP would continue to personalize itself. Soon enough, the Disney content led me to the Harry Potter side of TikTok, and also a side I would label as nostalgia, which includes content that mentions Disney and Nickelodeon shows most of us grew up with. Additionally, @mrthomasenglish’s content seemed to bring me to the whole high school administrator side (mostly featuring @heytonytv, who never fails to crack me up), along with general college student content. Finally, most recently I was brought onto retail worker TikTok, which I think happened because of one particular video I liked earlier that same day. Luckily, since I have worked retail in the past, I have enjoyed seeing those videos, and look forward to seeing what other types of content I will be exposed to in the future!
So, after using TikTok for a week, what are my final thoughts? Considering I was on it for such a long time last night that it gave me a ‘reminder’ to take a break, I think it’s safe to say I have enjoyed being on the app way more than I thought I would. As I continue to use it in the coming weeks, I look forward to seeing what other types of content it will expose me to, while also hopefully finding new creators I enjoy! Plus, I have only just started to experiment with creating content myself, so that will also be a whole separate adventure. Bottom line, if you were like me and have been resisting the temptation of the TikTok universe, it might be time to just give in. While you might be able to find some of the content on other platforms, TikTok really knows how to blend all your likes together to create a relevant content selection just for you. Now what are you waiting for? Stop reading, go give it a download, and start scrolling to your heart's content!