Last month, I wrote about how news outlets are trying to reach a younger audience by engaging with them via Tik Tok. Here, Social Media and Engagement Manager Autumn Lewis talks about the recent successes she has been having via their Tik Tok platform at the Norwich Evening News.

Tik Tok home page

TikTok has quickly risen through the ranks and is now the third-largest social media network, it’s no wonder that businesses are moving into this platform to target the younger demographic and to increase the longevity of their brands. 

As the Social Media & Engagement Manager for Archant, I am certainly looking at TikTok to take our social media to the next level. There is a huge gap in the market for regional news to takeover TikTok and get local community news in front of a younger audience. 

Regional news has found a comfortable place with the traditional social platforms such as, Facebook and Twitter. However, these channels have uncertainty around them as to whether they are sustainable amongst a younger demographic. With the rise of Instagram and TikTok, it’s time that regional publishers start putting more efforts into these other platforms.  

60% of TikTok’s audience are 16-24 years old and national publishers such as BBC, The Telegraph and Daily Mail have shown the hunger for news on this platform which is proven by their large following and view stats. They have shown that publishers don’t need to change their branding to fit in with a younger audience, we just need to package our news up and present it to them a little differently to what we are used to.  

At Archant, we’ve seen the benefits of using TikTok to reach and engage with not only a younger audience, but a brand-new audience to us. 

In March this year, we constructed a social strategy for the Norwich Evening News to make its debut on TikTok. We launched the TikTok on International Women’s Day and celebrated the local women working in our newsroom and even did a viral TikTok dance.  

From there, our goal was to increase brand visibility amongst our new audience. We posted twice a day, every day, for 30 days and we then started seeing big results.  

Our content varied between jumping on TikTok trends, celebrating Norwich and what’s on content. We’ve kept it light-hearted and fun to showcase everything you can do in Norwich with a few playful trends here and there. The more we posted, the more we understood what our audience wanted to see from us and from there we built our TikTok from the ground up.  

In our first month, we accumulated over 1,000 followers on this platform and multiple videos were watched by over 30,000 people.

TikTok can be difficult when growing your following as the visibility comes from the FYP (For You Page) in the app. Users spend the majority of the time on the FYP as the feed has been curated based on what TikTok suggests what the viewer may like. There is so much content going into this part of the app by multiple users so you really need to make an impact and grab their attention. With social media platforms now just a place to scroll, we aim to capture their attention within the first two seconds and keep them on our video and profile.  

TikTok is an exciting platform for publishers because there is so much opportunity for growth and trying something a bit different to typical social media practice. We’ve very much kept our Norwich Evening News TikTok fun and enticing initially and it’s working well for us, but it’s not to say we won’t move into sharing harder news on this platform. With the potential virality of TikTok there are unlimited opportunities with what publishers can do and I think it’s an exciting chance to see something different from local publishers.  

With the fast results we’ve seen from Norwich Evening News on Tiktok, we are now looking to extend our efforts for our other daily newspaper titles.