Most TikTok Viral Hits Are Organic, According to New Study – Digital Music News

Photo Credit: Árpád Czapp
A new global report by ContraBrand reveals two-thirds of TikTok’s viral hits are organic in nature. That means no spending on advertising or influencers to promote the content on the platform. Unsurprisingly, artist-generated content was most likely to go viral, followed by user-generated content. Overnight viral success on the platform is also rare–break-out successes tend to happen after at least 18 months on the platform.
An analysis of TikTok’s weekly charts in the first half of 2022 reveals some interesting information. Of the tracks in the TikTok Top 200 that went on to reach one million Spotify streams, 63.8% of them achieved that through organic posting by the artist and TikTok users. Artist-generated content drove 35.5% of those break-out hits–highlighting why AGC is so important to music labels for the platform. Influencer marketing and paid ads on TikTok account for only 9.1% and 2.5% of the cases, respectively.
The study is titled ‘How Artists Are Going Viral on TikTok in 2022.’ It was compiled through an analysis of all 20 of TikTok’s weekly Top 200 tracks by country charts (data provided by Chartmetric) from January 1, 2022, to June 30, 2022. The study specifically looks at music tracks released in 2022 and which songs went on to become an artist’s most-streamed songs in their Spotify catalog. Only songs that reached at least one million streams were considered.
“We first began to realize the power of artist-generated content on TikTok in 2020, and it has since dramatically decreased the cost to break a song for our clients,” says ContraBrand Co-Founder Sean Taylor. “It is arguably the single most powerful method for upcoming artists to not only build a following, but get streams and sell merchandise online without ever having to tour.”


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