How to Create your First TikTok Video

May 21, 2020 / by

How to create your first tiktok video FB featured image

Are you thinking about joining the TikTok frenzy that has taken the world by storm? Well you’ve come to the right blog! In this article you’re going to learn how to publish your very first TikTok from start to finish. 

We’ll go over recording, editing, and effects to create eye catching videos to target to your audience. 

#1 Get Acquainted with the TikTok Interface.

TikTok has almost 1 billion active users. With that many users, there are bound to people looking for a business just like yours to connect with.  

If you are new to TikTok, it will be important to start with understanding the interface. Upon opening the app, you will see two feeds. The first feed is the ‘For You’ section, in this feed there will be no telling what you will see. 

The ‘For You’ page is where users usually spend 75% of their time on the app. The best way to describe this feed is that it’s a cross between the Instagram Explore page and the Facebook news feed. You’ll see a wide variety of content here. It will feature popular content, brand-new content, and content that may soon go viral. 

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The more time you spend on TikTok, the more this “For You” Page will be tailored to you and your interests. 

Next to the ‘For You’ feed, is the ‘Following’ feed. This is where you’ll see the content of TikTok accounts you chose to follow. 

ProTip: A great way to get started is by following accounts of brands, businesses, and influencers in a similar niche to your own brands. 

#2: Record Your First TikTok Video

At the very bottom of the screen do you see the plus sign? Tap that. This is the first step to recording/posting your first TikTok video!

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TikTok lets you record (and upload) 15-60 second videos. You can choose the length at the bottom of the recording screen.

I’d recommend starting with 15 second videos to get the hang of everything. 

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(Photos from Social Media Examiner)

Select Recording Features

On the recording screen, you’ll see a ton of great features that allow you to record and edit within the TikTok app. Let’s start with the features on the right of the screen and head down. 

The first option is the flip functionality. This functionality lets you switch between the front and back cameras on your phone.

Next up is ‘Speed,’ which allows you to control the playback speed of your videos. If you record a video at 3x speed, you will record a lot slower but playback three times as fast. If you record at 0.3x speed, it will record very fast and then be slowed down in final playback. This may seem kind of confusing when you are reading it, but will make much more sense when you actually start playing with it. 

After the speed option, you have the ‘Beauty Filter.’ This will take out lines and blemishes in your face. Be careful though, because in the wrong lighting it can create an unnatural look. 

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The next option is the ‘Filters’ option. These filters are similar to anything you may see on Instagram or other basic photo editing apps. You can select a filter that works with your video, and blend it in until you are content.  

Pro Tip: If you want to keep a certain aesthetic for all your videos, consider using the same type of filter. But don’t be afraid to venture outside of the box and make each video look unique. Moral of the story: find what works for you and your content! The options are at your disposal. 

The ‘Timer’ option is a great feature because it allows you to record hands-free. First decide whether you need a 3 or 10 second head start. Then go for it!

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When you tap ‘Start countdown’ the clock starts running, so make sure you put the phone down and get in position for when the recording starts.

Incorporate Visual Effects

A lot of the magic happens in the effects section. They make it easy to be creative and put out some really visually entertaining content. 

By tapping the ‘Effects’ icon to the left of the record button, a panel opens with a variety of effects to choose from. Let’s look at some of the options. 

One of the most popular effects is Green Screen, which allows you to add different backgrounds to your video. You can use any picture you want, whether it’s a picture of Europe, or a photo of your face! 

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As you can see there are tons of different effects for you to use with your videos. If you want to have clones of yourself copying your every move in the background, you got it! Take some time to explore the different effects and start getting creative. 

Pro Tip: An effect can help emphasize a certain moment in a video. You can even use different effects for seperate parts of the TikTok video. There is a multi-functional timer that lets you control this option. 

Choose a Sound (Music and Audio Clips)

Next let’s look at ‘Sounds.’ At the top of the screen you’ll see the ‘Sounds’ option. Click this to add music or an audio clip to your videos. 

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In this library, you can search for sounds, look through playlists, and choose from TikTok-recommended music.

However, you don’t need to use music or other sound clips in your TikTok video. That’s because you can simply use your own recording! All you have to do is hit the record button and the microphone in your phone will pick up your audio. Then when the video is posted, your audio will be available for others to use in their TikToks. 

Use Text to Add to Your Narrative

When you are reviewing your video before publishing, you can add text and sticker overlays. (You can also add effects, but not as much as in pre-production).

A text overlay can add a narrative to your video. 

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Pro Tip: Believe it or not, most people are watching 61 minutes per day with the sound on. So, the text should simply add a little extra flavor.

To add text, tap the ‘Text’ icon at the bottom of your screen and add your desired text. When you click off the text you’ve added, you have the option to pinch and resize or drag it to another part of the screen.

To change the font, tap to select the text, and choose ‘Edit’ from the pop-up menu.

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You can choose from various typefaces and choose from various color options. 

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If you tap the ‘[A]’ icon, it will put a bold border around your text, which will help it stand out on busy backgrounds. 

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#3: Create and Caption Your TikTok Video Post

When you’re satisfied with your TikTok video, hit the ‘Next’ button to move to the screen to add the final touches before posting. This is where you will add a caption, hashtags, and choose a cover image. 

Add a Caption

Similar to Twitter, there is a character limit for your caption. The character limit is 150, and that includes the hashtags you add. Try to keep your caption short and sweet. Add keywords to help TikTok know who to put your video in front of. 

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Pro Tip: Be sure to double check that everything is correct because once you publish your TikTok video, you can’t go back and edit the caption. 

Choose Hashtags

After a caption is added, add hashtags. Try using hashtags that are mostly niched down, to improve discoverability. When you press ‘#,’ TikTok auto-populates a bunch of hashtag options that make it easier to find niche hashtags to match your post. Experiment with some #keywords and see what TikTok auto-populates.

When you’re first starting to build your account, try using smaller hashtags, around five or six figure search counts. The reason is because there is a smaller amount of people with which you are competing for visibility.

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Select a Cover

The next step will be to select a cover image. Go to the top right of the screen where you see a thumbnail of your video and tap ‘Select cover.’ This will bring up a slider where you can scroll through your video to select a cover.

It is best to choose a cover that will pique people’s interest just by seeing the image. You want them to think to themselves, “what’s going on here?” or “Oh, this looks interesting!”

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#4: Post Your Video to TikTok and Other Platforms

Tik tok gives you the option to post your completed TikTok to other platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and more. 

If you look to the bottom of your screen, you will see the different icons representing the platforms to which you can cross-post. 

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We’re almost there!

When you are finished with the video, you can either publish it, or save it as a draft. After your video is published you can still share it. Go to your post and tap the three dots at the bottom right of the screen. Upon tapping, a panel will show up and give you the option to save it to your device or share it to other platforms.

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Pro Tip: This post will have the TikTok logo and your username branded into the video.

Conclusion

TikTok is continuing to gain popularity and isn’t stopping anytime soon. Luckily, you know how to film, edit, and publish your first TikTok video. Remember to experiment with text and effects to take your videos to the next level. Check out how other brands are using TikTok videos to step up their marketing.

If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments below and we’ll be happy to help. In the meantime, check out what else has been On the Radar.

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