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TikTok Pisses off Creators with New Payment Program

TikTok Pisses off Creators with New Payment Program

TikTok, you’ve done it again.

We all know how successful this binge-worthy app is. According to Backlinko, it’s the most engaging platform in the world with an average session of 10.85 minutes, which is double the time spent on #2 Pinterest. Wowza.

One of the reasons for TikTok’s rise has been its $1 Billion Creator Fund that rewards their best creators. This has driven tons of great content, much of which we spend hours scrolling through looking for the next big hit. It’s been an amazing rise and a tremendous success.

But uneasy wears the crown. Starting on December 16, content creators living in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany will undergo a transition from TikTok’s Creator Fund to the newly introduced Creativity Program. The difference?

TikTok Gets Controversial, Threatens Creator Divide with New Payment Program

The TikTok Creativity Program, Finally Explained

Here’s the lowdown: The Creativity Program will only reward creators who make content longer than a minute. And while this development is welcome news for content creators who like making more extended, dialogue-driven content, all those people creating super-short form are now going to be left empty handed. Even before this, the fund had been a broken model, often paying creators with millions of views barely enough to buy their next coffee.

By way of comparison, YouTube has an advertising revenue-sharing model that disburses an impressive $10 billion a year to its creators.

Quite the gap, indeed. But the bigger challenge?

Not all creators will successfully transition to this new extended TikTok format. It may sound simple to make everything just a little bit longer, but this definitely presents a challenge to creators used to the shorter format. Even the most successful might struggle with this and lose their viewer engagement.

On top of that, the Creativity Program also doesn’t pay out on videos featuring copyrighted music. This is a bit of a gut punch for creators, given TikTok’s heavy lean into trends reliant on popular songs. But it also makes sense from a business perspective, because TikTok itself makes more profit from videos with royalty-free music.

In a nutshell, creators are expected to:

  1. Make content longer than a minute, even if this isn’t their jam. And –
  2. Stop using copyrighted music, the bread and butter of trends on the platform.

Indeed, there are lots of things to ponder in the realm.

Want more TikTok best practices? Click here. 

TikTok Gets Controversial, Threatens Creator Divide with New Payment Program

The Creator TikTok Action Plan

But all is not lost. Here are some things every creator can do to stay true to themselves and still partake in this new Creativity Program opportunity.

  1. Keep it Real: First and foremost, don’t go chasing the 1 minute length mark – at least at the outset. If you’re used to making pithy short vids, keep it up. But slowly, over time, experiment with the longer form, making sure to maintain your voice and the magic that your audience loves in the first place.
  2. Make Sure it Doesn’t Suck: This is the hard part of course. But if you’ve been successful in the past with the shorter form format, you know what works and what doesn’t. So experiment, try new stuff out, be bold.
  3. Adapt: Sadly, platforms change all the time. In the 1920’s, many major film stars lost their jobs because they couldn’t adapt to the introduction of sound and ‘talking pictures’. True story. Don’t be left behind. Especially when there’s still a ton of great possibility on the platform.

TikTok makes the claim that some people will be able to 20x their earnings under the new program. Though this hasn’t been proven yet, there’s still time to adapt and take advantage of this shift. The old model was broken and needed to be fixed, and this just may be the answer. Don’t look back six months from now and wish you’d made the leap to longer form content.

Because it’s happening right now. Go forth and make the good stuff.

Here’s a vid that just may help which lays out the 411 on how Canva (another great tool out there) can help you create beautiful TikTok content:

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