You have no choice.
That’s what Professor G, aka Scott Galloway says on his podcast.
There are two podcasts featuring Galloway One is Pivot, with Kara Swisher, the other is Professor G Pod, which is her solo. You can read about Galloway here: Is Scott Galloway the Howard Stern of the business world?
Scott is absent from the Pivot Podcast this month, so don’t tune in. The magic of Pivot is Scott’s reaction to Kara. Kara alone…she drops names and is so inside that she often loses the plot. But Scott has the ball in hand. He called Elon/Twitter right.
On Galloway’s Professor G podcast, which airs twice a week, just like Pivot, he answers questions. And a recent one was whether Twitter made a mistake shutting down Vine. Galloway thought so, but he waxed rhapsodic about TikTok.
It’s about data points.
Scott said after a brief viewing Netflix only has a few. TikTok has hundreds! Take a look and the algorithm starts adjusting to serve you what you want to see, even if you didn’t know you wanted to see it. Like I keep getting golf shots on Instagram reels, whose algorithm is nowhere near as good as TikTok, and I’ve never liked golf clips, don’t follow any golfers, but I enjoy what’s served!
Now Scott says it takes the average person ten minutes to choose what to watch on Netflix. Which stumped me, since everyone I know seems to be into algorithms or what their friends are. I research for no more than ten minutes, because I don’t want to waste time watching lowbrow, boring, obvious television.
In other words, there is a barrier. What a tax call Scott.
And no one on TikTok. On TikTok you just launch the app and the clips are served. You get no choice!
This is exactly what we need in music. I’ve written about this before, and it got no traction then and it won’t get any traction now. There should be a track a week aired by all streaming platforms Or at least there should only be one on each platform. Track of the week. We all want to check it out. So we could talk about it! After all, everyone will be exposed to it. Do we want every track? Of course not! But we want to check it out. Now many people do not check out anything new music, it is very overwhelming.
Of course Spotify has Discover Weekly, a personalized algorithmic playlist, but I leave that out, too many tuneouts. And the release radar? The problem with algorithms is that they don’t see events. If it’s a reissue, a remix, a remaster, it’s not new! Sure, you want to make me aware, but it disrupts the flow and I don’t listen.
Now you must know that your TikTok thread is personalized for you, and only you!
And that means what you may be into, few others may be into.
Last night I had a comedy wake up call. I was looking for this young, deadpan female comic who was really good. I didn’t follow him, which was a mistake, because I still couldn’t find him again.
And I found some good stuff, and then researched these comics, and some of their YouTube clips only had a few hundred views. One couple had thousands of views. And in terms of career traction, it’s nowhere!
I mean you have to start somewhere. But the road to the top is longer than ever. And at the same time those at the top reach fewer people than ever before. So, if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to quit your day job, and most of these people haven’t!
And they don’t understand the basic rules. Quality counts! Don’t post a TikTok clip with bad audio. Not only does the audience tune out, the algorithm sees that you’re skipping their videos and…they’re out of sight and out of mind! Quality is more important than frequency, remember.
No more barriers to entry!
This is music on steroids!
I mean it’s easy to make a song and post it. You can buy beats, Macs come with GarageBand…whereas all other entertainment on TikTok…requires a lot less history and a lot less talent. Everyone knows how to talk, not everyone knows how to play an instrument, never mind write a song.
And everyone really knows that bad TikToks don’t go anywhere. And TikTok isn’t about impressing your friends, it’s about impressing people in general. Why bother if you’re not actually going to play?
And the level of innovation is mind-blowing. Sure, there are clichéd verticals, sex and beauty, but some people say the worst things. You’ll find more relationship wisdom on TikTok than in many self-help books, and they’re bite-sized!
And sure, the special effects, the gimmicks have an audience, but really it’s about the person/people in the clip. You may be good looking, but do you have charisma? Are you wooden on the screen? Can you connect with people?
TikTok is YouTube on steroids. Because there is no search! Oh, you can search. But really, you just see what the algorithm provides and go to your own personal hejira. There are very few tuneouts, and if you hit one and scroll through it, TIKTOK KNOWS!
TikTok is not forcing you to watch anything. They just want you to watch period. Which means the same people on all other social media platforms, the “winners”, do not own all the airtime They’re competing with nobody to watch, you can never rest on your laurels, and nobody can top it with a single clip, not even their first!
I was shocked at how many there are. I mean I lived through the eighties comedy boom. You’d think all these comedians on TikTok would be crass, total amateurs. But in reality, they are all professionals. And some have hilarious jokes that will make you laugh even if you’re alone. Others will say something that you think is funny, but it doesn’t stick with you.
Now I was looking at mostly female comedians, looking for someone I had seen before. But some benefits were mixed. Such as Jimmy O. Yang, whose name I knew, I’d been exposed to somewhere along the line, but I didn’t really know his material.
This is the bit about fortune cookies that got me looking:
So I watched more Jimmy, he cut a above. And he got traction.
Not so good, from a relative who is funny, Isabelle Hagen:
I could post clip after clip, but I won’t, I’ll just say the more you watch the more you’ll see who’s a pro and who needs closer and better jokes. And then there are those who have made careers as actors, as voiceover artists, whose material isn’t good enough to sustain them as a standup comic.
I don’t even want to listen to new music.
I mean mediocre music is intolerable, whereas mediocre jokes you can tolerate.
So you are now competing with the whole world. Not just alive, but dead. And each person only has a certain amount of attention. And multitasking has been proven to be a scam, that’s not how the brain works, either you’re paying attention or you’re not.
And you thought the road to success was tough before…it’s so steep these days that four wheel drive won’t get you there.
But at least you can publish your work for free and get started.
But when you hear all this nonsense going viral on TikTok…
I’m starting to think it’s pure luck, you can’t really make it happen. The company can push your track, but someone creative has to choose to use it and make a great clip with it. Again, just great work.
So if you are a musician…
Of course, record companies can chase phenoms on TikTok…
But if you play music… suddenly, you’re not just competing against musicians, but seemingly everyone! They are all showcasing their talent online. And most give up. But those who sustain…
It’s not like back in the day, where you could become mediocre in your own market because big talent didn’t come to town. No, now everyone comes to town. At least practically.
The world is rotting as we sit here. Becoming increasingly individualistic. We don’t know where to turn, we don’t know what to make time for, and TikTok makes it easy, it chooses for us!
For non-surfers, non-users, commenting negatively about TikTok without Chinese data collection, I’m talking about misinformation…they don’t understand that TikTok has no mainstream, it’s positively rural. . A million villages and burgs, and there may be no road from one to another.
But we all want to travel.
If you’re not connected to TikTok, you haven’t used it.
You are interested in something. And no matter how obscure it is, someone is talking about it or doing it on TikTok. And all you have to do is surf. You don’t need to search, search, think…just live in the moment and entertainment will come your way.
This is the opposite of network TV.
TikTok is where the algorithm works.
But you can’t beat the game like Google or YouTube. It cannot be wired. You can just dive in and create or watch.
And the more you look, the more frustrated you’ll be if you’re a creator. Competition is fierce, and winning the TikTok game, having a viral clip doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll land a big, rich Hollywood deal.
Something is happening here.
And the more platforms you use, the clearer it becomes.
But don’t think that only a few superstars top the clarity charts… no way!