Tips for Going Live on TikTok for the First Time

I’ve just hit my first 1K too and have gone live twice so far. One important thing to know up front is that going live here is not exactly like going live on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Your live broadcast is not saved anywhere – it’s like a phone call: if you’re there, great. If not, you missed it! So, you don’t have to be concerned about the replay views and talking right away. In this case, you can actually save your chops and WAIT for people to come in (which is what people used to think you should do on other lives, but that’s clearly not the case!). However, super content creator @TheToiley just gave us some Bonus Pro Tips which we’ve included here about how you can record your lives if you’d like to repurpose them elsewhere, so be sure to catch their tips!

Here are some things to think about before you go live on TikTok for the first time:


I like the idea of having a set time you go live. I’ve even seem some TikTokers put their live time in their bio! (I haven’t done that to mine yet but I have it on the backburner just in case). So far, I’ve been shooting for Thursdays at 9 or 10pm EST, but I’ve also seen some go live in the middle of the day – perhaps around lunchtime, etc. Be mindful that if you have (or want to have) overseas followers, pick a time that’s UK-friendly or Australasia friendly, etc. (depending on where you want to target).


I agree with the idea of having a topic ready (remember, that area where you can input a topic is very small, so keep it super succinct). If you’re teaching about something, it’s good to have your pointers prepared ahead of time and be prepared to recap them over and over for people who keep coming in.


Ask people to tell you where they’re chiming in from and other questions you can think of to get them commenting and hanging around. Say hello to everyone who enters (you’re not going to get a ton of people joining when your numbers are just 1K, so super VALUE everyone who comes in the door).


Also, be prepared to have a square photo to include with your live – that’s helpful as well.


So far, I’ve been giving myself a time limit of not wanting to be on more than 30 minutes. Truth be told, I haven’t stuck to that yet, I usually end up going 45 to an hour. The longer you stay on, the more people keep coming in and you end up having to retell your points / story over and over. I can only do that for so long! Ha!! I’ve seen some TikTokers STAY live for HOURS on end, like their entire night. That probably has its pros and cons like everything. I would never do that because (A) I want people to realize my time is far more valuable than that and (B) it’s true, I got other ish to do!! lol. But I think 30 min to an hour is a good length of time for me so far.


I like the TikTokers who are doing something – like baking or making dinner. It gives a visual interest while people are talking to you and more things for them to ask questions about (i.e. more ways to keep them engaged).


Bonus Pro Tips

Special bonus tips from @TheToiley who has over 1.4M followers (as of 3 May 2020):

  • “Take calls’” via Discord on another device during my show. So viewers can call in. I much prefer this over reading the chat.
  • Screen record your live streams so you can repurpose the content elsewhere.

Hope that helps! What live tips do you have?


Andrea D. Smith, Owner @theADSagency
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