Live on TikTok has the same benefits as live on any social media channel: it’s your chance to connect with your audience in real time.
While living on TikTok, viewers can ask questions and engage with you immediately. Spontaneous live broadcasting comes with spontaneity and authenticity – after all, you are uncircumcised, unedited and uncensored! Anything could happen, and the chaos is exciting (not to mention, live streaming is also a great way to boost social commerce).
Whether you’re running a series, talking, sharing a guide, or organizing a performance, live broadcasts create opportunities to hone your skills and build your brand.
One unique advantage of publishing on TikTok: if you are over 18, viewers can send you virtual gifts, which you can then exchange for cash. You can also use this feature to raise money for charity – although the “course” isn’t great, tbh.
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How many followers do you need to broadcast live on TikTok?
TikTok’s live streaming feature is not automatically available to all accounts. TikTok users must be at least 16 years old to have this feature enabled.
TikTok also limited the Live feature to accounts with 1,000 followers. But given that … we’ve heard rumors of a workaround for accounts with fewer followers. We tried on our own and failed, but maybe you’ll have more luck? More on that below!
How to broadcast live on TikTok
Here’s how to stream live to TikTok if you have access to live streaming platforms.
- Touch Create icon on the home screen (this is a plus sign at the bottom of the screen).
- Drag to Live.
- Select an image and write a title for your stream.
- Ready to get started? Touch GO LIVE button and your broadcast will begin. Followers will receive a notification that you are transmitting.
- While streaming, you can tap three dots to rotate the camera, add effects, add moderators, or filter comments. You can also add a co-host to share a live stream on a shared screen with a friend, guest, or co-worker.
- When you are ready to finish, tap X in the upper left corner to interrupt your TikTok live broadcast.
How to schedule a TikTok live event
Notify your followers that you have an upcoming live broadcast with the TikTok events feature.
- Tap the calendar icon in the upper right corner of your TickTok profile.
- Create an event with a name, start time, and date, description, and duration.
- When your event is ready, you can share the link via in-app messages or link it in a video.
- You can record a promotional video by tapping + floor Related videos on your events page. Record your video, add a link to the event, press Done, and then Mail.
Another way to create buzz is by using the Live Countdown sticker. Record TikTok, drag the label panel up, and adjust the Countdown label to the date and time of your event. Viewers can join the reminder when you go live.
How to live with a co-host or guest
When recording live, select at the bottom of the screen Add a co-host or Add guests.
How to broadcast live on TikTok on a tablet
To stream live on TikTok on a tablet, follow the same procedures as for the TikTok mobile app above.
Quick experiment: Can you go live on TikTok without 1,000 fans?
We’ve heard some rumors that there’s a workaround for going out live, even without 1,000 fans. While we wouldn’t want to support hacks that weren’t approved by TikTok, we thought it was worth testing.
Basically, the alleged workaround included submitting a support card (a so-called lie) claiming that you previously had live access, and asking a customer service representative to “return” this privilege.
But the bad news: In short, when we tried this hack, it failed.
Given that, maybe if you have a more active presence in TikTok, you will be more lucky? Here is the proposed protocol:
- To submit this report, go to Yes and select a three-point menu.
- Touch Report a problem.
- Touch I can’t start live.
- You will be asked, “Has your problem been resolved?” Select No. and then I need extra help.
- On the feedback form screen, type “I could have started the live broadcast before, but I can’t now.”
- Touch Report.
- Theoretically, a customer service representative will be in touch and enable live streaming …
… or maybe not, as was the case when we tried this trick.
If that doesn’t work for you either, you’d better dedicate yourself to building an engagement to organically increase the number of fans.
11 beginner mistakes to avoid when going live on TikTok
Live videos can be uncut and unedited, but it still takes time, thought, and planning to create a memorable broadcast. Avoid these common beginner mistakes:
Mistake # 1: Live whenever you feel like it
Sure, spontaneous live streaming can be a fun surprise for followers, but to really increase the number of people adapting, try to broadcast live when your audience is usually online, scrolling and active. This is your best chance to land on their For You page.
Error 2: Broadcast for too long
While live sessions can last up to 60 minutes, TikTok suggests targeting a maximum of 30 minutes. That’s right: as far as live streaming on TikTok is concerned, less is more.
Error # 3: Live without warning
Placing a plain TikTok video in front of your live stream is a smart way to promote your broadcast, as each user who sees your video will also see a special icon letting them know you are streaming. This icon will allow them to enter your stream directly from your feed for you to expand the action.
Mistake # 4: Poor lighting
Poor lighting makes it difficult for viewers to see what is happening – a small problem for the visual medium.
Take some time and make sure your lighting is decent before you go live. Look for a well-lit area with plenty of natural light or even grab a ring.
Mistake # 5: Broadcasting from noisy environments
Background noise can interfere with your broadcast, so find a quiet place for your transmission.
Error # 6: Stopping faulty wifi
It is quite difficult to start a successful transmission with an insecure internet connection. If you go in and out, it’s hard for the audience to really get engaged.
Test your connectivity before you go live, and if your WiFi is constantly faulty, it might be worth investing in a higher speed or stronger signal.
Mistake # 7: Shaky camera corners
A little action or movement can certainly trigger a live broadcast, but too much movement or shaking can create a dizzying experience. Instead, aim for a stable position, supporting the phone, or using a tripod for the best angle.
Mistake # 8: We wing
Part of the joy of live streaming is certainly the spontaneous energy that can happen. But if things are too crooked or unfocused, your audience may wonder what they’re actually doing here.
A general plan of attack (recorded speech points or a rough outline) can help you stay up to date and on the message so that your viewers make the most of the time spent with you.
Mistake # 9: Forgetting viewer interaction
The beauty of TikTok Live is that it is interactive: you can engage with your audience instantly, answer requests or answer questions in real time.
Remember to watch the conversation as it happens so you don’t miss the opportunity to build your relationship with your fans.
Mistake # 10: Harassment
I’m not trying to blame the victim! I’m just saying it’s a mistake not to take advantage of the moderation tools TikTok has for live broadcasts.
Creators can filter comments and mute or block viewers as needed. You can also assign moderators to deal with all the annoying trolls, so you can just focus on creating great content.
Mistake # 11: Not capturing numbers
You know we’re obsessed with metrics here at Hootsuite headquarters – so we’re thrilled to see that TikTok now has live analytics in addition to other analytics. Review your data to see quantitatively how your broadcast went, so you can adjust, repeat, and improve next time.
Now that you know what no what you need to do, explore the plethora of tips for creating great live content in our top-notch social media streaming guide here.
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