MBW has an interview with Timothy Armoo, founder and CEO of Fanbytes, where he talks about the TikTok campaign for Decca-signed act Aurora based around her track ‘The River’ which was about sending out “a positive message promoting mental health awareness”.

For the #youcancrychallenge, they focused on 13 well-known TikTok users to get things rolling by asking followers to record a duet with them and create what they called a “solidarity chain” of clips. Over 3,000 fans uploaded videos and collectively they have been viewed over 5m times. Armoo makes an interesting point here about measuring success on a platform like TikTok – where it is about the scale of participation rather than just views or likes. “Increasingly, we’re seeing that the metric for success is UGC and videos actually uploaded around the song,” he says. “This is significantly more impactful than just a like or even just a comment because it requires a greater time investment.” It is the effort required to create and upload a video that needs to be factored in here when scooping up all the different metrics around a campaign.

Every platform seems to regularly  recalibrate what it considers to be a success – shifting from number of watches/reads to dwell time and from number of plays to number of followers/subscribers. The new benchmarks can and will impact on recommendation algorithms and while none of this is calling for open season to try and game those algorithms, it is important to be aware where – for now, at least – platforms are focusing things and how the architecture of marketing campaigns can be shifted to be more in line with them.

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