Time To Embrace TikTok

How Live Events Can Win in the Digital Age

In all consumer-facing industries, keeping up with the latest marketing trends is essential for success. Our recent survey of industry marketing professionals has revealed a resounding consensus: short video content is the undeniable trend, but for many TikTok remains an intimidating frontier. Fear not, though, because we’ve sought advice from Tanyel Gumushan, the Social Media Manager behind the success of WhatsOnStage and TheaterMania, who has amassed over 45 thousand followers in just over a year. Here are her invaluable insights into how live event venues can harness the power of TikTok. 

Be Human

If you’re speaking directly to the camera, do so while engaging in everyday activities like preparing lunch, working, or commuting. This approach makes you appear more natural and relatable compared to scripted presentations. If you’re using a voiceover, speak as if you’re talking to a friend, focusing less on perfect sentences and more on genuine communication.

Embrace Imperfection

The beauty of TikTok lies in its spontaneity. You don’t need a professional setup to create engaging content. In fact, the best TikToks are often made on a mobile device, on a whim. TikTok’s visual hierarchy places usernames and profile pictures low, so there’s no need for lengthy introductions—get right into the content and let viewers discover.


Despite the gardens undergoing work to be transformed into a diverse green space, the urban foxes are still exploring and playing 😊🦊 #Fox #UrbanWildlife #NaturalHistoryMuseum

♬ sail away (instrumental) – lovelytheband

TikTok is a platform driven by trends. While you don’t have to participate in each one, try to engage with relevant ones. You can comment on trends or use them as inspiration to create your own content. For instance, you can “duet” with a video that warrants reaction.


This or That Challenge with @Ollie Robinson! Do you agree withe all of his choices #fyp #foryoupage #ashes #cricket

♬ Canyons – Official Sound Studio

#duet with @Museum of Science this is why we have quizlet 😮‍💨💨 #physicstok #fyp #bernoullisprinciple #sciencetok

♬ original sound – Museum of Science

Utilize Keywords

TikTok operates as a search engine, and using keywords strategically helps categorize your videos for better search results. In fact, over half of Gen Z users prefer TikTok to Google when they have a question to be answered. Include relevant, searchable words in your captions and within the video content itself, such as in your response to comments. 


Performing at the Apollo Theater was mind blowing! Deaf Artist, Deaf Event, and all Bipoc ! 🥹 Just amazing! Thank you Apollo for extending this history making experience 🫶🏾 . . FYP TheApollo ApolloTheater Harlem Deaf DeafEvent ASL AnericanSignLanguage Film Dance DJ SignLanguage NYC NewYorkCity DeafTikTok Interpreter BlackDeaf DeafCommunity Champ Champion Vlog Captions

♬ Calm background music with acoustic guitar and saxophone(1288148) – ame

Interact With Your Audience

Engagement is key on TikTok. Respond to comments with additional videos, providing more context or answering questions. Sharing the making-of process can be both intriguing and educational for your audience.


Replying to @Baked & Bougie IT’S MARIAH SEASON

♬ original sound – Deanna Giulietti

Treat yo self to a PMP subscription! Subscriptions AND single tickets are ON SALE NOW! See our website for full details and info. #treatyourself #treatyoself #parksandrec #theatertok

♬ original sound – Prime Video Canada 🇨🇦


Don’t be afraid to try anything. TikTok rewards creativity and originality. If a video doesn’t perform as expected, consider slightly re-editing it, changing the sound, or repurposing it for another time. Remember that timing plays a significant role in TikTok’s success. 

Bottom line: If it sucks, no one will see it – so no pressure!

Prioritize Visuals

In an endless scroll, captivating visuals are king. Tanyel suggests treating TikTok similarly to Instagram, emphasizing eye-catching images and captivating text overlays. This approach allows you to convey news and information quickly. One effective tactic is to create “spend a day with me” diary-style entries, offering a behind-the-scenes look at your venue and team.

TikTok offers a dynamic platform to connect with audiences in a new way. So, start creating, experimenting, and sharing your story on TikTok today!