Tiktok, a short-video creating and sharing app, is worldwide known for its Gen-Z (as the present generation likes to be called) user base. But, you will be surprised to hear meme-ing moms are largely being counted under some of the most popular content creators on the platform lately. You heard that right! I am talking about the meme-ing ‘MOMS’ posting actively on the platform.
If you ask anybody in the public who they picture when asked to think of a social media sensation and influencer. Most of them will probably picture young creative teens and adults in their twenties. Making fun content for their audiences in the same demographic area. Anyone among us would expect these influencers to have perfectly styled and snapped pictures. Along with high-quality videos, trending hashtags and thousands of followers. Who eagerly wait for new content to be posted. And we all think this obviously because, in general, that’s what influencers look like and do.
However, things are changing on Tiktok. Although Tiktok’s audiences still comprise digitally well-nourished teens to a larger extent. Which is common in most of the social media platforms. The creators, on the other hand, are no more just teens and Gen-Zers(Generation Z). A new type of influencer is emerging on the platform: the Tiktok mom.
Tiktok, for the unenlightened and beginners, is the most recent mainstream social media platform. It has been popularly known for its large number of Gen-Z audiences (you can get a brief description of it here). It is quite similar to the app that is popular among thousands of users Vine. Here users can create and share 15-60 seconds long videos on Tiktok. The app is mostly used to post content such as pranks, short Vine-style comedy sequences, and the platform’s most unique feature: lip-syncing videos.
‘Mom bloggers’ who post about being a parent is usual on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and other blogging platforms. But the Tiktok mom is something quite different in comparison to those. Platforms like Tiktok is dominantly used for, and even designed for, memes. So, Tiktok moms are following the trend on the platform. They’re creating identical meme videos posted by the Gen-Z rather than discussing parenting.
One of such biggest mom stars who bagged huge popularity on Tiktok is Varli Singh, known among her followers as ‘Varli’. She is a mother of two currently residing in New York after spending many years in Texas. If we evaluate Varli based on her appearance, she is a normally dressed, mid-40’s mom. But if we take a look at her Tiktok account, she has a magnificent nearly half a million followers (441K) on her account @Varlicious. She posts daily videos that regularly get more than 10 thousands of likes.
She started off by sharing a series of prank clips and music videos. Her videos usually feature her kids and some of the time other children. She has now found an increasing number of hungry audiences attracted to her video meme. The series is titled “Why fear, Varli is here.” These videos are apparently what escalated her. From an average influencer to one of the app’s most popular accounts. In the video, she enacts herself as a savior intruding at the last minute to save children from intimidating and harassing situations. Most of her videos have got over 56K likes with some videos getting over 100K likes.
Before her meme-filled presence, Varli was a food writer until last year. She has her personal website in which she hasn’t once mentioned her Tiktok stardom. Instead, she solely talks about the Indian food scene in the United States. And how her Asia and the Middle East upbringing has enhanced her understanding of diverse cuisine. She even has her own YouTube channel, which she started nearly a decade ago. Her channel is entirely dedicated to food interviews. However, from the last few months, videos show ‘behind the scenes’ recording of how some of her videos were made. There’s also a call-out post in which she calls YouTuber Danny Gonzalez a ‘hater’ for mocking her Tiktok content.
If you feel Varli’s videos are highly faked and badly acted, it’s because they are. Surprisingly, even though she has quite a lot of mockable content, she has an ocean of hungry audiences waiting for her next post. The recent meme video she posted has inspired many to create posts and content similar to them. The hashtag she used for her video #dontfearvarlishere has around 11 million views. And it’s misspelling #dontfearvarliishere has around 40K views.
Although Varli is possibly the biggest Tiktok mom influencer, she is not the only one. Another mother by the name ‘Just Joyce’ (@author_lady_j) has earned over 20K followers with content fewer than 250 videos. Even though it’s not possible to see how many times a video has been viewed on Tiktok since it only shows the number of hearts (i.e. likes) one has in his/her posts. Joyce has successfully managed to bag 40K hearts off her limited content. That’s huge for someone who has less shared content. Another account appropriately named Mommy (@mommy1961) also has amazing 112K followers. Though most of her videos show her cooking and smiling at the camera. Along with some standard lip-syncing videos.
Just like Varli, these popular Tiktok moms have had day jobs until joining Tiktok last year. But, along with their day jobs, these moms are accumulating more followers than a normal average full-time influencer would do. This is a real mom charm.
Family videos are famous on other social media channels. And now it is an emerging and popular genre on Tiktok as well. One of such is the Gott family which has 306K followers under the dad’s account named @CarlGott. In most of their videos, both the mother and the father share videos of them pulling pranks on their children. Unlike the light-heartedness of most prank content ( like those of the moms mentioned before), the pranks this family pull tends to have a darker theme.
Most Gott videos show the scene of their children disrespecting them. Which ultimately leads to something bad happening to the father or the mother. For example, some of the Gott videos include the kids jumping out from behind the door to scare their father. It leads to the implied death of the father. Or how the kids ignoring one of the Gott parents leads that parent into a car crash.
In general, videos as such attempt to show a ‘morality to the story’ as a lesson to teach its audience about respect and family. Despite these videos having a lot of cringe factor, the Gott family’s account has several highly liked videos across the platform. Their videos let the audience have a taste of something quite different from the lip-syncing videos.
You might be surprised to hear that it’s not just middle-aged moms and families sweeping views on Tiktok. Grandmas too are gaining audiences in numbers larger than tens and thousands. Carey Jolly (@c_ima_jolly) is one of such grandmas. She has bagged 50K follower audience through her lip-syncing and duet videos. A Tiktok account by the name Grandma YoYo (@ocdocdonecutediva) is another Grandma. She is quite famous on Tiktok with over 90K followers. She went viral on Twitter and Tiktok earlier this month for post uploading a lovely video describing her planned day out for Mother’s Day.
https://www.tiktok.com/share/video/6690188892680752390?refer=embed This is the link to Grandma YoYo talking about her Mother’s day plan.
These grandmas haven’t yet reached that level of stardom like Varli and the Gott family. But both Carey Jolly and Grandma have hearts total of over a million. And both of their videos successfully get 10K hearts on a regular basis.
CONCLUSION: It is true that Tiktok is still taken over by Gen-Zers and young teenagers. Both in content creation and content consumption. When asked about the biggest stars on the platforms-those who have successfully crossed the one million barriers. The number of Tiktok moms can still be counted by hand. Nonetheless, the trend of having only Gen-Zers as the social media influencers are changing, at least for Tiktok, it is. Tiktok moms and families are on the rise and I don’t see a reason why they can’t.