Your Comprehensive TikTok Guide

Your Comprehensive Guide to TikTok 


TikTok is a social media sensation that has long been considered the stomping ground for Gen Z. However, the platform has evolved into a hub of content that resonates with people of all ages. So, here’s your comprehensive guide to TikTok, a cultural phenomenon. Whether you’re looking to understand global trends, reconnect with your creative side, learn more, or simply enjoy a burst of entertainment, TikTok offers an expansive universe for everyone. 

What is TikTok

TikTok is a dynamic social media platform that allows users to create and share videos ranging from 15 seconds to 10 minutes in length. Launched in September 2016, its reach skyrocketed after acquiring in 2017, adding over 200 million accounts. However, as of September 2023, TikTok has over 1 billion monthly active users. The platform boasts a rich tapestry of content — from side-splitting humor to insightful tutorials — reflecting the diverse interests of its users. Recognized for its compelling allure, TikTok captivates audiences with personalized feeds filled with viral trends and content. Users can easily engage by liking, commenting on, or sharing their favorite clips. 

Who is TikTok for? 

At first glance, TikTok may appear to cater predominantly to the younger crowd, but a closer look reveals a diverse user base: 

  • 10-19 years: 25% 
  • 20-29 years: 22.4% 
  • 30-39 years: 16.4% 
  • 40-49 years: 13.9% 
  • 50+ years: 7.1% 

Although the platform resonates strongly with the youth, an increasing number of mature users are flocking to TikTok, shattering age-related misconceptions. TikTok serves as a platform for them to not only exhibit their zest and zeal but also to share a lifetime’s worth of wisdom and insights. It’s also a bridge, connecting them with younger family members, such as grandchildren, fostering mutual understanding and shared moments. 

How Does TikTok Learn What I Like? 

TikTok’s ability to serve content that aligns with user preferences is often regarded as its magic. The core of this lies in its sophisticated algorithm that finds and shows you specific videos you might enjoy on your “For You Page (FYP). Here’s how it determines what shows up on your “For You Page” (FYP): 

  • User Interactions: Noting which kinds of videos you have liked, shared, or commented on in the past 
  • Video Information: Elements such as captions, music tracks, and hashtags of the videos you have engaged with in the past 
  • Device and Account Settings: Preferences like your chosen language and your location. 

As you immerse yourself more in TikTok, it fine-tunes its recommendations to better match your interests. But remember, you’re not just a passive consumer — you have the power to shape your TikTok experience. Here’s how: 

  • Activate Restricted Mode: A feature designed to screen out content that might not be suitable for all audiences. Navigate to: Profile > Menu > Settings and Privacy > Content Preferences > Enable Restricted Mode. 
  • Filter Content with Keywords: If certain keywords or hashtags don’t resonate with you, easily filter them out. Navigate to: Profile > Menu > Settings and Privacy > Content Preferences, then input the keywords or tags you wish to avoid. 
  • Express Disinterest: Encounter a video that doesn’t catch your fancy? Long press on it or tap the Share button and select ‘Not Interested’. This feedback refines the algorithm’s understanding of your likes and dislikes. 
  • Control Notifications: To minimize disturbances, consider muting TikTok’s push notifications. This way, you decide when to dive into the TikTok universe. 
  • Flag Inappropriate Content: Help the community by reporting content that breaches TikTok’s guidelines, ensuring a positive and respectful space for all. 

By understanding and leveraging these tools, you can cultivate a TikTok experience that’s uniquely tailored to your preferences. 

Seniors on TikTok 

As we mentioned in our last blog post, seniors have been taking TikTok by storm. Here are some examples of content seniors are sharing on the app every day: 

  1. Cooking videos: Sharing their cooking skills and recipes on TikTok, showcasing their culinary talents, and sharing their knowledge with the community 
  1. Dance challenges: Participating in dance challenges and showcasing their moves 
  1. Educational videos: Sharing their knowledge and experience on TikTok, creating educational videos on topics such as history, science, and technology 
  1. Day in the life videos: Sharing their daily routines and activities on TikTok, giving viewers a glimpse into lives and routines wildly different from theirs 
  1. Humorous videos: Sharing their sense of humor and make people laugh, creating funny and relatable content that resonates with viewers 
  1. Collaborations with younger generations: Collaborating with younger generations on TikTok, participating in dance challenges and other trends with their children and grandchildren

Here are some ways you can find and connect with other seniors on TikTok: 

  • Hashtags: Harness the power of hashtags to find content by seniors that aligns with your interests. If you’re into culinary arts, hashtags like #SeniorCooks or #SeniorChef might be your starting point. 
  • Community Engagement: Dive deeper by commenting on videos, sharing your creations, and hopping onto trending challenges. It’s a doorway to bond with like-minded seniors. 
  • Groups to Consider: TikTok is teeming with groups that cater to niche interests. Garden enthusiasts, for instance, might resonate with groups or hashtags centered around #SeniorGardening 
  • Team Up with Other Users: Engage in joint ventures, participate in challenges or co-create content. It amplifies reach and fosters community ties. 

TikTok isn’t just a young person’s realm. As seniors carve their niche, they’re showcasing the beauty of intergenerational interactions and the diverse content palette they bring to the table. 

FAQ and Misconceptions 

Got more questions? You’re not alone! Dive into our FAQ section below to find answers to commonly asked questions about TikTok. 

Isn’t TikTok just for teenagers and young adults? 

While a significant portion of TikTok users are younger individuals, the platform is home to users of all ages, including seniors, and has content spanning numerous genres. 

Is it safe to use TikTok? 

Like all social media platforms, there are potential risks (e.g., data privacy, cyberbullying). However, by using privacy settings and being cautious about sharing personal information, users can have a safer experience. 

Is it hard to navigate? 

TikTok’s design is relatively intuitive. With a bit of exploration, most users can figure out how to watch, create, and share videos. 

Is TikTok only for dancing and lip-syncing? 

While dancing and lip-syncing videos are popular, TikTok has a diverse range of content, from cooking to education to DIY crafts. 

How do people make money on TikTok? 

Some users monetize through brand partnerships, sponsorships, or by promoting products. Others use TikTok as a platform to guide their followers to other monetized channels or platforms. 

Is all the content on TikTok frivolous or silly? 

Not at all. While there’s plenty of light-hearted content, there are also educational channels, DIY tips, news outlets, and more. 

Do I have to show my face or personal life if I make a video? 

No, users can create content in any manner they choose, including animations, voice-overs, or using just their hands. 

Does it cost money? 

The app is free to download and use. There are in-app purchases available, but they are not required to enjoy the platform. 

Are there concerns about TikTok’s data privacy? 

There have been discussions about the app’s data collection practices, and some have raised concerns about its ties to China. It’s essential to be informed and decide what you’re comfortable with. TikTok CEO Shou Chew has previously told US lawmakers that the company has never been asked by the Chinese government for data on its US users and would never comply. 

Can I control who sees my videos? 

Yes, TikTok allows users to set their accounts to private, which means only approved followers can see their content. 

Will the app take up a lot of space on my phone? 

The app itself doesn’t take up an excessive amount of space, but downloading and saving numerous videos can use up storage over time. 

Do I need to be tech-savvy to use TikTok? 

Not necessarily. While having some familiarity with smartphones can help, many users find the platform user-friendly and intuitive with a bit of practice. 

Is the content on TikTok vetted or curated? 

TikTok uses algorithms to suggest content, but it doesn’t manually curate all videos. This means that there’s a wide variety of content, and users might occasionally come across inappropriate or misleading videos. 

Do I have to post videos if I join TikTok?

No, many people use TikTok solely for viewing and not for posting. You can enjoy content without ever creating your own. 

Is there a lot of false information or “fake news” on TikTok? 

Like any platform, there’s potential for misinformation. It’s always essential to verify any claims or advice found on social media platforms. 

How does TikTok’s algorithm work? 

TikTok’s algorithm is designed to show users content they might like based on their interactions (e.g., likes, shares, follows). However, the exact workings of the algorithm are proprietary. 

Can I interact with videos, like on other platforms? 

Yes, users can “like,” comment, share, and follow other users, much like other social platforms. 

I’ve heard about “TikTok challenges.” What are they? 

Challenges on TikTok are trends where users create content based on a specific theme or set of actions. Some are fun and harmless, while others can be risky. It’s important to exercise judgment before participating. 

Does TikTok have ads? 

Yes, like many free platforms, TikTok monetizes through advertisements. Users will occasionally see sponsored videos or posts. 

Is TikTok just a trend or fad that will go away soon? 

While it’s hard to predict the longevity of any social platform, TikTok has shown significant growth and staying power since its global launch. 

I’m not into pop culture. Is there anything on TikTok for me? 

Absolutely! While there’s a lot of pop culture on TikTok, there’s also content about gardening, history, science, cooking, and virtually any other interest one might have. 


TikTok is a melting pot of creativity, education, and entertainment. It’s not just a youth-centric platform but a community where seniors can celebrate their life experiences, connect with diverse age groups, and stay updated with the world. Embrace the digital wave and see what TikTok has in store for you!

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