Since its creation in 2016, TikTok has quickly become one of the most popular social media apps across all age groups. With 1 billion active monthly users, TikTok has blown past other networks like Twitter and Instagram. The demographics of users range across all ages, with users aged 10 to 49 making up more than 89% of the service's user base, making it a powerhouse in internet culture. TikTok has one of the largest age ranges we see in social media, and it’s algorithm makes it easy to reach others through interaction, for example,  liking certain videos, searching certain hashtags, and looking at different accounts. The algorithm studies the types of videos and accounts you seem to enjoy or become interested in, and will seemingly show more and more of similar content on your feed. Restaurants are finding success with customer's viral videos.

Taylor Brandon, the author of the article How TikTok Viral Moments Drive Diners To Bay Area Restaurants talks about their experience with trying out a “TikTok famous” restaurant. Located in Santa Clara, California is the restaurant Din Thai Fung. Din Thai Fung is a Tawainese Chain restaurant known for their soup dumplings, wontons, and cucumber salad. TikTok users filmed and shared their meals at the restaurant under the hashtag #dinthaifung, and it received over 75 million views. As Taylor entered the restaurant, ordered, and waited patiently for an hour to receive their food, the restaurant employees confirmed that the longer wait time and larger crowd was indeed due to TikTok. Food trends are extremely popular on TikTok, and the algorithm they use involves basing user’s feeds off their liked videos. So in turn, if a user likes one video about tasty food being served at a restaurant, more and more of these videos will pop up on their “for you page” otherwise known as a “feed”.  

Abu Salim Middle Eastern Grill in San Francisco, California is another example of TikTok exposing smaller businesses for the better. This restaurant is known for its tasty falafel and shawarma plates, but also their incredibly popular “hummus-spins” on Tik Tok. By treating Tik Tok almost like a virtual menu, Nassaar is able to give his audience a sneak peak of why they should make a stop at his restaurant. The 24 year old co-owner of Abu Salim creates content that promotes the aesthetic quality of his food, furniture and decor. The time and energy it takes to create and post aesthetically pleasing Tik Toks of his food is worth it in the long run, because Nassaar estimates an increase in sales of about 30% every time he posts. Tik Tok continues to help businesses and restaurants showcase their products and cuisine to the world, and at no cost. For individuals who are starting their own small business, Tik Tok is a perfect resource for exposing their products or ideas to the public, and bringing recognition to their hard work!

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