TikTok is a strange and wonderful platform. Their algorithm is unmatched and the audience building potential is seemingly unlike any other social media platform. There is also a funny phenomenon where, much like the Harry Potter sorting hat, TikTok has a way of assigning you a niche.
My journey to TikTok baby name influencer
When I started posting on TikTok, I was sharing regular updates regarding my wedding planning. Things like wedding dress shopping, DIY’s, and decor inspiration. One night on a whim I decided to share a video showing the old-fashioned names in one of the vintage yearbooks.
The way TikTok fate would have it, that video ended up going viral. I saw a 5,000 follower increase in just a few days and had requests for more yearbook videos. I was just a couple months away from my wedding and I’d been pondering what my next move would be. So, I decided to take the interest in my vintage yearbooks – specifically the names within them – and run with it.
Here is the video in question. Had I known it would perform the way it had I’d have brushed my hair.
My wedding planning videos performed decently, usually getting at least 1,000 views which I considered a win. My vintage name videos hit a million views by the end of day two.
Growth on TikTok
It’s been almost a year since that decision. I’ve grown my following by nearly 30,000 and have helped hundred of new parents choose their babies names which has been an incredible and humbling experience. I get 4 or 6 emails a week from new parents letting me know that they found their little one’s name in a video of mine. And without fail every email brings tears to my eyes.
While I never consciously sought out to become a “baby name influencer” it’s actually something I’ve been doing in one way or another since childhood. While my peers were playing Webkinz, I preferred to linger on the late Yahoo Answer baby name forums, sharing my 11-year-old opinion on what moniker would be best suited for the next generation. In high school I discovered Name Nerds on Reddit and became a regular contributor there.
Baby names are something I’ve always had strong opinions on. I remember arguing vehemently with my uncle trying to convince him not to name his baby Lily in 2011. I was worried that it was too popular and she’d be one of 4 Lily’s in her class. (He didn’t end up choosing Lily. Instead her name (that’s admittedly perfect for her!) was an even more popular name, go figure.)
So, as admittedly strange this shift in niche has felt, in a weird way, it also felt very right, too.
What’s next for this baby name niche journey
I have been debating showing a bit more of my life on my TikTok. Right now I feel a little bit like a baby-name-machine where nobody actually knows much about me beyond the service that I offer them. But truly, this type of content has brought me so much joy.
What’s next for this journey: I’ve been copying the names in my yearbook collection to a master spreadsheet. This helps make my video creation a bit speedier. I also plan on taking the data from my spreadsheet and turning it into a baby name book. I’ve also been working on the logistics of offering baby name consultations as a service. I’m getting 20+ requests for videos each week, and I love working on them but I don’t have enough hours in a day to fulfill every request. With that said, I’ve run into some frustrated people feeling hurt that I’ve “skipped” their request. I plan on still doing my videos for free when requests catch my eye, but if someone wants a guaranteed consultation they can do that through a paid option.