How to Make a TikTok

Last Updated on Mar. 8, 2024 – by David Morgan
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How to Make a TikTok

Learning how to make a TikTok video can be daunting if you haven’t used the platform before. But part of the app’s popularity stems from the fact that it’s easy enough for anyone to use, so if you’re new to creating videos for TikTok, don’t sweat!

We’ll walk you through the process step-by-step, covering everything from what TikTok is to how to use the interface to view and create TikTok videos. We’ll also walk you through the entire video-making process, including editing and adding the special effects that make the app so much fun.

If you already know your way around the basics, you might be interested in how to make TikTok videos that go above and beyond normal TikTok standards by using third-party video editing software.

This guide will teach you everything you need to know about how to make TikTok videos, whether you’re brand new to content creation or already a little bit experienced.

  1. What is a TikTok?
  2. TikTok Interface
  3. How to Record a TikTok Video
  4. How to Add Effects to a TikTok Video
  5. How to Add Music and Audio Clips to your TikTok Video
  6. How to Add Text to your TikTok Videos
  7. How to Edit Videos Together for TikTok
    1. Combine As You Go
    2. Upload Multiple Clips
    3. How to Edit Multiple Clips Together to Make a TikTok Video with PowerDirector
    4. How To Create Effects for TikTok Videos with PowerDirector
  8. How to Add Captions and Hashtags to your TikTok videos
  9. Create Engaging TikTok Content with PowerDirector

1. What is a TikTok?

TikTok is a social media platform that focuses on sharing short videos. The platform originated in China but is popular the world over, especially among younger audiences.

TikTok videos can be up to one-minute long and can be about anything:

  • Music
  • Dance
  • Comedy
  • Information

The TikTok platform makes it easy for amateurs to create, find, and view interesting content.

TikTok’s algorithms help users discover new videos, and hashtags allow users to search for topics of interest. If you find a video that you love, you can follow the person posting it so you won’t have to worry about missing any new videos they put out.

The platform provides new video creators with all sorts of useful editing tools, from video trimming and voiceover to fun special effects like text overlay and green screen. The editing tools are intuitive and easy to use, even for someone who doesn’t know how to make TikTok video content going in. 

The built-in editor and effects certainly are handy but if you’re looking for a more comprehensive editing experience that gives you far more control and access to many more effects in an even simpler interface, we highly recommend the PowerDirector App.

2. TikTok Interface

TikTok Interface

TikTok’s interface has a contemporary aesthetic that the company designed especially for mobile devices.

The app opens on the home screen, where you will swipe left or right between “following” and “for you.” As you can probably guess, the “following” page will show videos of creators you’re following, while the “for you” page highlights videos that TikTok thinks you might be interested in watching.

You’ll see icons along the right-hand side of the screen that allow you to interact with the videos you’re watching.

  • Profile: The top icon represents the video creator’s profile. Tap it to see more by this user.
  • Like: Tap the heart to “like” a video
  • Comment: Tap to see and leave comments
  • Share: Share the video with others
  • Audio: Save a video’s audio so you can use it in your own videos later

Icons along the bottom of the screen allow you to navigate the app. From left to right:

  • Home takes you to the home screen
  • Discover lets you search for videos using hashtags
  • Add video allows you to create your content
  • Inbox takes you to updates on how others are interacting with your videos
  • Me allows you to view and change your profile information

3. How to Record TikTok Video

Recording a TikTok Video

The first step in learning how to make a TikTok video is recording it. You can record your video directly on the TikTok interface or import video files from your phone. You do both by tapping the “Create Video” button at the bottom center of your screen, which looks like a plus sign.

Tap “Upload” to upload videos from elsewhere. Keep in mind that videos shot vertically in portrait orientation tend to do better on the platform than videos shot in traditional, horizontal landscape mode.

Recording from the TikTok app is easy:

  • Choose the length of the video you want to make
  • Flip between your front and back cameras, depending on which works best for your needs
  • Set your filters (if you’re planning on using any)
  • Set the timer so you can get into place before the video starts recording
  • Press the red “record” button

Now is your time to shine. Take a deep breath, try to relax, and show the world what you can do! Remember to have fun when recording your video—it will show through and create a more engaging video.

4. How to Add Effects to TikTok Video

Adding Effects to a TikTok Video

Knowing how to make a TikTok video doesn’t stop with learning how to record one. You’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the various effects available.

You can choose to use effects during the entire video or set them on a timer so they highlight certain pieces that you want viewers to remember. Just click on the “effects” button to the left of the “record” button, and you’ll see options like:

  • Green screen changes out your background
  • Tear adds tears to your eyes that stream down your face when you blink
  • Disco sets a party vibe with flashing multicolored disco lights
  • Split screen divides the screen in half, with a different video in each
  • Shake effect can emphasize specific points in a video

The effects utilize unlabeled icons, so it can take a while to go through them all and figure out what each one does. But the impact the right effect can have on a video makes it worth the time and effort.

While the backbone of your content should be a well-thought-out video, adding some fun effects can take a TikTok from decent to amazingly fun.

5. How to Add Music and Audio Clips to your TikTok Video

Adding Music to a TikTok Video Recording sound for a TikTok video

Want to know how to make a TikTok even more appealing to your followers? Simple! Just add music that matches whatever mood you’re trying to convey in the video. You can do this in a couple of ways.

First, you can add sound to your video using a third-party video editing app (we like PowerDirector) before uploading it to TikTok. One advantage to PowerDirector is that with a subscription, you’ll have access to a vast music library built right into the app that you can use in your videos, even for commercial purposes. This is the best method to use if you’re interested in uploading original sounds or music not featured in TikTok’s library.

Second, you can add music or audio clips to your TikTok video directly in the app. To do so:

  • Record or upload your video, then tap the “sounds” icon on the bottom of the screen
  • Browse the sound library to find the audio clip you want
  • Add the audio to your video, using the sound wave illustration at the bottom to position the sound clip exactly where you want it

Once you’re satisfied that the audio and video match up the way you’d like, continue as usual.

6. How to Add Text to your TikTok Videos — approximately 170 words 

Adding Text to TikTok Video

This section will show you how to make TikTok videos that stand out with text that pops when and where you want.

Make sure that the font and colors you choose are easy to read against the video’s background, and that they add to, rather than distract from, the video’s purpose.

How to make a TikTok video with text? First, record the video as usual. Then:

  • Tap the “Aa” button, which will bring up the text options
  • Type in your text, customize the font, color, and highlighting, and tap “done”
  • Drag the text to the appropriate place on screen
  • Adjust the timing and duration as needed
  • Preview the video with text and make corrections if necessary
  • Click the check mark in the bottom right corner of the screen to save your text, then continue as usual

Adding text is easy to do, but it takes some practice to get it just right. It’s just one of the many features to master when learning how to make TikTok videos that get a ton of views.

If you’re looking to add more creative text and titles, the PowerDirector App has a one of the most powerful title makers on the market. With the app you can create highly customizable, animated motion graphics for your titles as well as other graphics.

7. How to Edit Videos Together for TikTok

If you want to know how to make a TikTok video from multiple clips, this section is for you. You can find a couple of ways to do this directly in the TikTok app, but if you need to make a ton of edits you might have better luck using a third-party video editing software to combine, edit, and trim the clips before uploading the polished product to TikTok.

i. Combine As You Go

If you haven’t recorded the videos yet and know you’ll want to combine them, the easiest thing to do is to use TikTok’s multiple timer system while recording. This allows you to record a few seconds, pause, then pick up where you left off to record a few more, and repeat until your video is the length you want.

Just look for the red line at the far right side of the soundbar at the bottom of the screen. Slide it to the left and the instructions “grad to set recording limit” will appear. Move the line as much or as little as you want, and you’re good to go.

This method is easy to do but can be cumbersome after a while, especially if you’re looking to create and combine a ton of clips.

Again, the PowerDirector app provides you much more control in your edits. With its easy to use interface, full set of editing tools, easy to stay organized clip bin, a vast collection of effects, and the addition of transitions, you can edit without any limitation right on your phone, ready for TikTok.

ii. Upload Multiple Clips

You know how to make a TikTok video by recording multiple clips as you go, but it’s also helpful to know how to make TikTok videos using clips you’ve already created.

It couldn’t be easier. Simply tap “Upload” in the video creation menu and choose as many clips as you’d like.

TikTok will allow you to trim them as needed to fit within the minute time limit, but it’s important to note that you can only trim from the beginning or end of clips, so if you need to adjust anything mid-clip, you’ll need to do so using a video editing software before uploading to TikTok.

iii. How to Edit Multiple Clips Together to Make a TikTok Video with PowerDirector

Learning how to make TikTok video content that catches viewers’ attention can sometimes mean learning additional apps to achieve the vision you want.

Using PowerDirector’s timeline video editing features to edit multiple clips together gives you more control over the editing process than TikTok does, allowing you to polish clips with precision.

The robust editing software is easy to use, so you can easily teach yourself how to make TikTok videos out of as many clips as you’d like.

  • Drag the clips you want to combine to PowerDirector’s timeline
  • Trim and edit them as needed
  • Select all the clips, right-click, and choose “combine”

When editing clips in PowerDirector, you’ll be able to trim clips down to the last second, making sure the timing is perfect and everything flows together seamlessly. In addition to comprehensive editing tools, you’ll have access to a host of special effects.

iv. How to Create Effects for TikTok Videos with PowerDirector

TikTok’s popularity is growing bigger all the time. That means it’s harder than ever to capture people’s attention, and it can be tough figuring out how to make TikTok videos that stand out. PowerDirector’s innovative special effects and editing tools can set you apart from creators who don’t know how to make a TikTok video outside the TikTok app.

Take a look at just a few of the effects PowerDirector offers:

  • Video stabilizer to fix shaky footage
  • Animated title effects
  • Unique voice-changer for silly videos
  • Hundreds of templates, effects, filters, and audio

8. How to Add Captions and Hashtags to Your TikTok Videos

Add Captions to TikTok Videos

Figuring out how to make TikTok video captions and hashtags is a fairly straightforward process once you get the hang of it.

Just record your video and edit as usual. When you press “next,” you’ll be directed to a screen with the options to add captions and hashtags. Choose text that reflects your video and you as a creator, and you’re good to go.

Think of the caption as a catchy title that will draw users’ attention. Hashtags on TikTok are the same as on other social media platforms: the “#” symbol plus a word or short phrase with no spaces that’s intended to help users sort through posts by subject.

Captions and hashtags are a big part of how people will find your videos on TikTok, so make sure you know how to make TikTok video captions that capture people’s attention and hashtags that will attract the people most likely to be interested in what you have to share.

9. Create Engaging TikTok Content with PowerDirector

Learning how to make a TikTok video takes a little time and patience, but it’s not hard to do. If you’re a creative person who wants to share your talent with the world, TikTok can be a valuable tool for doing that.

The platform itself is easy to use, allowing you to record, edit, and post videos with as many or as few effects as you want. The effects it offers are fun and trendy, making it exciting to start making videos right away.

But there comes a time for many TikTok users when the app’s tools aren’t enough for what they’re trying to do, which is where third-party editing apps come in. PowerDirector is one of the most all-encompassing video editing tools around and is intuitive enough for anyone to learn and implement in their TikTok creation.

Download PowerDirector for Android, Windows, or iOS today and see how to make a TikTok video that impresses your audience.

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