TikTok Is 'Exploring' First Program Sharing Ad Money With Some Creators

TikTok is also going to let advertisers pay to place their ads next to the most popular TikTok posts each day.

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Joan E. Solsman was CNET's senior media reporter, covering the intersection of entertainment and technology. She's reported from locations spanning from Disneyland to Serbian refugee camps, and she previously wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. She bikes to get almost everywhere and has been doored only once.
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Queenie Wong was a senior writer for CNET News, focusing on social media companies including Facebook's parent company Meta, Twitter and TikTok. Before joining CNET, she worked for The Mercury News in San Jose and the Statesman Journal in Salem, Oregon. A native of Southern California, she took her first journalism class in middle school.
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2 min read
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James Martin/CNET

TikTok said Wednesday it's "exploring" its first ad-revenue sharing program, which would give pay 50% of the money generated from some advertising to top creators, public figures and other publishers whose posts run next to those ads. To qualify for the program, a TikTok account would need a minimum of 100,000 followers initially. 

The revenue sharing is linked to a new kind of advertising on called TikTok Pulse, which would start letting advertisers pay to place their branded posts next to the top 4% of TikToks each day. The program gives marketers the option to give their ads to get prime placement next to the most viral or attention-grabbing stuff. But it would also initiate a 50/50 split for creators and TikTok to share the revenue generated from Pulse advertising running against those top posts. 

The announcements were part of the NewFronts, a weeklong parade of pitches by online media companies to drum up advertiser interest.

TikTok, a social app for sharing bite-size quirky videos owned by Chinese company ByteDance, has exploded in popularity in recent years, but the service has also bumped up against questions in the US and elsewhere about privacy, child safety, user data and content moderation.

The news about revenue sharing opens the door to giving TikTok creators more ways of making money off their popularity, which has been a standard practice at competitor YouTube for years. (YouTube's standard revenue share is roughly 55/45, with creators keeping the larger share, though it varies.)

With TikTok Pulse, brands would be able to buy ad placement next to the "top 4% of the most culturally relevant content on TikTok" in a dozen subject categories, like fashion, music, autos, beauty, sports and TV and movies. It said the posts that fall into that top 4% would be updated daily and would be determined by factors like number of video views and how much viewers are engaging with the post. 

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