TikTok‘s new monetization option is good news for long-form creators. The video app has launched the beta version of its TikTok Creativity Program, which promises “higher revenue potential” than the preexisting TikTok Creator Fund.
According to a blog post from TikTok, the Creativity Program will pay partners who “publish high-quality, original content longer than one minute.” As it designed its new revenue stream, TikTok paid attention to the shortcomings of its other monetization tools. Its Creator Fund has been criticized as an insufficient source of income for its ever-growing user base.
“We developed the Creativity Program based on learnings and feedback from our creators on our creator solutions, including the TikTok Creator Fund,” reads the blog post. “The Creativity Program Beta will initially be available to creators by invite-only and then become available to all eligible US creators in the coming months.”
Subscribe to get the latest creator news
TikTok said that Creator Fund recipients will be able to “switch” to the Creativity Program once it becomes widely available. The use of that word implies that membership in the two revenue-sharing programs will be available on an either-or basis. The Creativity Program is only available to creators ages 18 and up in the United States, France, and Brazil.
The announcement of the Creativity Program came one week after The Information reported that TikTok was testing a revamped version of its Creator Fund. The report claimed that eligibility for the new program would favor long-form videos and would be restricted to creators with at least 100,000 followers. TikTok’s blog post claims that Creativity Program applicants must “meet the minimum follower and video view requirements,” but no exact parameters haven’t been confirmed just yet.
The Creativity Program is all about watch time
The ByteDance-owned app signaled its interest in long-form content when it expanded its maximum video length to ten minutes a year ago. As it inches into YouTube’s territory, TikTok is taking some pages out of its competitor’s book. It is experimenting with a horizontal format that looks like the YouTube player, and its video scrubbing thumbnails help viewers seek specific timestamps within lengthier uploads.
By increasing support for long-form content, TikTok is heeding a constant trend in the online video industry. Over the past decade, the value of raw viewership and follower counts has diminished, with watch time and engagement emerging as favored metrics. The widespread adoption of short-form video feeds — and the outsized viewership numbers those feeds deliver — has only accelerated this shift.
So even though TikTok pioneered the short-form feed, it is now looking to add more long-form offerings to your For You Page. The Creativity Program aims to boost watch time and engagement, and TikTok is hoping that its new financial lifeline lets creators “unlock more exciting, real-world opportunities.”