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Dancing is the key to going viral on TikTok, and Superdry knows it

WORDS BY MAEVE KERR-CROWLEY

The label has partnered with Universal Music and Sarah Magusara for a very clever brand campaign.

Contrary to popular belief, there’s no shame in admitting that you spend every unoccupied moment in a day scrolling through TikTok. Okay maybe a little bit of shame – yes, laundry, I’ll get to you eventually – but only a little.

While many people probably downloaded the app only recently to kill unprecedented quarantine free time, creators have been plugging away building their profiles on the platform for years.

And, like the holy lands of Instagram before it, TikTok is now both an empire and a goldmine for some of its biggest users.

The app is a vast pool of predominantly young creatives starting and following trends. While my own For You page is mostly full of dumb comedy and obscure, potentially embarrassing references, occasionally videos sneak in where talented users show off their dancing skills, fashion sense or scarily accurate celebrity impressions.

Clicking on any of these profiles will show you just how seriously some of these TikTokers take their online presence. Just like Instagram influencers, they’re looking to make a career out of their content and become, for lack of a better term, ‘TikTok famous’.

Which is why it’s no surprise that brands are starting to jump on the TikTok train and tap influencers for new campaigns. Superdry, for example, named online personality Sarah Magusara as one of the faces of its AW20 campaign earlier this year.

The 18-year-old’s profile consists largely of dancing videos, and has been up and running since before the app rebranded from Music.ly to TikTok back in 2018. Sarah is a self-taught hip hop dancer, who joined a local dance crew a few years ago in order to explore different genres and styles.

While she’s been posting on the platform for a couple of years now, she saw her audience expand last year after announcing she was pregnant with her now eight-month-old baby, Zamira.

“I posted when I was 13 weeks all the way to 30 weeks,” she explains. “So my audience was basically on the pregnancy journey as well.”

Her most-watched videos on the app are the first she posted after her pregnancy, introducing her viewers to Zamira. Now, as well as a ridiculously cute baby who makes regular cameos on her account, Sarah has more than 13 million TikTok followers.

She’s still all about dancing though, constantly sharing trending routines set to popular songs across the platform. So after getting involved with a campaign shoot for Superdry, the brand gave Sarah the task of choreographing an original dance to show off its latest collection.

@sarahmagusaraCan you move my way? @superdry ##SDMyWay♬ Where It Hurts – eleven7four

Dubbed Superdry My Way, the campaign encourages users to copy or duet – those TikToks you see where two videos are shown side by side, with one user following or reacting to another – Sarah’s routine in their own Superdry fits. Other high profile Australian TikTokers posted their own versions of the choreo in less than 12 hours, and Superdry My Way has already been viewed by more than 35 million people. 

Of course, anyone who’s spent any time on TikTok knows a video is nothing without the right audio, and that’s even more relevant to the dancing side of the app. To give Sarah the perfect track to work with, Superdry teamed up with Universal Music and its New Zealand-based artists Eleven7four.

The duo’s debut single ‘Where it Hurts’ also features Tayla Parx, who co-wrote everyone’s favourite breakup bop, ‘Thank u, Next’. All three artists were eager to jump on board for the campaign, and were rewarded by the video’s success in exposing new audiences to the track.

@roryelizaDo it with passion or not at all💖 @superdry ##sdmyway go follow them😊😊 ##dance ##foryou ##foryoupage ##viral ##trending ##fyp♬ Where It Hurts – eleven7four

Brothers behind Eleven7four, Shingi and Muche Murare, say of the collaboration, “When we heard that our first major single ‘Where it Hurts’ was going to be used for the Superdry campaign, we were stoked. The new range is fire, and the song fits so perfectly with the campaign.” 

According to Sarah, the right song is vital for coming up with her own choreography, which often takes hours to plan, perfect and shoot. Luckily, Eleven7four’s single was right up her alley.

“I love it. I love any song that’s easy to dance to, so the track is dope,” she says excitedly. “If it has a good beat, if it’s got different speeds and some slower parts. When the sound is just so me, it speaks to me.”

@thejacksonjansenOkay but how cute is mini tho @sarahmagusara 😍##SDMyWay @superdry♬ Where It Hurts – eleven7four

On behalf of anyone who’s ever spent too long on social media and found themselves thinking, ‘Maybe I should be an influencer’, I ask Sarah what she thinks the secret is to going viral – outside of having a cute baby, of course.

“I have to admit, the videos I see that get famous or go viral are people just having fun with it and trying a trend or challenge or dance,” she explains. “Luck is also included, but just have fun with it, be real with it.”

Translation: tamp down your embarrassment, stop ignoring that voice in your head telling you to learn a TikTok dance, and get out the camera. We suggest Sarah’s profile as your inspiration starting point.

superdry.com.au

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