How to Make Money on TikTok Without Followers

Written by Zoe King ✏️

Last updated June 23, 2024

So, you want to know how to make money on TikTok without followers, right?

Is it even possible to make money without a large audience on the platform? If yes, how much can you make?

Well, I’ll answer these questions and more on this page, breaking down the strategies and opportunities that can help you turn your TikTok presence into income.

How to Make Money on TikTok Without Followers

Before I show you how to make money on TikTok without followers, let’s first address the question: what does “without followers” mean?

Essentially, this refers to having anywhere from 0 to 999 followers.

So, when we talk about making money without followers, it means doing so with fewer than 1,000 followers.

The truth is that at this stage in your TikTok journey, you may not really make much money using TkTok features.

TikTok only starts providing certain privileges and capabilities to your account once you reach 1,000 followers.

To make money, you’ll need to pivot by leveraging “non-TikTok” avenues.

Here’s how to do that:

How to Make Money on TikTok Without Followers

1. Skill-based Monetization (Freelancing, Consulting, etc.)

With a follower count of 0 to 999, TikTok can be a powerful platform for showcasing your skills, whether it’s freelancing, consulting, or other skill-driven approaches.

By demonstrating your expertise, you can attract clients willing to pay for your services or knowledge.

Use TikTok to drive traffic to your freelance website and profiles on platforms like Fiverr or Upwork or advertise your consulting services directly.

This approach allows you to leverage your skills and generate income, even without a large following.

2. Digital Products

If you have digital products such as eBooks, online courses, or design templates, TikTok can be a great platform to market them without thousands of followers.

Create engaging content that showcases the value of your products and directs viewers to where they can purchase them.

Digital products can provide a steady stream of passive income, especially if they cater to a niche audience.

3. Your Own Merch

In addition to digital products, you can also promote physical products on TikTok.

Whether you’re selling handmade crafts, apparel, or any other tangible items, TikTok’s visual platform allows you to creatively showcase your products.

Use TikTok to highlight the unique features of your items, demonstrate their use, and direct viewers to your online store.

Even with a smaller following, effective content can drive sales and grow your business.

4. TikTok In-feed Ads

If you don’t have a lot of followers, TikTok ads can be your best friend.

These ads allow you to reach a broader audience and effectively promote your offerings.

Whether you’re selling freelance services, physical items, or digital products, TikTok ads can help you get your message in front of potential customers.

By strategically using ads, you can maximize your reach and boost your income without relying on a large follower base.

5. UGC for Brands

Companies are increasingly seeking user-generated content (UGC) creators to develop content that feels natural and authentic.

By creating content that a company can post on their own pages, you can earn money without needing a large following.

Whether it’s a short video shoutout, a product demo, a review, or a testimonial, being a UGC creator allows you to monetize your content, producing engaging content for brands, even as a small creator.

You can check out accounts like Visa to see examples of UGC content:

This approach leverages your creativity and ability to produce engaging videos that resonate with a brand’s audience.

How and Why You Need to Get TikTok Followers

As mentioned earlier, TikTok assigns certain benefits to your account once you reach 1,000 followers.

This lifts some limitations and increases your potential to make money.

In my experience, gaining followers on TikTok is easier than on most other platforms like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

Why? Because TikTok’s algorithm is built to give more opportunities to accounts with fewer followers.

What are the Easiest Ways to Get Followers on TikTok?

  • Posting Original Content: Consistently posting original, high-quality, and creative content resonates well with the audience and enriches the TikTok ecosystem, resulting in more followers.
  • Interacting with Other People’s LIVE Videos: Engaging with LIVE videos that have a large viewership in your niche can help you gain visibility and attract followers.
  • Commenting on Other Accounts’ Posts: Leaving thoughtful and engaging comments on popular posts can draw attention to your profile.
  • Taking Advantage of Trends: Participating in trending challenges and using popular hashtags can boost your visibility and follower count.

In addition to discussing how to make money on TikTok without followers, I want to show you more advanced TikTok monetization approaches.

How to Make Money on TikTok with 1,000 Followers (and Above)

Once you’ve reached the milestone of 1,000 followers on TikTok, you will unlock certain features and privileges, marking a pivotal moment in your TikTok income journey.

In this section, I’ll discuss TikTok monetization opportunities for accounts ranging from 1,000 to 9,999.

1. TikTok LIVE

TikTok Live is a section on TikTok where content creators can connect with followers through live streaming.

During TikTok LIVE, viewers can send you LIVE Gifts such as roses, money guns, lions, and numerous others.

These gifts translate to Diamonds, which is part of the platform’s virtual currency.  This can be converted into real money and transferred to your preferred external account.

To start a LIVE, you must be 18 years old or reach the age of majority in your country and have at least 1,000 followers.

As a beginner creator, your LIVE videos may not always have a steady stream of viewers or engagement. The solution is to go live more often to build a loyal audience.

While the duration is totally up to you, TikTok recommends keeping your LIVE around 30 minutes or longer.

They also recommend posting a video before your LIVE to make it easy for viewers to join via the For You feed.

Additionally, TikTok has a feature called Weekly Rankings. This is a list of top Creators based on the number of Diamonds collected.

The top 20 LIVE creators each week get cool prizes.

2. TikTok Subscription Community

TikTok Subscription Community is a feature that allows you to create a paid community of your most engaged followers who can support you through a subscription.

The standard tier is set to $5.99, but you can choose a price from the range of available options, which starts at $2.99 and goes up to $99.99 USD per month. TikTok users will pay in their local currency.

After setting up your Subscription package, you can begin providing your Subscription Community with fun perks and benefits such as badges, Sub-only videos, and Sub-only LIVE sessions.

To access the Live subscription feature as a content creator, you must be at least 18 with a minimum of 1,000 followers.

3. TikTok Shop for Affiliate Marketing (or Product Sales)

TikTok Shop is an exciting feature that allows you to sell products directly through the platform.

But if you don’t want to sell products directly, TikTok Shop also gives you the opportunity to monetise your content by collaborating with sellers via affiliate programs.

Here’s how to make money on TikTok Shop:

  • As a seller, you can leverage the TikTok Creator Marketplace to seamlessly partner with content creators who can sell to their audiences on your behalf.
  • As a creator, you can access a number of products to promote in the Affiliate Product Marketplace and unlock the opportunity to earn commission.

Your audience will be able to find these shoppable products through a product link on your TikTok videos (shoppable videos), on your store page, via the product showcase tab, or through LIVE shopping.

They’ll be able to place orders and check out without leaving TikTok.

At the time of writing, TikTok Shop is available in the following countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Vietnam.

To create a TikTok Shop, you must meet a follower count requirement, such as 5,000 followers in the United States and 1,000 in the UK.

You can create your TikTok Shop at the TikTok Seller Center.

How to Make Money on TikTok Without Followers

You can also run your own affiliate marketing without a TikTok Shop.

This will require you to have a link in your bio to direct your audience to a landing page featuring your affiliate products.

4. TikTok Creator Marketplace

The TikTok Creator Marketplace connects creators with brands seeking sponsored content. It empowers creators to collaborate with brands on paid and reward-based campaigns.

Even with a small following, you can find brands willing to collaborate if your content aligns with their target audience.

The marketplace simplifies the process of finding and negotiating deals, making it easier for you to land partnerships and earn money through sponsored posts.

If you meet the requirements (such as age, followers, video content, and engagement), you might get an invitation to join, or you can apply. You must use a Personal (or Creator) account, not a Business account.

As of this writing, Creator Marketplace is available in 24 countries/regions.

When you submit your application, it will be reviewed, and you will receive a notification regarding your application status. If your application is not successful in the initial review, you may reapply after 30 days.

After joining the Creator Marketplace, visit the TikTok Studio and tap “Monetization.” Next, tap “Profile” to manage your creator profile.

You should complete your profile and set a base rate for sponsored videos, which can be negotiated on an individual campaign basis.

When brands send you a collaboration invitation, you will receive notifications via in-app, email, and SMS.

According to a report released earlier this year by Influencer Marketing Hub, TikTok nano-influencers (1,000 to 10,000 followers) typically earn $5 to $25 per video, while micro-influencers (10,000 to 50,000 followers) can charge $25 to $125 per video, and mid-tier influencers (50,000 to 500,000 followers) can charge $125 – $1,250 per video.

How to Make Money on TikTok Without Followers

In another report, the top 10 TikTokers make between $40k to $100k per post.

So, you can see why I’m including this TikTok monetization method here—it applies across the spectrum, whether you have 1,000 followers or 10,000+, as I’ll discuss next.

How to Make Money on TikTok with 10,000 Followers (and Above)

In this section, I’ll show you monetization opportunities for accounts with 10,000 followers or more—think hundreds of thousands or millions of followers—but still relevant for those interested in learning how to make money on TikTok without followers.

With 10,000 followers or more, you unlock significant monetization opportunities and can capitalize on a larger, more engaged audience.

1. TikTok Creator Rewards Program

TikTok Creator Rewards Program allows you to earn rewards with longer video content.

The aim is to encourage TikTokers to keep creating engaging content.

To be eligible, you must have at least 10,000 followers and at least 100,000 video views over the last 30 days.

You must post original content that’s at least one minute long and need to be at least 18 years old to participate. Also, only use a Personal account, not a Business account.

Over time, the TikTok Creator Rewards Program has taken on different shapes, including the TikTok Creator Fund and the latest Creativity Program.

The Creativity Program pays between $4 and $8 per 1,000 views, which is considerably higher than what creators were getting from the predecessor program.

The rewards program is currently open to creators in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, South Korea, France, and Brazil.

2. TikTok Series

TikTok Series is a feature that allows creators to monetize their premium content by charging a set price for access.

Series enables eligible creators to post Collections of premium content behind a paywall which viewers can purchase.

Each Series can contain a maximum of 80 videos, each up to 20 minutes in length.

This method works well if you have niche expertise or unique content that viewers are willing to pay for.

Creators in specific regions who are 18 years old or older, have an account that is at least 30 days old with a minimum of 10,000 followers, have posted more than three public videos in the last 30 days, and have received at least 1,000 authentic video views in the last 30 days are eligible to join Series.

Creators with fewer than 10,000 followers who meet the above requirements can apply by providing a link to premium content they’ve previously sold on other platforms via the Creator Center in the TikTok app.


With the insights and strategies I’ve shared from my experience with TikTok, I hope that you have not only understood how to make money on TikTok without followers but also learned about various monetization opportunities available for creators at all levels.

While it’s entirely possible to earn income without a large following, I recommend also focusing on growing your audience.

Increasing your follower count can enhance your earning potential and unlock even more monetization options.

How many TikTok followers do you have, and which of the above monetization strategies resonates with you most? Feel free to talk to me!

TikTok Monetization FAQ

How to withdraw money from TikTok?

To withdraw money from TikTok, go to your profile, access the “Settings and Privacy” menu, and select “Balance.” From there, you can transfer your earnings to a PayPal account or other supported withdrawal methods.

How much money is 1 million views on TikTok?

The TikTok Creativity Program offers generous payouts, ranging from $4.00 to $8.00 per 1,000 views, which translates to $4,000 to $8,000 per 1 million views. This is significantly higher than the Creator Fund’s payments, which generally ranged between $200 and $400 per 1,000,000 views.

How to make money on TikTok by watching videos?

Some programs and third-party apps offer small rewards or cash for watching TikTok videos. However, these are not officially endorsed by TikTok and should be approached with caution.

How to make money on TikTok without showing your face?

To make money on TikTok without showing your face, you can focus on creating faceless videos, AI-generated content, screen recordings, animations, and other video styles that do require showing your face.

Does it cost money to send gifts on TikTok?

Yes, sending gifts on TikTok costs real money. Users purchase coins with real currency, which they can then use to send various gifts during LIVE videos.

How much money do you get from TikTok LIVE gifts?

The value of TikTok LIVE gifts varies depending on the specific gift. TikTok takes a percentage (up to 50%) of the coins spent on gifts, and creators receive the remaining amount in diamonds, which can be converted to cash.

How much money is a galaxy on TikTok?

A Galaxy gift on TikTok is worth approximately 1,000 coins, which is equivalent to about $13 to $15. Keep in mind that TikTok will keep a certain percentage of any gift you send to your favorite creators.

How much money is a lion on TikTok?

A Lion gift is one of the most valuable gifts on TikTok, worth around 29,999 coins. This is equivalent to about $400.

How much money is a TikTok universe?

The TikTok Universe is the most expensive gift on the platform, worth 44,999 coins. This equates to roughly $565.

How much money is a rose on TikTok?

A Rose gift is worth 1 coin, which translates to about $0.01 USD for the creator after deductions. The TikTok logo, magic lamp, and ice cream cone are all worth the same.

How much is a money gun on TikTok?

The Money Gun gift is worth 500 coins. The Sweet Memories, You’re Amazing, and Cuddle with Me gifts all cost the same.

Editorial Disclosure

Every piece of content we publish is developed by knowledgeable professionals with real-world experience and undergoes rigorous research and fact-checking processes.

About the Author

Zoé King is a successful digital entrepreneur and creator who founded SHiFTCADEMY.COM as a way to help awesome people like you find legitimate and future-proof income ideas so you can make money and shift your life forward!

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