TikTok is one of the fastest-growing social media platforms in the world, with millions of young users. When we noticed this trend, we knew immediately that we could reach lots of people there who we otherwise would have missed.
Especially in the year of Germany’s federal election, we wanted to take young people by the virtual hands and introduce them to the world of politics.
Dedicated to politics
The TikTok channel @duhastdiewahl was founded in February 2021 and is dedicated to imparting political knowledge to young people between the ages of 14 and 19. As the host and manager of the channel, it is my role to explain important issues to the target audience. That includes bringing top politicians to the platform and asking them questions that are interesting to young people.
For a traditional media company like Funke, it is important to reach new potential readers and prove how advanced journalism can be. We want young people to know that they can trust professional journalists like us – and that we’re not as boring as they may think.
Funke is one of Germany’s first media companies to cover political topics on TikTok. As this platform is originally known for comedy and dance videos, civic education is a challenge – and one that we happily accepted.
Serious but fun
Funke’s TikTok videos deal with serious issues but still look fun and modern. We use typical TikTok tools to adapt to the creative environment of the platform. With filters, emojis, and sounds, Funke is creating entertaining videos which provide educational value. Young people are learning new things while simply having fun with us.
We take the approach of a big sister who is here to explain everything to the community. It is not uncommon for questions from the viewers to be the basis for new videos. But they are not the only sources when we are looking for new topics to explain. I also talk about current political events to make sure our followers are always well informed. To do this, I often take articles from Funke’s newspapers and use the information to create new videos – which makes for a great symbiosis between traditional journalism and the modern TikTok channel.
In less than one year, DuHastDieWahl gained almost 70,000 followers, while some of the videos have reached more than 3 million viewers. It is Funke’s most successful social media channel of all time.
But to us, this project is far more than an effective step to raise brand awareness. Thanks to this channel, young people get to know the importance of independent journalism. Funke acts against hate speech and fake news on social media.
If we want educated citizens, we have to teach them the values of democracy as early as possible. The perfect place for this mission is the place where they spend most of their time: TikTok.