Image credit: Emily Bauman

TikTok offers huge viral traction for music and Beyoncé has just reaffirmed that potential with Texas Hold ‘Em.

Who else but Beyoncé could have a hit song and a viral trend on TikTok? Well, actually, most artists can take advantage of music marketing on TikTok with huge viral potential on songs. Beyoncé has just reproven what that success looks like.

With her new single ‘Texas Hold ‘Em‘, Beyoncé has found an enamoured audience beyond streaming services. The number of videos using her track tripled in a week between 18th February and 25th February, with more than 224,000 videos using her single on Sunday. Alongside her viral success on TikTok, the singles position climbed from No. 2 to No.1 on the Hot 100 chart.

Former vice president of A&R strategy for Universal Music Group, Nima Nasseri writes: “The virality of this Beyoncé record shows you the power of the platform.” Nasseri helped run campaigns for artists to find them traction on TikTok. Talking of the video platform’s potential for artists, he says: “It’s still there. You can’t discount it.”

This direct translation shows that the returns of viral music trends on TikTok go beyond the videos, and mean lasting musical performance for songs and artists. Of course, Beyoncé is well established. So, what does that traction mean for a smaller or less relevant artist?

TikTok’s potential for emerging artists

TikTok has seen the runaway success of numerous artists over the years. The potential of your song being picked up for a trend on TikTok means exposure to potentially billions of viewers, and encourages other creators to pick up on and use your music, snowballing the impact.

For artists with a small audience, the sudden exposure to millions of viewers on TikTok means a lot. Reaching new fans is the hardest thing for a new or rising artist, and even if a fraction of the viewers of a trend enjoy and search the song used in a video it means a new listener, a potential new buyer of merch and concert tickets, and another person who might spread the word about you.

Even popular artists can see huge success from trends on TikTok. Fleetwood Mac are hardly an underground artist, but after a video of a guy drinking cranberry juice and skating to Fleetwood Mac’s Dreams, it returned to the charts and saw record streaming numbers for the band.

At RouteNote, we offer free, independent music distribution to TikTok. This means that artists can upload unlimited releases to their library for use in videos at no cost. Not only does this provide you the potential to go viral and expand your reach, you also get paid every time your music is used in videos.

Do all short-form video platforms have potential for artists?

It’s not all about TikTok. There are a number of rivals in the short-form, vertical video arena and those platforms also enjoy a strong relationship with music. Platforms like YouTube Shorts and Instagram Reels both offer an alternative to TikTok for content.

Only a few years ago, the strategy for major labels focused on finding trends on TikTok. Now these other platforms are being considered more. Particularly in the wake of UMG and TikTok’s fallout, meaning that even songs featuring UMG artists won’t be licensed for use on TikTok.

Speaking of TikTok, Shorts, and Reels, director of marketing at ATG Group Jen Darmafall shares that “artists and their teams are putting more strategy into all three platforms now.” She adds: “Before, they would just make content that works for TikTok and then post it on the other platforms.”

The translation of a success on Reels and Shorts to a track’s performance is slowly developing too. Sawyer Hill saw a recent viral hit with their single ‘Look at the Time‘ following success in Reels content. Ben Locke, the man responsible for signing Sawyer Hill, says: “I’ve never seen virality from Reels like this that drove consumption in a meaningful way.”

Up until now TikTok has been the focus for short-form and vertical success, but the landscape is clearly broadening. At RouteNote, we can deliver your music to all three video platforms for the best chance at success and exposure.

Upload your music to all of the top video and music services for free at