Austin Peay alum gains 1.4 million followers on TikTok

After downloading the TikTok app around November 2019, Graves reluctantly posted a video, thinking that not many viewers would see it. She had no followers at the time.

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – After downloading the TikTok app around November 2019, Graves reluctantly posted a video, thinking that not many viewers would see it. She had no followers at the time.

Instead, the video went viral, almost overnight.

“Originally, I wanted to delete my first video,” Graves said. “I was so paranoid from the response that I was getting, thousands of comments, and the rush of people coming in and looking at my stuff. I really hated it at the beginning because I didn’t know how to process that much attention.”

Graves continued, “I’ve learned over time to just not read comments, keep posting, and not really care because there have been really great opportunities that have come from this, but I think when that first happened, I was just really freaked out because of having that much attention,” she said. “And the people online, they have no filter. They don’t understand that there’s a person on the other end.”

In the press release, Graves was birthed from her unique talent of combining the art of yodeling with a comic spin. After recognizing that more people enjoyed her talent than those who disliked it, Graves continued to post more videos and realized a greater sense of confidence within her newfound craft.

“My videos are so silly,” Graves said. “Almost all of them are just me poking fun at myself. I like to have a good time on TikTok.”

Her follower base skyrocketed, despite her novice skill level within the platform initially. But Graves was no novice to the skillset behind operating a social media account.

Graves attended Austin Peay State University and was employed as a student for the Department of Public Relations & Marketing, where she became proficient in operating the school’s social media accounts. She helped create photo and video content and scheduled the generation of the content for the pages. She graduated in 2017.

“I think it gave me a greater understanding of what people like on different platforms,” she said. “APSU was kind of the start of it, with me working in social media. It gave me a greater understanding of what’s going to work on TikTok.”

And now Graves is producing her first single. Aside from that, she is also partnering with brands and companies because of her exposure on social media.

Although she is furloughed from her full-time job, to which she plans on returning, she now dedicates substantial time to creating content with the hopes of sharing her vocal skills and invoking laughter in her audience. Even when she does return to her previous employer, she fully intends on continuing to generate videos for her followers.

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