The Washington Post only started its TikTok account last May, but it has already amassed 23 million likes and 550,000 followers.
The 143-year-old paper’s unlikely popularity on a platform mainly used by teens is all down to Dave Jorgenson. Using dad jokes, wit and latching onto the latest memes, his TikTok posts successfully highlight the paper’s brand while exposing teen viewers to a variety of reporters and news stories. The account regularly features cameos from presidential candidates, his dog and Sam, a talking can of Spam.
Part of the Post’s strategy is to use the social media platform to cultivate new audiences and new revenue streams in an industry constantly searching for both. Jorgenson has worked at the Post since 2017, when he was hired to head the publication’s “department of satire.” At that time, his job description included more traditional web videos. He used a seven-page proposal to convince his bosses to let him have a go at TikTok.