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Local ranchers report 'significant' success from using TikTok

TikTok, the video platform and social media sensation sweeping the nation, is moving beyond entertainment and trying to help businesses and entrepreneurs make money moves—not by making ads, but by putting themselves out there in the form of 90-second clips.

Take it from Pati Jacobs and Max Kruemcke, owners of Hill Country-local Bastrop Cattle Co., who joined the platform a little over a week ago to talk about their grass-fed beef and have already reported a "significant" sales bump. Kruemcke, @maxjcookie on the app, once went viral to the tune of nine million views.

Bastrop Cattle Co.'s TikToks do not have a high-production value, nor do they look like something you would see on a social media influencer's feed, but they show someone more valuable to the app's audience: real people running a small business.

"The more that I was working with the cattle, the more that I would go and film with them, people just kept on going wild for it," Kruemcke said. "It was so confusing because it was not a high production value sort of scenario, it's just me walking around."

Now the most downloaded app in the app store with 100 million active users in the U.S., TikTok is still a relatively new trend to about two-thirds of Americans. Around 17% of users who are already on the app are hesitant to post, but Mike Marone, from TikTok's global client services team, said the company wants to change that because the app is a platform for "authentic" personalities that lends itself to small businesses.

TikTok said part of the appeal of the app is that creators don't have to chase followers; the algorithm uses hashtag organization to connect users to what they want to see on their "For You Page" and vice versa, helping businesses to target audiences.

In fact, #SmallBusiness has more views than any other hashtag to date—44 billion and counting.


Austin businesses are jumping on board since the app has risen to prominence: Austin Beerworks, Sunroom Rentals, the City of Austin and Texas Bee Works are all using TikTok to connect with the community.

With only 16 followers, Bastrop Cattle Co. said they've already gained between eight and 10 new repeat customers.

"We're a company of three people. That is everything, and the marketing and budget for most of our customers are word of mouth," Kruemcke said. "The results were way better than any other platform that we had attempted this sort of thing before."

TikTok isn't the only app to think outside the box and jump into the professional sphere—Austin-based Bumble launched a professional networking version of the app, modeled after the traditional swiping method, called Bumble Bizz in 2017. The spin-off now has several million active users.


Tito's releases (not so?) ugly sweater line for the holidays, profits to charity

Tito's Handmade Vodka

Show your love for Tito's and for the community this year with a wide selection of not that ugly, uglyish, ugly, uglier, and ugliest holiday sweaters.

There's lots choose from, and plenty of accessories like scarves and socks, plus gear for your dog, too.

All of the items can be purchased online or at the Love, Tito’s Retail Store in Austin, TX. 100% of all net proceeds from online or in-store purchases go to one of the nonprofits we’ve teamed up with.

Click here to see the entire collection in the Tito's store.

Mac and Cheese Fest and Free Art Exhibit
Waterloo Greenway, Good Vibrations Installation

🗓 All weekend

🎨 Creek Show Art Exhibit

Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities

All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park

✨ Mozart's Light Show

This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.

6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703

🗓 Saturday

🥊 Kickboxing in the Park

This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.

10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park

🛍 The Front Market

Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.

11 a.m - 5 p.m | 📍Ani's Day and Night - 7107 E Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78741

🗓 Sunday

🧀 Mac and Cheese Fest

Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.

11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway