What Are TikTok LIVE Gifts and How Do They Work?

TikTok LIVE Gifts is a handy feature on TikTok that allows viewers to react to your videos, showing appreciation for your efforts. It is one of the more popular ways for emerging TikTokers to make money on the platform and contributes to the healthy incomes that popular TikTok performers can now drive from their content. If you wonder how much you can make from your TikTok account, look at How Much do TikTokers Make with our bonus TikTok Influencer Earnings Estimator.

In addition, as you consider the possibilities for your fans paying you TikTok LIVE Gifts, look at our list of Highest Paid TikTok Influencers, where you can search for topic influencers by niche and location.

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What Are TikTok LIVE Gifts and How Do They Work?:

What are TikTok LIVE Gifts?

TikTok LIVE gifts are rewards fans can give to their favorite creators for hosting a TikTok LIVE video. Streamers must first make LIVE Gifting active before people can send them gifts. You can also collect Diamonds that you can redeem for money from TikTok. 

The sender of LIVE Gifts is subject to the platform's Virtual Items Policy. However, If you live in the European Economic Area, Switzerland, or the UK, TikTok has replaced its Virtual Items Policy with a Coins Policy and a Rewards Policy. These new policies came into force in June 2022. The Coins Policy targets TikTok users in the selected European regions who purchase virtual Coins to activate or access other virtual items or services on TikTok. For example, a viewer might purchase TikTok Coins to send as a TikTok LIVE Gift to your favorite streamer. In addition, the Coins Policy outlines how TikTok users can buy and use Coins, along with rules relating to withdrawal rights, refunds, and guarantees. 

TikTok's Rewards Policy is more relevant to influencers and other content creators on TikTok who live in the relevant European countries. This explains the requirements for people to collect Rewards on the platform. It applies to users of the Platform that participate in incentive programs offered by TikTok to incentivize users to interact with the Platform and create high-quality, engaging content – including those making TikTok LIVE streams. The main areas covered in the Rewards Policy relate to:

  1. Who is eligible to participate in a Program?
  2. How can you participate in a Program?
  3. Termination and suspension
  4. How do you collect Rewards?
  5. What can you do with Diamonds?
  6. How does the Diamond Payment Process work?
  7. Changes to a Program

The older Virtual Items Policy applies to the rest of the world (although India has its own version). It covers much of the same material as in the new European Coins and Rewards policies.

What is TikTok Creator Next?

TikTok has set up Creator Next to assist its creators in monetizing as they grow their communities. To be eligible for Creator Next, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Creator Next must be available in your location (it isn't currently available everywhere)
  • You must be 18 or older (19 in South Korea, 20 in Japan).
  • You need to meet a minimum number of followers and video views
  • You must have posted on TikTok at least three times in the last 30 days.
  • Your account must be in good standing, following TikTok's Community Guidelines and Terms of Service.
  • Business Accounts are ineligible to participate

If you believe you meet the above criteria, you can apply to join TikTok Creator Next by:

  1. Tap Profile in the bottom right of your TikTok screen
  2. Tap the 3-line (hamburger) icon in the top right to go to your Settings
  3. Tap Creator Tools, then tap Apply
  4. Follow any on-screen instructions

Once you've been accepted into TikTok Creator Next, you will gain access to:

  • Creator Fund
  • Creator Marketplace
  • Video Gifts
  • LIVE Gifts
  • Tips

How to Set up LIVE Gifts on TikTok

You must be at least eighteen (in most regions) to enable LIVE Gifts, and as we show below, TikTok also places further restrictions on those who can collect diamonds through LIVE Gifts. 

To set up LIVE Gifts:

  1. Tap Profile in the bottom right of your TikTok screen
  2. Tap the 3-line (hamburger) icon in the top right to go to your Settings
  3. Tap Creator Tools, then tap LIVE Gifts and follow the on-screen instructions

You also need to approve receiving Gifts on your other videos. To do this, you go through the same steps as above, but in step 3, tap Video Gifts, then tap Turn on Video Gifts to activate the process.

How People Can Send You Gifts During a LIVE Stream

Any adult viewer (over 18 in most regions and who complies with TikTok's Virtual Items/Coin policy if relevant) can send you a Gift if they like the video you are streaming, much as they can Gift you for your uploaded videos. By making a gift to you, the viewer indicates that they recognize and appreciate your creativity and work.

The process they go through to send you a LIVE gift is:

  1. During a LIVE video, tap the Gift icon at the bottom
  2. Choose the Gift they would like to give
  3. If they need to recharge their Coins, tap Recharge and follow the instructions.
  4. Below the Gift, tap Send.

Viewers will only be able to LIVE Gift if they see the Gift icon in the comments section of a video.

Collecting Diamonds Through LIVE Gifts

Once you have enabled LIVE Gifting, you can see them as you stream your video. Go LIVE as usual, but you will see gifts pop up as people decide to make them due to liking your content. At the end of your video, you will find the total number of people who have made Gifts to you in your TikTok LIVE summary details.

TikTok notes the number of gifts people give you and awards Diamonds to creators based on the popularity of their pre-recorded and LIVE videos. They base this on a range of factors, one of the most important being the number of gifts people have given them.

To be eligible to receive Diamonds because of your LIVE Gifts, you need to ensure:

  • You are part of the Creator Next program
  • You live in a location where LIVE Gifts are available 
  • You are at least 18 years old. Exceptions apply in South Korea (must be 19) and Japan (must be 20)
  • You've run your account for 30 days or more and have at least 1,000 followers
  • Your account is in good standing and meets TikTok's  Community Guidelines and Terms of Service
  • You aren't streaming live on a TikTok Business Account

Exchanging Diamonds for Cash

TikTok stresses that you can't purchase Diamonds, nor can you transfer or assign them to any other user. TikTok's Virtual Items Policy emphasizes that the "sale, barter, assignment, exchange, transfer or other disposal of any Diamonds, other than by us, is expressly prohibited." The wording in the newer European Rewards policy is different, but the meaning is the same. 

However, a creator can check their balance at any time and withdraw Diamonds in exchange for monetary compensation at a rate that TikTok calculates based on various factors, including the number of Diamonds a user has. You will need first to link a PayPal account to be able to withdraw money from TikTok. 

Earning TikTok Virtual Items from Live Videos

Earning TikTok Virtual Items from Live Videos

Advertisemint gives more details about TikTok Live Gifts. They indicate the worth of some virtual gifts in coins:

  • Panda: 5 coins
  • Italian Hand: 5 coins
  • Love Bang: 25 coins
  • Sun Cream: 50 coins
  • Rainbow Puke: 100 coins
  • Concert: 500 coins
  • I'm Very Rich: 1,000 coins
  • Drama Queen: 5,000 coins

TikTok's Diamonds are worth 50% of the value of coins, e.g., if one of your followers gifts you a Drama Queen (worth 5,000 coins), that is equivalent to 2,500 Diamonds. Each diamond is worth 5 cents. So, the Drama Queen will be worth $125. But TikTok retains 50% of what you earn, so when you cash in your 2,500 Diamonds, TikTok will pay you $62.50.

At the moment, TikTok requires you to make a minimum amount of $100 for a withdrawal and not take more than $1,000 a day.

What Other Types of Gifts Can Viewers Make on TikTok?

Remember that viewers can also send Gifts to TikTok channels that have uploaded normal (i.e., not LIVE) videos you may like. The process a viewer does to make a Gift on a traditional pre-recorded TikTok video is to:

  1. On the video you're watching, tap the Comments icon
  2. Next to Add comment..., tap the Gift icon
  3. Choose the Gift you'd like to send. You can choose from Classic gifts or Premium gifts
  4. If you need to recharge your Coins, tap Recharge and follow the instructions
  5. Write a comment and tap Send

People can't Gift on every type of TikTok video. In particular, the following types of videos are ineligible for TikTok Gifts (or indeed TikTok LIVE Gifts):

  • Duet and Stitch videos
  • Ads, sponsored content or promoted posts
  • Videos that violate TikTok's Community Guidelines

Best Practices for Gifting

While TikTok wants to encourage its users to gift to its talented streamers and creators, it is aware of potential misuses. As a result, it has suggested to creators that they engage in the following best practices:

  1. Show your appreciation to your audience for their gifts. Use phrases like, "Great job," "Thank you so much," and "This helps me so much, thank you!"
  2. Avoid making promises to your audiences for gifts or follows, e.g., don't tell your audience to "follow for follow," "Send Gifts, and I'll give you a shoutout," or "Share this LIVE, and I'll follow."

What is TikTok Live?

If you're unfamiliar with TikTok, you might be uncertain about our many references to "TikTok Live" in this article. Isn't TikTok a place where people upload short, usually funny, videos, often lip-syncing to music?

We have previously looked in more detail at TikTok Live Video: A Walkthrough for Marketers. In 2019, TikTok launched a Live feature where content creators can live stream their videos from the platform. In addition, TikTokers can connect with their followers in real-time using comments. And, as we've seen in this post, your audience might send you virtual gifts.

You can use live videos to cover a lot of content as TikTok hasn't yet restricted their duration. 

To unlock TikTok Live, you must meet the following conditions:

  • You should be at least 16 years old.
  • You should have a minimum of 1,000 followers (this number differs depending on location).

As we have seen above, you must meet additional criteria if you want to receive gifts.

To set up a Live Stream, click on the + button at the bottom center of the screen. You will see a red recording button near the bottom of your screen. Beneath that, you will see various options for video length and photo templates until you have the option LIVE. The red recording button will change to a GO LIVE button. Tap on that when you're ready to begin recording. 

Be careful with any music you may have playing in the background. Although you can use many music clips in private videos, there are limitations to music and commercial usage. However, TikTok does have a Royalty-Free Music Library brands can use in their live (and other) TikTok videos.

You can get creative and add a cover photo and video title to your TikTok Live video. Your caption should be enticing enough to get people to join your live stream and possibly even give you a TikTok Live gift. Remember that hashtags make your live stream more discoverable. 

About the Author
With over 15 years in content marketing, Werner founded Influencer Marketing Hub in 2016. He successfully grew the platform to attract 5 million monthly visitors, making it a key site for brand marketers globally. His efforts led to the company's acquisition in 2020. Additionally, Werner's expertise has been recognized by major marketing and tech publications, including Forbes, TechCrunch, BBC and Wired.