HotToks: Taylor Swift Eras Tour, #WeddingTok, and the Vanderpump Scandal

Vivian Zhou
June 12, 2023
Updated Feb 09, 2024

Welcome back to HotToks. This edition we report on how Taylor Swift's Eras Tour broke the internet, how #WeddingTok is taking over traditional wedding planning, and how the Vanderpump rules scandal turned into a silver lining for Ariana Madix.

How the Taylor Swift Eras Tour Charmingly Broke the Internet

Swifties, this one’s for you. As Taylor Swift and her band take over the U.S. for her Eras Tour, the content, merch, and outfits are taking over the internet and entering our orbit in more ways than one. No surprise here, but somehow her concert was perfectly made to be consumed online and in person.

Her fame is difficult even to wrap my head around—while the Eras Tour was in full swing, #erastour has racked up over 10B views, with fans blowing up every moment you can imagine from the show.

A few examples: some videos show a dad’s commitment to his Swiftie daughter, the whole stadium singing along to ‘Enchanted,’ Taylor Swift showing her commitment to her fans by singing in pouring rain at the Nashville show (the rain from this show now sold on eBay), her hometown show having thousands of fans sitting outside of the stadium, her defending fans against a security guard, Taylor’s dad seems to forget how big his daughter is, hundreds of concert GRWMs (beauty + fashion brands, step in), concert mishaps that are only charming when Taylor Swift does them, security guards being fans, proposals, the ‘Getaway Car’ ending, and of course, endless videos about the ‘Cruel Summer’ bridge.

Like how unbelievable is this? Fans are praising her work ethic (one commented, “her work ethic is impeccable.. I call out of work when I sneeze”), her devotion to her craft, her dedication to her fans (performing, at times, more than 40 songs), and lamenting over #PostErasTourDepression

The Taylor Nation is a notoriously huge force to reckon with, and this tour has solidified that even more. I mean, Glendale, Arizona, is now called “Swift City” in honor of the first stop in the tour. Fans are taking their outfits for the Eras Tour exceptionally seriously.

Though the spectacle is one preferably admired in person, some argue that “there are parts of the tour that feel developed for the algorithm,” like Swift’s performance of ‘Bejeweled,’ featuring the viral TikTok dance, or when she purposely leaves room for fans to do their concert chants (which in itself, has almost 16M views on TikTok).

This tour has consumed my FYP; she’s seemingly the only artist in the world who can connect this way with her fandom. In some ways, her going all out on this tour is seen as a response to her haters in the past (i.e., Kanye), all her ex-boyfriends, and critics who say she can’t sing or write music, but in other ways, it’s seen as a life-changing moment for all the fans who have stuck by her for all this time.

Either way, it’s hard to say whether she and her team meticulously crafted this tour for online consumption—I, for one, am glad there is coverage online. It’s been the craziest experience watching mundane moments blow up, but also great to enjoy her music, and the little moments that make her the songwriter and performer she is, even if it is by proxy.

#WeddingTok Upends Traditional Wedding Planning


We know TikTok is the one-stop shop for information, so why not save money on a wedding planner and browse TikTok instead? Tons of excited brides-to-be are turning to TikTok for inspiration to help plan their weddings.

The saying “out with the old, and in with the new” holds for the current wedding industry, especially now that TikTok influences it. 

Traditions like the bouquet toss are a thing of the past (because “it’s really mean to put all women in a room and fight for who’s gonna get married next”), favors (if any) are becoming more and more creative, and now, we’re welcoming mismatched bridesmaids dresses, and generally just more freedom away from the traditional rigidity of weddings. 

Couples give the bouquet to the couple who’s been married the longest, ask friends to officiate, hire a flower man instead of a flower girl, do group vows, and even replace the symbolic tiered wedding cake with pizza and ice cream

For brides-to-be looking to save money on event planning, it makes sense to go into TikTok to write down tips, tricks, and secrets on everything from the floral arrangements to the day-of schedules to signs that could be DIY-ed on Canva. There are even DIY wedding shoe tutorials on TikTok. In the age of the Dupe, it would be absurd not to DIY. 

#WeddingTok has over 7B views on the platform, and videographers-turned-influencers on TikTok are getting more and more business. 

With more weddings shared on social media, specifically TikTok, brides and grooms are getting their inspiration from the platform and doing viral—and cringey—things at their weddings: like dapping at the altar or flash-mob dancing.

In the age of TikTok, companies like David’s Bridal (which filed for bankruptcy in April,) and Signet Jewelers see a dip in business; ring sales and engagements report a slump. Companies need to change up their game if they want to serve the modern-day bride. 

According to Vishal Joshi, the cofounder of the wedding-planning platform Joy, “couples are now seeking the freedom to celebrate their weddings in the way that feels most authentic to them, so it’s time for us in the wedding industry to expand the definition of what a perfect day means.” 

Companies like Birdy Grey are seeing real-time results by turning to TikTok. Founder Grace Lee says, “we’ve gone viral a couple of times, and you’ll see it reflected in site traffic and sales that same day. The marrying generation is now Gen Z, so there’s a subset of people who are entirely skipping Instagram and going to TikTok to plan their weddings.” 

“The marrying generation is now Gen Z, so there’s a subset of people who are entirely skipping Instagram and going to TikTok to plan their weddings.” 

- Grace Lee, Founder of Birdy Grey

The wedding industry has always been lucrative, but as the next generation starts planning their weddings, they’re looking for a brand that gets them and will help them bring their vision to life, no matter how un-traditional it may be.

A Silver Lining to a Vanderpump Scandal

The cast of ‘Vanderpump Rules’ are cashing in and getting that bag. Recently, social media ads prominently feature multiple cast members, and we’re here to unpack all of the successful ones and talk about why they worked. 

“Vanderpump Rules” star Ariana Madix recently partnered with Duracell, and we are here for it. In the viral TikTok, commenters praise for Madix for “turning heartbreak into profit.” 

@duracell Don’t settle for anything less than premium, and that includes your batteries too. #TeamAriana ♬ original sound - Duracell

The 26-second video has 2.2M views since just being posted and prominently features Madix poking fun at her co-star and ex-boyfriend, Tom Sandoval, and the months-long affair with their co-star Raquel Leviss. The cheating scandal took the internet by storm and drew many new fans; Tom is now affectionately named “Scandoval” by viewers. 

The TikTok clip contains not-so-subtle digs at Sandoval, including throwing away a bottle of white nail polish (a Sandoval staple), stepping into a closet full of paper towels and toilet paper (IYKYK), saying that she’s “done with anything basic” and “looking for something premium, something long-lasting” which was the chef’s kiss way of bringing in that “Duracell is guaranteed to last 12 years,” which is, as Madix says, “much better than 10.”

She’s also been partnering with BIC and UberOne–again, smash-hits. BIC saw an opportunity to partner with Madix to generate a quick-witted social media play to showcase the brand’s new EasyRinse line of razors, with the tagline “All Shave. No Clog.” 

The ad, featured on BIC’s social channels, linear TV, and YouTube TV, has boosted the sales of the EasyRinse razor by 35% in the two weeks following the initial launch of the post, which “unlocked the highest social media engagement for BIC’s razor division within the past two years.”

Katie Potocki, the marketing director of blade excellence for BIC, says that “I think a lot of people can relate to what has happened with the relationship with Ariana, we felt that it matched her personality and particularly matched BIC’s personality,” which is a recipe for success. Since its launch, the TikTok video has gained more than 1M views on the platform, the Reels gained more than 20M, and the YouTube video gained nearly 500K.

Potocki notes that in these quick, culturally relevant moments, they had to be fast; the time between ideation and production was around three weeks, saying, “the razor category is incredibly competitive and ensuring that we relate not just in our feature message but also what’s current, what’s cultural, what matters, is really important.”

For UberOne, castmates Lala Kent and Scheana Shay accompany Madix, where they record a remix to Scheana’s “Good as Gold” and dropped merch that says, “Call an Uber, Not Your Ex.” 

In the song, they sing out about “saving on rides and eats” and that “UberOne is good as gold…it’s better than gold actually, it’s like freedom,” an apparent reference to the drama with Tom Sandoval. 

As part of this campaign, Ariana has also teamed up with Boys Lie for a merch drop, which will exclusively be available on the Uber Eats app in LA, with 100% of the proceeds donated to support the Alexandria House Women’s Shelter. A corporate social responsibility slay!

Though many praise Ariana for cashing that check, she’s also received backlash for profiting from Scandoval. She addresses this in a Glamour interview, where she talks about saying “yes” to nearly every single partnership because “money is money,” and she wants to make enough to take care of her family, to not worry about it ever. This moment won’t be relevant forever, so it’s good to see her (and brands) take the initiative and risks regarding reactionary and culturally relevant advertising. It shows that being quick on your feet does pay off!

Thanks for reading!

- Viv


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