FRANKLIN Wis. — Nick Christiansen is the man behind the TikTok account @milweb1. It’s also the name of his business in Franklin, where he makes vinyl banners, yard signs, posters and other decals. 

What You Need To Know

  • Nick Christiansen is the man behind the TikTok account @milweb1

  • He owns a vinyl banner, yard sign, and decal company with the same name

  • He first started posting on TikTok in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, and quickly went viral

  • Today, he has 2.6 million followers, and has an estimated 1.5 billion views on his videos on the app alone

He first started posting on TikTok about three years ago. 

“So I went to make a video and one video pretty much went viral. I think it was like two million within a week,” Christiansen recalled regarding a TikTok he posted during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. “I gained 10,000 followers within that week, and it was really exciting and it just gives you the adrenaline to make more content.”

And that’s exactly what he’s been doing ever since. His TikTok page is full of videos of him boxing up yard signs that people order from him — a lot of them humorous, like a yard sign that reads, “My Neighbor is a Karen.”

Today — he has 2.6 million followers, 62.1 million likes on his content, and has an estimated 1.5 billion views on TikTok alone. 

“For the most part, people understand it’s just a joke and just having fun. So, I’ll throw the box, or I’ll break the box. It’s a lot better than being simple and clean,” Christiansen said. “People like some drama basically with it. So, it’s just an entertaining form of just shipping videos. It seems really basic, but that basic stuff really seems to capture an audience.”

His business, Milweb1, was established before TikTok, so his career of making banners, yard signs, and decals, isn’t reliant on his video views. 

But many small businesses — even in Milwaukee and around Wisconsin — do. 

That’s why he hopes there isn’t a nationwide ban on the app, which is something that has been proposed by lawmakers on Capitol Hill. 

“I think it would be devastating for new businesses that started with TikTok and make quite a good living off of it,” Christiansen said. “Overall, I think this would hurt the economy if we lost TikTok.”

Christiansen been worried about the potential ban since it was first brought up a few years ago. He’s also been posting on YouTube, which has rolled out a feature called YouTube Shorts to compete with TikTok. 

He’s also had millions of views there, with 158,000 subscribers. 

With other social media companies like Facebook and Instagram developing similar features, he thinks finding ways to regulate content across these platforms is better than just banning one site. 

“I’m afraid that just because we get rid of TikTok, those trends will not stop. They’ll be the same on every other platform,” Christiansen said. “You’re still going to have an issue, but I feel that will go unresolved.”

Christensen has no plans to stop posting content. It’s fun for him, and he makes some extra cash from it. But, if TikTok does go by the wayside across the country, he’s working to build up his following in other places.