Ancaster teen gains TikTok fame with viral Dairy Queen videos
Grade 12 student Morgann Book's cake-making videos an unexpected hit
Grade 12 student Morgann Book wasn't expecting to serve viral videos with her ice cream.
But the Ancaster, Ont., teenager has turned her family's Dairy Queen into a TikTok sensation over the past year, attracting millions of views as she shows the behind-the-scenes process of making frozen treats.
"I never expected this in a million years," said Book, 17, who works part-time at the Ancaster Dairy Queen.
Her TikTok account, "@AncasterDQ," exploded during the COVID-19 pandemic, boasting 1.5 million followers and 47.1 million likes as of December.
Wearing a phone attached to her body, Book films herself making custom ice cream cakes and other treats. She often adds a voiceover, sharing thoughts and stories.
She made her first TikTok during a slow day last January. But her account skyrocketed over the summer when she started making more frequent videos — and she gained 1.2 million followers in four weeks.
"Honestly, I was in shock," said Book, who has worked at her family's franchise for years.
"I never really thought that other people would be interested," she said.
Her dad, Ryan Book, says ice cream cake sales are up 15 to 18 per cent due to his teenager's social media savvy.
Book says she now gets multiple daily requests from customers asking that she make a TikTok video out of their order.
She's started going to work at 5:30 a.m. to make cakes before school, Book said.
It's not something she needs to do. But Book says she loves it.
She's met several people through the TikTok account, some of whom order cakes from as far as Toronto, Oakville, Burlington and Brantford.
"It allows me to connect with the community," said Book. "Especially during COVID right now, because it's so hard to do that."
Some of her more popular videos have featured a Harry Styles cake, or training videos for working at Dairy Queen.
For her parents, it's been a help for their marketing budget.
Ryan Book and his wife opened the Ancaster Dairy Queen last year, and also own a location in Stoney Creek.
He didn't know much about TikTok when their daughter started the account — and, "we were concerned, like any middle aged parents would be."
But now, he thinks it's great.
Customers started asking for photos in the store and referencing the "TikTok girl."
"It's actually been overwhelming with the amount of followers she had," he said.
Dairy Queen's head office, which is based in Burlington, has taken an interest in Book's social media presence too, he said.
Book said she was inspired by a TikTokker who worked at a Cold Stone Creamery in Missouri.
She has posted several training videos, and said she loves to help other young people get work.