TikTok Is Disrupting the Social Media World

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What Does This Mean for Marketers and Brands?

  Instagram accounts for more than 69% of influencer related activities, but in the influencer marketing landscape, TikTok is coming in fast. Isn’t it just a platform for kids? That’s what some said about Instagram, but kids grow, and the reach of TikTok is growing with them. TikTok has quickly become one of the top ten most used social media apps in the world. With its high engagement, organic reach, and lower ads saturation, as well as its creator friendly algorithm, TikTok users are multiplying daily. Source: Hootsuite/We Are Social With over 800 million active monthly users in February 2020 alone, TikTok’s users have gone up 60 percent in the last year, up from 500 million in 2019. And, according to the New York Times, since March 2020 — the start of the COVID-19 Stay-At-Home orders — TikTok usage has increased by 15.4%.  

What is TikToK?

TikTok is a short video sharing platform and social network. It has gained enormous popularity that cannot be ignored. As far as short video platforms, TikTok has been among the top downloaded during the past 2 years. While other networks are increasing their ad costs, and getting flooded with promotions, TikTok offers something different. Its influencers are inexpensive; its organic reach is high, and its competitors are limited. Created by a company based in Beijing, China, the TikTok app launched in September 2016. It was downloaded 738 million times in 2019, and as of May 1, 2020 that number has just passed 2 billion.  

Who uses TikTok?

The largest generation in world history: Gen Z. TikTok users are generally younger. They grew up with the internet and technology in their hands, and as a result, their attention span is low. Moved beyond just ads, Gen Z-ers identify more with influencers. Since this generation encompasses teenagers and young professionals about to graduate, if Millennials are your target audience, it might be worth looking at Gen Z as a potential audience to move your brand forward. Generation Z-ers take control of their lives. They question the “old way” of doing things, like little Greta Thurnberg, and they disrupt the status quo. They’re already a large group of active consumers, and their buying power will only increase as they come into the workforce.
  • 60% of users on TikTok are Gen Z-ers.
  • TikTok has about 800 million monthly active users.
  • Users spend an average of 52 minutes per day on the platform.
  • Currently, in 2020, 16 to 24 year olds encompass 41% of current consumers.
  • 55% of them use smartphones for at least 5 hours a day.
  • 71% watch more than 3 hours of online videos every day.
  • The average attention span of Gen Z is only 8 seconds.
Advertisers are spending $20,000 to $200,000 to reach Gen Z via brand takeovers and hashtag challenges. Brand takeover ads cost between $50,000 to $100,000 (Influencer Marketing Hub, 2020). Hashtag challenges cost brands $150,000 for 6 days (Influencer Marketing Hub 2020). Consumers have spent over $50 million on TikTok, and 42 percent of those purchases were from the United States, yet TikTok users in the United States comprise less than one-third of the platform’s global users.  

What does that mean for influencer marketing?

Influencers become a primary marketing option to promote their brand, when they cannot buy ads. Digital marketing moves fast, especially with new social media driving the bus. As TikTok is growing, influencer-friendly brands with limited ad buying power can benefit from the disadvantages that users experience on other platforms and maximize their branding on TikTok. With more well-known celebrities joining the TikTok platform, like The Rock, TikTok content is highly relatable. It can have a massive reach with impressive engagement. Gen Z requires a different and quicker stream of content than previous generations. With TikTok, it’s possible to reach millions of views in just a few days. Chipotle launched a #SponsorMe campaign for Cinco de Mayo specifically on TikTok. You’re not The Rock, and you don’t have a huge follower base? No problem, if your target audience is Gen Z, then TikTok influencers are here to grow your reach with their ability to create viral content. Create your branded TikTok channel and get started. Do you have questions about running a campaign on TikTok or another digital marketing channel? Let’s talk. Spiral Marketing can help you navigate publishing authentic brand content on TikTok. This might be the best time for your brand to build new, up and coming relationships cheaply with TikTok influencers as the platform continues to mature. Be an early adopter and use the benefits of TikTok before your competition does.

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