Though TikTok’s final fate still rests with lawmakers, the social-media app’s effect on the internet is here to stay.
- Many lawmakers are still pushing to ban the ByteDance-owned TikTok due to its connection to the Chinese government, but the app’s video platform is so popular that it has changed social media.
- Instagram and Facebook Reels and YouTube Shorts emulate the short-form video and never-ending content scroll of TikTok, Infillion reports.
- While TikTok may go away, the effect it has had on social media is likely to stay around for some time.
Why it’s news
Marketers and influencers who want to have an influential reach need to tune in to the ways TikTok has reshaped the social-media landscape. The short-form videos have reduced users’ attention spans and given them different expectations for content.
TikTok’s “sticky content” keeps users from leaving the app, something marketers can learn from. Through its algorithm, TikTok constantly suggests new content that keeps users glued to the screen. By judging what videos are interesting to that particular user, TikTok curates content meant just for them.
The quick-cut, attention-getting videos keep users on the app for longer. Catchy music and clever edits make the videos that much more appealing.
Beyond clever videos, brands should recognize that creator-led content draws in users. Users are less likely to be intrigued by the impersonal, sterile brand advertisements. Content creators make the product feel real. These influencers have fostered a relationship with their audience, making customers more likely to trust the influencer’s opinion of a product.
As companies move forward in social media branding, the trend of partnering with content creators is likely to stay—it is modern-day word-of-mouth advertising.
Big brands are not exempt from this form of advertising. Rather than buying a Super Bowl ad slot, State Farm partnered with TikTok star Khaby Lane for a pregame ad campaign. This advertising method works well for brands who want to tap into a younger demographic.
Sometimes, these content creators can provide surprising bonuses. Chips Ahoy owner Mondelēz partnered with Vandy the Pink to create an exclusive hoodie to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Chips Ahoy!, Infillion reports. The influencer’s Gen Z audience flocked to the hoodie and now wears a walking advertisement for the cookie.
However, brands must use caution in their social media campaigns. With younger audiences, authenticity matters above all else. Filters that alter facial features may be appealing for a polished and professional look to content, but the videos that have some of the greatest success are the ones that show simple, unfiltered daily activities.
Thousands of TikTokers have success with videos that show “day in the life” routines or provide cleaning tips. Brands that can tap into this authentic, unfiltered experience can reach a whole new audience.
No matter what happens to TikTok, marketing experts should understand that video platforms are the new social media. The text-centric days of social media are gone. Videos are beginning to replace short-from communication, and many media outlets that still rely on print are producing more video content that is more likely to entice viewers, Infillion reports.
TikTok, whether it stays in the U.S. or not, has changed the social-media space and altered the marketing world. Companies and brands must embrace the changes it has brought to remain relevant in the digital world.