Real Deal Behind TikTok: The Facts You Need to Know

In recent weeks we’ve seen discussion surrounding TikTok grow in seriousness.

Real Deal Behind TikTok: The Facts You Need to Know

We have seen the debate surrounding TikTok grow in seriousness in recent weeks. Since its release in September 2017, it has been called a key rival to Snapchat, but it wasn't until recently that analysts really started to see TikTok fighting for Snapchat's ad revenue.

That's felt among marketers as well. It only takes a second to search Google Trends to see that marketers are beginning to believe they need a true strategy for TikTok. What further validates TikTok 's place among the apps we take seriously is the length of time the app was with us now. In reality, few outlets make it past the two-year mark – enough time has now passed for us to see the social proof we need.

To be honest, if you're considering giving a real chance to TikTok, you 're late on the table. There are still many of the platform's early adopters, and also several success stories. Brands like Chipotle, Sony Pictures, Too Faced have already benefited from the platform, whether directly or through influencer marketing. Check tiktok earning here.

Although for the veteran marketers the Chipotle #GuacDance Campaign may seem completely out of this world, it received 532,388,592 views on TikTok.

TikTok Is Currently the Most Downloaded App

The popularity of the TikTok app has been growing at an unbelievable rate since its launch. It was the most-downloaded picture and video app in the Apple store worldwide in October 2018. TikTok is expected to continue to have a strong presence in 2020, as it has formally emerged as a sensation of social media, hitting one billion downloads in 2019.

But it's vital for marketers, who are really chasing the right audiences, to consider where the app is growing. Indeed, 44 per cent of the overall downloads of the app happened in India. If we compare it to the previous year, the overall user base of TikTok has grown by 6 per cent, according to Sensor Tower.

Where Does TikTok Really Fall When We Compare It to Other Platforms?

TikTok is still around 3 percent of total social media users over the age of 18, according to the Pew Research Center's most recent survey conducted in July. Snapchat comprises 23 per cent of the same age group. Whilst TikTok is growing rapidly, there is still a clear gap to close.

The baseline assumption in the media, however, is that it's the under 18-year-olds for whom both platforms compete. It's not easy to find accurate and TikTok-verified demographic data on the platform. Research of App Ape Lab 2018, a company offering data and analysis on mobile applications, found that 21.3 percent of TikTok's male users are under 20 years of age, and 18.6 percent of its female users are under 20.

The baseline assumption in the media, however, is that it's the under 18-year-olds for whom both platforms compete. It's not easy to find accurate and TikTok-verified demographic data on the platform. Research of App Ape Lab 2018, a company offering data and analysis on mobile applications, found that 21.3 percent of TikTok's male users are under 20 years of age, and 18.6 percent of its female users are under 20.

TikTok Is Still Finding Its Unique Place in the Market

In the last year the platform has undergone a number of important updates. The most critical possibility for marketers is perhaps the ability to run ads on the service, opening up a set of completely new opportunities for paid social media.

The app is also set to connect brands to TikTok content creators through the TikTok Creator Marketplace, which was launched recently. This should also encourage companies that are not always sure what to do with new social media apps to turn to influencers, who have already learned the ropes.

The app recently banned all publicity in politics. In a tweet, Blake Chandlee, TikTok 's Global Business Solutions VP, who actually left Facebook for TikTok, said the " reality of paid political advertising isn't something we think suits the experience of the TikTok audience." This might further differentiate TikTok from other platforms – a path Twitter has now taken too.

TikTok 's goal is to be a "strong, refreshing place," its declaration of goal reads: "TikTok is leading mobile short form video destination. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. "But is it just as different from the mission statement made by Snap Inc that if we put aside Snap 's focus on camera technology, has a similar promise?

So Are TikTok and Snapchat Simply Too Similar?

It can coexist with many social media apps. LinkedIn, Facebook , Instagram , Youtube and Pinterest all have distinct differences between the intent of the users. Are Snapchat and TikTok simply too similar?

Debra Aho Williamson, the eMarketer 's lead analyst, shared her view with CNBC that Snapchat should feel increasing competition as both apps compete for the time and attention of users.

She added that "Both apps feature user-generated, short, vertical videos. Although teens use the apps in various ways, the allure of watching and creating TikTok videos in this demographic group is currently very strong.

Although Snapchat and TikTok may have differences in their features their user bases are quite similar. Where consumers want to spend their time dictating when advertisers start making budget investments.

The platform reported during Snap's Q3 earnings call that its users were opening the app 30 times daily. While we don't know how often TikTok users open theirs, Business of Apps reported that the Chinese counterpart Douyin users opened the app four to five times a day, using it every time for half an hour.

"Snap Inc. is a company that operates camera. We think reinventing the camera represents our greatest opportunity to improve people's way of living and communicating. By empowering people to express themselves, live in the moment, learn about the world and have fun together we contribute to human progress.

It's been a long time since we've seen anything as exciting and promising as the entry of TikTok into the market. The two apps that have received somewhat comparable hype in the past few years have been Vero and Ello, both networks that promised ad-free experience but have not attracted marketers' attention. That crucial wall has now passed through TikTok. It has growing opportunities to monetize the website, and also has a increasing user base.

TikTok has a lot of catch-up to do if we look at the numbers, but we also see signals from TikTok users and marketers alike that they are now ready to pay serious attention to the platform.

Thank You.

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Rashmi Malhotra
Rashmi Malhotra
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Rashmi Malhotra

I can define myself as a Design Thinker with a diversified portfolio of portals which includes Ecommerce, Company Research,Job/Career, Recruitment, Real Estate, Education, Matrimony, Shopping, Travel, Email, Telecom, Finance and lots more.

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