The Story of TikTok: How an App for Kids Achieved World Domination

How the relatively new social video platform took the world by storm and only grew bigger in the midst of the covid-19 pandemic.

Before TikTok came along, it was hard to imagine the prospects of a new platform coming along and blowing our other socials out of the water in terms of growth, marketing potential and creativity.

It seems like TikTok came at the perfect time when social media users were becoming fatigued of the performative, unrealistic and stale content from other popular platforms such as Instagram, which has ventured into the world of ecommerce with a fiery vengeance after launching new features such as “Instagram Shop”.

The algorithm has been some-what revolutionary in the industry of tech and marketing, it’s ability to make anyone viral simply overnight and tailors content to the users interests unlike anything we’ve seen before. 

The video app that allows users to create clips from 15s – 60s and can reach audiences across the globe, TikTok brings an authenticity that is unparalleled and has aided communities such as LGBT and POC to have a voice, highlighting and beginning a conversation on important social and political issues.

Since it’s increase in popularity we’ve seen Instagram and Youtube adopt features like “reels” that mirror the general concept of TikTok in order to compete.

Where did TikTok come from?

Unlike all other popular social media platforms, TikTok isn’t US-based. In 2016, it started as a Chinese project called Douyin, the direct Chinese translation of the same name. It is owned by tech giant, Bytedance.

The app went from 2.6 million users in October 2017 and 14.3 million in March 2019. As it stands now TikTok has over 800 million active users and over 1.5 billion downloads on App Store and Apple Play.

For an app made for kids to lip sync and do dance challenges, pretty impressive right?

The latest statistics from TikTok

As of December 2020, TikTok has had 6 billion lifetime downloads, a global penetration estimate of 18% global internet users aged 16-64. TikTok’s 2020 revenue is $1 billion and is valued at $50 billion.

TikTok from a marketing perspective

Before deciding whether to utilise TikTok for your marketing strategy, we first must understand who uses the app.

Gen Z (between 6 – 24 years old) are the predominant users of the platform.However, in last year we have seen a dramatic increase in users age which, as mentioned above, now stands at mostly 16 – 64 year old users.

A notable point is that when promoting on TikTok, your campaign is going to be seen by a youthful audience so identifying whether your product or service is going to gain their attention and interest is crucial here.

From a marketing managers perspective, spending the budget to provide the best results efficiently and quickly is imperative to the process and making clients happy is number one priority.

To begin your TikTok marketing strategy, the first thing to be actioned is market research and identifying the need/interest for your product/service on the app. Second, is to build your profile with strong, engaging content with high-quality video content. 

At Shoot Business, we provide what you need to begin your TikTok journey including consultancy, planning, storyboarding, videography, editing, animation and more. Visit our video portfolio page to see examples of our work – shootbusiness.com/video-production-work

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