What’s in a Name?

If country music group Lady Antebellum believes that skyrocketing popularity is tied to the name changes Douyin aka “Musical.ly” went through before settling on Tik Tok, it may need to think twice about its recent name change to Lady A.

It turns out that a Seattle blues singer has been using that moniker for over 20 years. The irony is that Douyin is still around but on a separate network.

COVID-19 may have helped accelerate TikTok’s popularity with the most downloads of any apps in the first quarter of this year. It reported 317 million downloads compared to 187 million a year earlier and those impressive statistics are of interest to marketers.
Overall, TikTok has been downloaded more than two billion times.

Its users open the app an average of eight times daily and spend an average of 45 minutes during each visit . Most importantly, TikTok’s monthly engagement rate exceeds 70%. The key thing for marketers to know is that more than 63% of its users are between 10 and 29 years of age, a mix of Gen Y and Z, and that females outnumber males two to one.

Tik Tok Marketing

As a marketing vehicle for audiences 10 to 29 years of age, TikTok excels in combining social media, video, and music. When influencers became vogue, including them in productions became instantly successful.

What makes TikTok videos appealing is its brevity of 15 to 60 seconds accompanied with dazzling pictures, music, special effects, emoticons, and/or filters. Lip syncing as well as duet sharing engages audiences and have also become popular features.
While the main TikTok audience is young, there’s still a big difference in interests between those viewers who are 10 as opposed to those 28 years of age. Create the videos with a target audience in mind. Employ catchy titles with # so people can easily remember, tag and refer others.

Set regular publication days and times that favor the target audience. In aiming at the younger Gen Z audience, weekends are generally better during the school year since teens have more free time then.

Trends change often and quickly on TikTok. Have one or more staff keep tabs on these trends and get on that wave, when appropriate. Some don’t last long but have great popularity during their tenure. Also consider partnering with other popular TikTok creators. Doing so can greatly expand a brand’s exposure, visibility, and popularity.

Challenges are also immensely popular and worth considering. Be careful, however, as some can be dangerous. One challenge, called skullbreaker, involved two or more people kicking the feet out from another, causing the person to land on their back. The cereal challenge involved pouring cereal and milk into the mouth of a person laying flat on their back and opening up the possibility of choking or gagging. Be sure to review TikTok’s community guidelines to learn more and avoid the risky challenges. Two of the most popular and safer challenges have been dance challenges and lip sync.

Or, as they say on Broadway, “Break a leg!”

Options to Facebook or TikTok Advertising

Options abound everywhere we look. Football has its option to play. The stock market has its trading options. If the U.S. bans TikTok, brands will seek other options, and the more than one thousand CMOs who recently boycotted Facebook need their options as well.

What are they?

Facebook

If the boycott protesting Facebook’s content policies continues or even escalates to include small and medium-sized businesses, publishers, and perhaps users, Facebook could see an even bigger drop in its revenue, which came in at $17.44 billion for the first quarter of this year. Their monthly active users for the same period were reported at more than 2.6 billion worldwide. For marketers, what are the options?

If 2019 data gathered by eMarketer.com is any indication, the leading candidate to benefit from ads being pulled off Facebook is Google.

The data showed that Google and its 63,000 searches per second track record received nearly $104 billion in digital ad revenues last year compared to Facebook’s $67.37 billion.

Some observers believe the boycott opens an even bigger door for Amazon because of its 200 million global audience. Digital experience platform Bloomreach’s survey of 2,000 consumers revealed that more than half (55%) begin their online search for products on Amazon with another 90% doing price checks there.

TikTok

Marketers who have been advertising on TikTok might consider YouTube. For comparison, here are some TikTok statistics. Of TikTok’s 800 million active monthly users, 26.5 million are from the U.S., 56% are male, and about 50% of the entire audience is under 34 years of age. 41% are between 16 and 24 years of age.

According to statistics gathered by social media management platform, Hootsuite, YouTube has 2 billion monthly users, and 15% of its site traffic comes from the U.S. The firm said 81% of 15-25-year-olds visit YouTube as well as 73% of adult Americans.

A 2019 survey by Pew Research even discovered that YouTube was more widely used than Facebook by adults in the U.S., 73% compared to 69%. A couple of other differences are that it’s easier to use and allows longer content.

Snapchat has also been mentioned as another alternative to Facebook. Its daily active users jumped to 229 million in the first quarter of this year, up from 190 million a year earlier. According to Statista, a global business data platform, 80.4% of Snapchat’s users were between 13 and 34 years of age as of this April. It added that 60% were female.

Another is Twitch, a live video streaming subsidiary of Amazon. With an average concurrent viewership of 1.4 million during the first quarter of this year, the game/esports platform may offer an option for brands catering to younger demographics.

GlobalWebIndex reported that 75% of its users are between the ages of 16 to 34, with 65% male. Similar Web, a web analytics service firm, reported that the U.S. accounts for the biggest Twitch market with 23% of desktop users. Ironically, Twitch was banned in China in September 2018.

What’s Ahead

Lack of trust and slow action led to the advertising boycott of Facebook. Most observers don’t expect the platform to disappear, and some anticipate that a few brands will return. However, in an age where consumers, particularly younger ones, look to brands to have higher values and ethics, many may be very slow to return to Facebook as the platform slowly ponders the changes it will make to hopefully prevent future backlashes.

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