Although TikTok has been available for download worldwide since 2018, it was only in 2020 when its users have tremendously increased. TikTok’s authentic and unique design matched with the app’s innovative approach towards generating new trends, content filmed mostly with phone cameras, less focus on the aesthetics and more on the real-life situations – these are the premises of the app’s worldwide success.
While the sceptics believe that the end of the pandemic will end the growing popularity of TikTok, others consider that TikTok is the future itself. Therefore, it does not matter whether you aim to become a TikTok influencer, use this platform for activism and advertising, or kill some free time and amuse yourself. You need to know how TikTok works and what are the major predictions for 2021.
What is the “For You” page and how does TikTok algorithm work?
Perhaps what makes TikTok so unique is its “For You” page. Technically speaking, it is very similar to Instagram, and Facebook news feeds with one significant difference. The TikTok algorithm generates the content based not only on individual user’s preferences, interests, follows or searches but allows them to discover new information and explore different points of view.
Besides, all creators have equal chances, and the platform is not focused more on already popular accounts. Consequently, going viral on TikTok is much easier than on any other social network. Undoubtedly, you need to be creative, authentic and consistent to start your journey on TikTok. However, growing your presence via tiktokstorm can also be among your best options. It can help you make your content visible to millions of users worldwide by appearing the videos on “For You” page.
Focus on content over aesthetics
Platforms like Instagram, Pinterest or Snapchat are more concerned about the strong visual and authentic aesthetics than the content itself. TikTok here is a game-changer. Most of the videos are filmed by phone cameras with low lighting or messy backgrounds. Therefore, this platform has communicational advantages over its competitors by making imperfections acceptable and putting real-life situations at the centre of attention.
TikTok influencers – real youth culture
TikTok has soon become a platform, where entertainment, business, news and social interaction collide successfully. On the other hand, it is mostly used by Generation Z and Millenials, making it the most youth-dominated platform. Therefore, without any surprise, the most famous and rich TikTok influencers like sisters Dixie and Charlie D’amelio or Josh Richards are in their late teenage years or early 20s.
The importance of user-generated content (UGC)
If you plan to open an account for your brand on TikTok, do not underestimate the importance of user-generated content. It is predicted that in 2021 UGC will be one of the significant trends for promoting products via TikTok. Just like other social networks, reposting UGC on TikTok can bring several benefits.
It is a sign that you are responsive, attentive and grateful to your followers, nothing to say about the fact that customers find UGC five times more trustworthy than the brand-sponsored posts. Besides, it is an excellent way to communicate with your followers and identify your brand’s further needs and expectations. However, bear in mind that you need the original creator’s permission before you repost their content.
Progressive advertising policy and sponsorship culture
Although TikTok is new to advertising, it is still highly competitive in terms of low advertising costs and many reach and impressions. Besides, if you aim to target the Gen Z audience, TikTok will be the best fit for your company. On the other hand, unlike Facebook or Twitter, TikTok has a very harsh political advertising position. Furthermore, the platform even banned political ads at the end of 2019.
Although some politicians like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are presented on the forum, they are not active regularly. Besides the progressive advertising policy, TikTok is unique in offering a financial alternative to sponsorships. It means that the creators are reimbursed based on the number of views from the Creators fund. This multi-billion dollar program encourages creative freedom while removing creator dependency over sponsors.
Such reputable and globally accessible magazines as the Harvard Political Review and The New York Times refer to TikTok as “an authentic, communal and adaptive form of social media”. TikTok is the first entertaining app, designed specifically for smartphone users. Alongside a variety of unique features, a platform is also a growing place for political activism and education. So, TikTok 60-second limit videos can do it all – amuse its users and spread positive social impact simultaneously.
The future is TikTok.