Another day, another social media platform launched. TikTok feels like it’s everywhere right now. But with so many social media platforms to choose from, how do we tell which ones are actually worth investing time and money into?
Some marketers see it as a mistake to allow “trendy” social media platforms like TikTok dominate their marketing strategies. But, other marketers believe that not embracing new trends is a path to becoming irrelevant (and missing out on a whole audience of potential new clients).
In our opinion, both perspectives have value. But with TikTok showing no signs of slowing down, should your coaching business be trying to get in on the action?
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What’s the hype with TikTok anyway?
In 2021, TikTok reported that it had amassed more than 1 billion users worldwide – that puts them right up there with the big players of the social media world.
The short-form video hosting service was initially targeted toward kids and teens. They’d share fun clips of dance routines and other entertainment-based videos. But it soon evolved to include a much wider (older!) audience with a bigger variety of content.
Even though TikTok’s success seemed to appear overnight, the app was actually launched in 2016. Like most social media platforms, people only really started to take notice once the app had been monetized and its popularity started being compared to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
For users and marketers alike, TikTok arrived at a time when the world’s appetite for user-generated content didn’t necessarily need a boost; it just needed a change of pace.
Unlike YouTube, the app’s video content requires little time commitment from creators. TikTok has recently altered its maximum video length to 10 minutes, but the most popular content is still the shorter-form videos of around 30 seconds.
For viewers, the more you use the platform, the better it gets at showing you the type of content you like. As many TikTok users know, the app’s targeted and instantly-rewarding content is also what makes it so addictive. So, even though users appreciate the short, snappy videos, it’s still possible to spend several hours a day consuming content.
Isn’t TikTok just another app that’s going to be replaced soon?
We know what you’re thinking. ‘How long before everyone ditches TikTok and moves to the next shiny new video-sharing platform?’ This is an excellent question. But what if we’re focusing too much on the platform, and not enough on the content?
If digital marketers have learned anything during the social media era so far, it’s that platforms get molded by the content people want.
Right now, people want video.
As Instagram (a platform that previously based its entire brand around a love of still images) switches its algorithm to accommodate more video content, the ‘OG’ video giant YouTube attempts to tap into the short-form video market (read about ‘YouTube Shorts’ here). It appears TikTok has ruffled some industry feathers.
Even if TikTok’s popularity gets wiped out by a new alternative, the current level of love for short-form video content isn’t likely to go anywhere.
Marketers have a unique opportunity to use TikTok to investigate the type of videos that their customer base enjoys. Even if TikTok gets replaced tomorrow, if you know what your audience likes you’ll adapt to whatever comes next. (Hint: We think the next big thing will still involve video).
But does my target audience even use TikTok?
TikTok now ranks more highly than Instagram amongst Gen Z in the US, but what if your audience isn’t Gen Z?
Social media content isn’t confined to the platform or demographic it’s originally released for.
Even though TikTok’s popularity still primarily leans towards the ‘younger market,’ it has experienced significant growth amongst other age demographics.
In the first quarter of 2021, 36% of TikTok users were between 35 and 54 years old, compared to 26% in 2020. It’s important to recognize that something your audience might not use today, might be the thing they love most tomorrow.
How much time does online marketing with TikTok take?
We hate to be ambiguous, but the truth is, the amount of time and energy that TikTok takes up depends on how you approach content creation in general.
If you’re the type of business who likes clean, professional, high-quality content, even short TikTok videos will take time. If you’re a little more laid-back about the content you post then short, snappy, informal videos will fit in with your everyday operations.
The trouble with ‘short and snappy’ video content is that it can be difficult to get your point across in just one clip. That’s why the top ‘#TikTokers’ in the world right now are the ones who post consistently and engage with their audience on other platforms.
Even if creating videos doesn’t take much time, we can guarantee that keeping your audience engaged will. That’s why businesses who choose to go down the TikTok route plan their video content in the same way that they do their other social media content.
At surface level, TikTok presents as an ‘unplanned, on the spot’ kind of video creation tool. But integrating it into your current social media calendar will ensure that your posts remain frequent and cohesive.
If there’s an event, launch, or training session coming up for your company, use it. Using events for video content is a great way to show your audience that you’re present on the platform. Plus it gets rid of the pressure of constantly having to “go viral”.
The ability to easily add your own music and sound to TikTok videos, as well as text makes it a great medium for updating your audience. Your TikTok content doesn’t need to be revolutionary. It just needs to tell a story about who your brand is and what they’re currently up to.
Focus on the content, not the medium
Even the most skeptical digital marketers have started to consider that maybe TikTok has somehow made it into the ‘here to stay’ club.
But it doesn’t really matter how long TikTok is here.
What matters is that TikTok’s content ticks the right boxes for a 21st-century audience.
They want to maintain a sense of human connection, but they also want information supplied to them as fast and concisely as possible.
If your business isn’t using TikTok, it won’t necessarily make people think badly of your brand – but what business doesn’t want to be seen as current and keeping up with the latest trends?
TikTok might not be your favorite online platform, but we believe that the popularity of video content isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Embracing this type of content as soon as possible is the only way to get better at it before the next video trend comes along.
If you’re interested in building more video content for your brand then the team at Emtwo is here to help. We’ll help you get ahead of trends and seize any opportunity that your business might have missed out on.
Get in touch with our team today to start improving your presence online!