How do businesses engage with audiences utilising new social media platforms such as TikTok?

Social media continues to change as new emerging platforms draw in mass audiences through the features they offer.

TikTok is an app that allows users to create and distribute video content. The video-sharing platform is described as a “destination for short-form mobile videos. Whose mission is to capture and present the world’s creativity, knowledge, and moments that matter directly from the mobile phone.” 

The app is considered to have filled the video platform void left after Vine was discontinued in 2017. Of the active TikTok users, 40% are aged 10-19 years old and for this reason it is fair to suggest that this social network system is clearly a prime target for businesses seeking the attention of Generation Z.

The term ‘Generation Z’ is often used to describe western youth whose birth years range from the mid-1990s to the early 2000s. Generation Z has been referred to as smartphone natives with many of them not remembering a time when social media did not exist.

Due to constant exposure to digital technology, Generation Z tends to be very tech savvy with studies showing that they are more adept at using ad-blocking technologies to avoid unwanted promotion. This shows that younger audiences are aware that they are being marketed towards and take precautions to avoid this.

As TikTok is still a newly emerging platform it is a relatively clear space when it comes to marketing, having only just started exploring paid advertisement. Because of the entertaining and creative nature of the app, businesses will need to explore different aspects of their brand, avoiding salesy content but instead looking at what elements make them fun, interesting and how they can be incorporated to the creative space in order to market themselves successfully.

Trends in contemporary marketing show that campaigns are moving from static content to more creative media forms such as video content. Differing to static marketing, video marketing content is highly engaging as it caters towards an audience in engaging ways. The increase of audience traffic through YouTube advertising being a prime example of this.

Hosting over 30 million visitors per day makes YouTube a powerful tool, with its viewership continuing to rise, exceeding television. Google has also announced that advertising through YouTube is more effective than TV as audiences are able to visit or subscribe to a brand channel, share brand videos or even watch more videos by brand.

Online video marketing gives audiences the option to share content directly with others as well as instant access to business sites. It is interesting to see how online spaces have altered the relationship between producers and consumers.

In contemporary society, meeting your audience where they are, participating in their spaces and abiding by their rules is core to good marketing. As time progresses it will be interesting to see how new social media sites like TikTok grow and how more and more businesses utilise these emerging platforms in the hopes of captivating Generation Z’s attention.