3 mins

TikTok may well be the biggest new social media platform that you’ve never heard of.

Following the demise of Vine (remember Vine?!), several new apps popped up as a reminder that young people aren’t quite done with short-form video yet. TikTok hit the scene in 2017, merging with an app called musical.ly, to become the next big thing targeting the teenage market.

TikTok secured popularity fast; becoming the most downloaded app worldwide on the App Store in the first quarter of 2018. And as of November 2018, TikTok was ranked the third most popular app in the world counting the download stats of both the App Store and Google Play (source: Business of Apps).

So, yes, it’s kind of a big deal. But don’t panic! Here’s everything you need to know to get up to speed with TikTok.

User Base

Although the demographics of TikTok’s user base spread across the entire age scale, its target audience is predominantly 16-24-year olds.

TikTok’s monthly active users amount to over 500 million – more than double the number of people who used Vine at its peak! By comparison, Instagram had to wait six years after its launch to reach the same figure – so it’s safe to say TikTok has experienced some pretty rapid growth.

In the first quarter of 2018 alone, the app totalled a whopping 45.8 million downloads, surpassing Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram (according to the American research company Sensor Tower).

TikTok’s Top Stats [Infographic]

Style and Approach

TikTok allows its users to create and share 15-second videos, soundtracked by popular music samples. Sounds familiar? It’s not a new concept. Vine briefly cornered the market of short-form video content creation, which inspired TikTok to bring a focus on music and transform the platform into a more interactive and appealing format.

Most of the content on TikTok is made up of users lip-syncing and dancing to popular songs in short, 15-second clips. The app is easy to use and millennial-friendly; the home page is a list of videos that are split into various categories. Users can scroll through clips from others that they are following, while the app also recommends new content tailored to each user in a “For You” tab. Fans can like, comment and share each video and can also view the profile of the user who posted it. A search page, also integrated within the app, allows users to find new content easily and displays trending hashtag challenges.

Why Do People Use TikTok?

TikTok’s mission is to capture and present the world’s creativity, knowledge, and moments that matter in everyday life. It encourages its users to be creators directly from their smartphones and is committed to building a community by pushing its members to share their passion and creative expression through video. The app allows anyone to become a creator – making video production a simple process where the user needs only a smartphone and an idea.

What Next?

So there you have it! You now know what TikTok is about. Still have questions? At Arke, our experts can walk you through everything you need to know about this all-singing, all-dancing, all lip-syncing app and help you decide the best way to include it in your marketing strategy. Let us know how we can help.

Read part two of our TikTok blog series to discover:

  • What you can learn from TikTok about keeping your audience engaged
  • Why your content has a good chance of going viral on TikTok
  • 5 reasons to use TikTok for your marketing

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