The recent ban on TikTok by India and the looming ban on it by the United States is one of the prime examples of how companies pay the price for a political row. The tension between China, the USA, and India with conflicting levels are providing confusing signals to people around the world. The end-users and digital marketers using the popular platform are the ones who are most worried.
The Huawei saga is still fresh in the minds of the people as the restrictions are still on. But in positive mobile app development, the company took over Samsung as the number smartphone manufacturer in the world, during the second quarter this year. This can be blamed partly on the Covid-19 epidemic, but this is also seen as another row between China and the USA as Huawei was barred from using Google Play in its latest phones.
TikTok and the Global Digital Marketing Scenario
TikTok is one of the most popular apps in the world. A few years ago, musical.ly was launched, and that was before its acquisition by ByteDance. It was a popular app but rose astronomically in the following years after becoming a part of TikTok, which was an already established platform by ByteDance. Nowadays, it is the most popular app for lip sync and short videos, along with other purposes. Teenagers and young adults especially like this app very much, and that’s why companies around the world think seriously about launching online campaigns on this platform.
The company officially launched Tiktok for business on June 25, 2020, and that has made things easier for anyone looking to use this platform. Companies looking for exposure for their products need to look for influencer marketing because this is the easiest way to make a product popular on this platform. But, after all the political uncertainty that we are witnessing off late, businesses around the world are looking to take their time in assessing the situation.
TikTok for Business: The Future?
Virtually all the options that were launched in TikTok for business were already available, but now they all are available under the same umbrella. The option to introduce new products by using Hashtag Challenges as new products arrive offers users more flexibility and ease of use.
TikTok is in the news nowadays for all the wrong reasons, with its future already bleak in India and looking somewhat fishy in the USA. The recent order given by President Trump that TikTok must decide by September 15 to sell its US operations to a US company is another serious aspect of this concern. Certainly, the businesses that have invested millions of dollars in this app through marketing will feel dejected and worried at the same time.
Use of Influencer Marketing
Check out the following stats, and you will know why companies have invested heavily in TikTok. Stats published in Business Insider revealed that 2% of US teens in the 13-17 age bracket used TikTok as the preferred social media platform. The growth was due to accelerating anyway, but the Covid-19 epidemic gave it the boost so that its user base started to increase manifold.
The use of influencer marketing on TikTok and how it works is pretty simple. Just like other video sharing websites like YouTube, it relies on how many users share the videos. The role of an influencer in this concern is of paramount importance as it all depends upon an influencer making and sharing videos to his followers. Another step is live streaming videos, which can skyrocket a product’s popularity.
Generation Z is the primary user who uses TikTok to make videos and follow influencers religiously. This devoted fan base is the biggest support and the lifeline for influencer marketing. A stat from Hubspot here offers a clue as over 68% of Generation Z watch someone else’s video and basically do nothing else. They do not indulge in making videos of their own but like to watch, and that’s why influencers can have a big say in making videos that work.
A Complete Ban on TikTok
As I write these lines, it is still not clear whether TikTok will be banned across the globe. The move seems highly unlikely, but after India, if the US and the European Union will ban it, the future of TikTok will be in jeopardy. But it is really a doomsday for digital marketers looking to market a product in a big city like Dubai or any other in the region. Some companies look to use seo services in Dubai rather than a complete package from an agency offering digital marketing or make use of apps like TikTok.
Similar Apps like Dubsmash and others will also feel the heat in case of a worldwide ban or ban from the majority of the companies. Dubsmash has the advantage of being a company based in New York City, although the company was founded in Germany in 2014. So, Dubsmash is out of danger for now, until they indulge in some outrageous act. But the future of TikTok is definitely in peril as of now.
The relations between the US and China are the biggest reason why TikTok is all at sea. The management of TikTok, Byte Dance, looks optimistic for now, but the Beijing based company is facing the music and paying the price just for being a Chinese company.
Conclusion: The Impact on Similar Apps
The big move came last week when Josh Richards, Griffin Johnson, and Noah Beck, all big TikTok stars, left the platform for Triller, a similar app launched in 2015. So, in essence, it will be a boon for all the rivals of TikTok as it is way ahead of its competition. Even Dubsmash, which is a popular name in the US and other countries, is a distant second. But it’s not a scenario that TikTok will be finished forever. It will eventually bounce back, and the scenario can change very quickly in this regard.
The future of Triller is looking bright as a recent report from CNN has shared a stat that Triller was downloaded twenty times more last week as compared to the same week from last year. As a result, Triller is number one on Apple’s App Store with another app, Byte, in second place, ahead of TikTok.
Over to you
What do you think will happen to TikTok in the near or distant future? Please share any feedback for this blog or any questions you have in mind by using the comments section below.