Does the Future of Advertising Lie with TikTok?

Many social media platforms have seen major highs and lows over the past decade, but it is a recent addition to the roster that is going into 2020 with high expectations. TikTok, which was created in 2017, rose to prominence in 2019 and has garnered around 500 million daily active users—more than both Twitter and Snapchat. So, while social media users have found a new platform to share funny videos on, how have advertisers made the same shift?

Well, they have and they haven’t. TikTok, unlike Twitter or Facebook, targets a very young (on average) audience. So, many of the specialized advertisers and companies that use Twitter or Facebook to target audiences above 24 years old are rendered virtually useless on TikTok. Right now, the main advertisers on TikTok are massive companies like Nike and Disney, so there isn’t really space for small businesses to advertise. Plus, TikTok is not a platform that shows ads as frequently as others, so the limited ad space means that it costs more to advertise. According to ‘The Social Media Examiner,’ for instance, the minimum budget for advertising on TikTok is $500 dollars—a price that may not be affordable to smaller businesses.

It will be interesting to see how TikTok’s success continues in 2020, and it will be equally fascinating to see how the video-sharing platform changes their advertising policies and pricing options as the app and its audience continues to grow. In the midst of TikTok’s rise to prominence, however, its fellow social media apps and websites are still going relatively strong. While TikTok may be one of the names to beat in 2020 for daily active users, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and even Snapchat are still finding opportunities to succeed and grow. With these platforms offering much more affordable and accessible advertising options, TikTok may not be many advertisers’—especially smaller advertisers’— go-to app in 2020. So, going into the new year, there should be no need to panic if you and your company don’t have any ads on TikTok.