We Are Social Asia Tuesday Tune-Up #431
Written by Javern Chua and Marie Ng.
A week of good news for TikTok
As TikTok’s protracted battle with the United States continues to fill the front pages, and with new short-form video apps flooding the market every other week; it is easy to get lost in the narrative that TikTok is in serious trouble. While it would be naive to think all is rosy for TikTok, the truth is that the market incumbent continues to grow strength to strength.
This week, TikTok announced that they have hit 100 million monthly active users in Europe. This news comes less than a month after hitting the same milestone in the United States. For TikTok, this represents an important milestone as they are certainly eyeing other markets to hedge their losses in the wake of their regulatory bans. Recognising this, TikTok launched their ‘Creator Fund for Europe’ in a bid to create TikTok stars, and in turn, attract more users onto the app. Europe may hold the solution to withstand the outcome of a US ban.
Nonetheless, the United States remains an important market for TikTok. As a result, TikTok would have been relieved by the news that President Trump has given his ‘blessing’ for an Oracle-TikTok deal and that a judge in California has placed an injunction blocking the TikTok ban. If TikTok is successful in its negotiations to remain in the United States, it would be difficult to see how TikTok will not continue to see growth and remain the outright market leader in the short-form video space.
For now, it remains a challenging few weeks and months ahead for TikTok as it looks to keep its existence and consolidate its position in the United States amid legal and trade battles between the East and the West.
Triller Ups The Ante By Introducing Popular Influencers
Despite the recent shakeup of TikTok potentially leaving the US market, one contender has stepped up – Triller, a platform that also allows users to post their own content. In the event of Tiktok’s possible full ban, the number of downloads had overtaken the number 1 position in more than 80 countries over the past few weeks.
Although Triller has been positioned as a different type of app than TikTok, they have also recently engaged high-profile influencers such as TikTok stars Josh Richards, Noah Beck, Griffin Johnson and even the crowd-christened TikTok Queen, Charli D’Amelio.
Triller continues its focus on the promotion of posting creative content instead of just status updates, continuing its efforts to market itself as a prominent alternative to its competitors. As the TikTok situation continues to evolve, perhaps Triller could hold their own well should TikTok exit the market.
YouTube Launches Shorts To Rival TikTok
Another challenger approaches the TikTok chaos, with a new feature for users to shoot and upload 15-second videos. YouTube has launched Shorts, which will be released on beta in India, the biggest market until it had been banned three months ago. Shorts will be accessible through the “Create” icon on the YouTube mobile application, where users can edit previously shot videos or create their own using the application. They can also string multiple video clips together to create a unique clip. As it is still in beta stage, YouTube is continuously working on feedback from users
As the TikTok drama continues to unfold, more and more challengers like Shorts, Instagram’s Reels, and even Triller attempt to enter the market. It would be interesting to see which features resonate the best with those who love TikTok.
Disclaimer: Featured image taken from TikTok.