Learn
Learn
Close

They Ask, You Answer

A revolutionary approach to inbound sales, content marketing, and today’s digital consumer.

Learn MoreLearn More

Free Courses in IMPACT+

Dozens of sales, marketing, and content courses inside IMPACT+. Start learning now.

See all coursesSee all courses
Events
Events
Close
IMPACT+ Membership
IMPACT+ Membership
Close
Coaching & Implementation Services
Coaching & Implementation Services
Close

Services Overview

See how you can dramatically increase your inbound leads and sales.

Services Overview

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Fast track your team’s success with IMPACT's most popular service.

Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery

Web Design

Launch a beautiful website that consistently generates leads and revenue.

Web Design

Virtual Sales Training

Equip your sales team with comprehensive training designed to help them close more deals in today's virtual-first world.

Virtual Sales Training

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Train your company to take ownership of HubSpot and get the most out of your investment.

HubSpot Training & Implementation

Case Studies

See dozens of examples of companies succeeding with Digital Sales and Marketing Mastery and They Ask, You Answer.

Case Studies
Become a Coach
Become a Coach
Close

TikTok Has Half a Billion Users, Marketers Take Note

TikTok Has Half a Billion Users, Marketers Take Note Blog Feature

Ramona Sukhraj

Associate Director of Content, Strategized Initiatives That Increased IMPACT’s Website Traffic From ~45K to ~400K

October 2nd, 2019 min read

For marketers looking to win big on social media, the sheer number of platforms can be dizzying.

In fact, Wikipedia's list of "major, active" social media websites has over 100 social websites, with thousands more emerging from the nooks and crannies of the internet each day.  

Even I had a short-lived delusion that I could start a social network looking at the size of the ecosystem. 

So, despite all of the competition, how is it that TikTok is currently the fastest-growing in the US with over 500 million subscribers and counting?


For those not familiar with it, TikTok is a social media app that lets you create, share, and engage with short-form video clips.

While Vine suffered a surprising-yet-slow death, it, along with Musical.ly, emerged looking to cash in on its absence before merging in 2017.

In 2016, the first incarnation of TikTok was launched as a social media app called Douyin. 

Douyin was built in just 200 days, and within its first year, it had already reached 1 billion daily video views — but that was only in China.

ByteDance, the company behind it, needed to go international. To do that, they launched TikTok — a copy of Douyin — for the international market.

The road to 500 million users

On Monday, at Advertising Week in New York, Gary Vaynerchuk sat down with Blake Chandlee – VP of TikTok – to discuss the advertising value of the emerging social media giant.

During the discussion, TikTok's VP gave everyone a little glimpse of TikTok's overall user base commenting, "It's not a billion, but it's not half that either."

Of course, we don't know the specifics of that answer.

TikTok is massively popular overseas. 1 in 7 people in Thailand have downloaded the app, and over 300 million Chinese people were already active users in 2018.

If the "one billion" claim includes Douyin user numbers (which they likely do), then the vast majority of those users are international.

But there's also incredible domestic appeal.

It was TikTok was the #1 most downloaded app in the Google Play store in Nov 2018, and it's continued its trend upwards, now surpassing LinkedIn, Tumblr, and a gaggle of other socials sites that most of us have an app for on our phones.

It's important to note, however, that the bulk of these new users are young.

The TikTok demographic

Over 40% of TikTok users are between 16 and 24.

For marketers, this presents itself as an opportunity and a serious challenge. That's a highly-coveted age group filled with emerging decision-makers and purchase-hungry consumers, but you also have no idea what's happening within the confines of the app itself.

What kind of culture does TikTok have? What kind of content do TikTok users like?

How to win with TikTok

Many marketers seem to ignore TikTok. It has over half a billion users, but the marketing world is still (for the most part) sleeping on it.

Part of that is because it's confusing for some marketers.

Many people's experience with the platform comes from YouTube cringe compilations or Reddit threads, but when you actually spend a day inside its universe— it's an exciting world filled with unique media, strange-but-funny content, and plenty of meme references.

TikTok is unapologetically young, quirky, and unusual.

Sure, there's plenty of content that trickles over into the cringe category, but that doesn't define the platform. TikTok enables users and brands to create tangible human connections and engagement that's organic and fresh.

For many marketers, this format is new and strange. 

They now there's an opportunity, but they're not sure how to create content that appeals to these younger users.

Some brands, however, are catching on to the trend. 

3 brands succeeding on TikTok

1. Chipotle

You shouldn't be surprised. Chipotle has an extremely popular Twitter feed and Instagram account, but you won't see the same content blended across all three channels.

Chipotle's TikTok content blends humor with product features and glimpses of its real-life restaurants and customers:


2. The Washington Post

TikTok isn't just for fast food and "young brands."

Even the Washington Post shows a bit of personality, incorporating a bit of news culture/humor on the platform:

3. San Diego Zoo

Animal videos are always popular online and TikTok is no different.

The famous San Diego Zoo uses this to its advantage sharing charming animal videos like the one below:

Testing the Waters

For savvy marketers willing to create engaging organic content and native video ads, early entry into TikTok culture could lead to fast gains, but don't go in without a plan.

Ensure that TikTok something your audience is actually using and research exactly how. Once you have this understanding, strategically test out content and you may be surprised by the positive results. 

Want to learn more about digital sales and marketing?

Master digital sales and marketing when you join IMPACT+ for FREE. Gain instant access to exclusive courses and keynotes taught by Marcus Sheridan, Brian Halligan, Liz Moorehead, Ann Handley, David Cancel, Carina Duffy, Zach Basner, and more.

Sign up for free
Take a peek

Access hundreds of FREE courses and keynotes

Free Course
Digital Sales & Marketing Framework for Today’s Buyers
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
A New Way to Compete & Win
By: Brian Halligan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
How To Genuinely Feel Confident, Be Likable, And Build Trust On Camera
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Future of Marketing is Conversational​
By: David Cancel
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
HubSpot On a Budget: Getting Started with HubSpot Starter Hubs
By: Courtney Caldwell
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Assignment Selling: Content is Your Greatest Sales Tool
By: Marcus Sheridan
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Big, Bold, Brave New World of Marketing​
By: Ann Handley
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Investing in Incredible Digital Sales and Marketing Results
By: Chris Duprey
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
How To Show Your Content Makes Money With HubSpot Marketing and Sales Hubs
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
The Visual Sale
By: Marcus Sheridan & Tyler Lessard
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Marketing Tech: What’s Now, What’s Near and What’s Not Anytime Soon?​
By: Dharmesh Shah
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Inbound Lead Generation & Conversion Optimization
By: Carina Duffy
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Virtual Keynote
Fundamentals of Videography: You Can Be a Great Videographer Too
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
The Ultimate Customer Service Toolkit for Any Budget
By: Andriti Gulati
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
6 Topics Subject Matter Experts Need to Address
By: Kevin Phillips
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
Fanocracy: The Power of Making Business Personal​
By: David Meerman Scott
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
The Power of Pillar Content
By: Liz Moorehead
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Keynote
SEO for the Future
By: Franco Valentino
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Fundamentals of Social Media Marketing
By: Stephanie Baiocchi
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Deep Dive
A Practical Guide To Video Graphics
By: Colton Trcic
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Session
How To Get Your Community To Know, Like, And Trust You With Video
By: Marki Lemons Rhyal
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Free Course
Video Sales and Marketing Strategy
By: Zach Basner
View Course Preview View Course Preview
Here Are Some Related Articles You May Find Interesting

Want to Contribute Content to impactplus.com? Click Here.

IMPACT+ Sign Up
A FREE online learning community with on-demand courses, hundreds of expert-led sessions, thousands of your peers ready to support you, and much more.
Check it out
Hundreds of courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE
Check it out
Access hundreds of digital sales and marketing courses and recorded keynotes, completely FREE