Tik Tok - Time's Running Out to Set Your Audio Strategy

Tik Tok. Gen Z loves it, brands love it, and old blokes and Donald Trump fear it.

You know who’s the most excited about this (relatively) new platform though? Audio Branders. 

It’s not a new idea. Riding the coattails of the success of Instagram, Tik Tok is a social media platform championing short-form videos, mostly used for lip syncing, dancing and producing snappy comedy content. 

I was around for the early days, good days and final days of Vine, as me and my friends gleefully made stop motion videos focused around making basketball trick shots (I peaked at a mighty 27 likes!).

Tik Tok has continued where Vine couldn’t, now growing to challenge the Social Media superpowers. 

To put the meteoric rise in context, the app’s 2 billion downloads through the Google Play and App store has resulted in over 800 million active users, just a short leap away from Instagram’s 1082 million. And that’s in just over a year. 

It is reaching a slightly new demographic too – with 41% of users aged between 16 and 24. 

So why are we, as audio branders, so excited about this platform? 

Well, the app’s sole purpose of video content allows for audio to be half, or more, of the message – and also allows brands to naturally place themselves in engaging content with branded audio assets. 

This has resulted in innovative campaigns, with startling results. 

A recent video, uploaded by @doggface208, showed the user skateboarding to work with a bottle of Ocean Spray juice soundtracked by Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams’. Currently, it sits on over 11.1 million likes. 

The video’s virality propelled the classic song to number one in the iTunes singles charts, and caused the Fleetwood Mac greatest hits album to peak at second in the album charts – and whilst Ocean Spray haven’t released this quarter’s figures, the brand exposure alone is enough to predict a sharp spike in sales, particularly among the youthful audience that inhabits Tik Tok. 

This comes hot off the tails of Lil Nas X’s success in holding the record for the longest reigning Billboard Hot 100 number one in history following Tik Tok virality last year – which caused some, correctly in my opinion, to label Tik Tok as the world’s first audio-led social media platform. 

So how could this get more exciting for us? I hear you ask.

Again following in Instagram’s footsteps, the app has partnered with Shopify to break into ecommerce – allowing users to purchase directly from merchants through the platform. 

This is without doubt the closest branded audio can get to the point of purchase, now forcing brands to think critically about the music that they’re using in their content and adverts – if they weren’t already, of course (around 90% of brands aren’t, though!).

Audio, then, has taken another leap forward. What’s your audio strategy then? 

Come talk to me if your brand’s silent. We’ll get it singing (or at least lip-syncing) in no time.