‘More widely used than Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest’: There’s 1.6 million Aussies using TikTok

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Latest figures show more than 1.6 million Australians are now tuning into TikTok videos, making it a must for brands looking to tap into the youth market.

According to the figures from Roy Morgan, more than one-in-five Aussies born after 2006 (Gen Alpha) are on the social media app. Gen Z makes up the largest portion of users and female users more than double the number of males on the platform.

Similar to its predecessors such as Vine and Snapchat, TikTok relies on user-generated short videos. The difference is the high number of viral challenges, dependence on short music clips, and relatively sophisticated editing tools.

According to Roy Morgan, brands are now leaning into targeted marketing on TikTok due to the significant drop in users from the Millennials and Gen X age groups.

“Amongst Gen Alpha, TikTok is more widely used than the well-known Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest,” Michele Levine, chief executive of Roy Morgan, said in a statement.

“Only the ubiquitous YouTube is more widely used.”

Targeted advertising is also pushed by TikTok’s algorithms, such as localised formulas, to circulate nearby TikTok creators and videos to users, and hashtag campaigns.

Similar to Spotify and YouTube’s free services, TikTok allows brands and promoters to create ads that play between videos and playlists, and as more users flock to the platform, brands are getting more creative using its free features.

In August, Japanese-inspired clothing brand Superdry enlisted Australian TikTok influencers Caleb Finn, Rory Eliza and Ricky Chainz to upload videos of their Glen Waverley store opening.

At the time, the three influencers had a combined following of about 8 million fans — and a large majority in Superdry’s key demographic of young Asian-Australians.

Other brands are encouraging followers to use branded hashtags such as Apple’s #shotoniphone, clothing store Guess’ #InMyDenim, and high-end retailer Ralph Lauren’s #WinningRL.

BMW mid-last year combined this tactic with a dance challenge, which is a popular format native to the TikTok app. Despite the differences in their demographics — the dominant age group using TikTok is unlikely to be able to afford new BMWs, or perhaps even drive — this allowed the luxury car brand to invest in a new generation.

“The key to success is to meet the specific requirements of each channel and community by offering challenges, choreographies and music, for example,” BMW’s global head of digital marketing Jörg Poggenpohl said at the time.

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