TikTok has been tinkering with the features a lot lately. For example, a new Friends tab replaces the well-known Discovery tab, you can now see who has viewed your profile (yes really!) and the platform has added a Stories feature. The arrival of the Pulse program gives advertisers the opportunity to tap into the most popular content for the first time. We list the novelties for you and do a educated guess: where is TikTok going?
It’s part of the job, to stay informed as a marketer, social media manager or content creator about fresh features on the popular platforms. TikTok has released no fewer than 3 new features and an advertising program in recent months. As is often the case, this resulted in differing reactions. The Friends tab and Stories have yet to prove themselves on TikTok (it may help TikTok Stories that Instagram seems to be testing with the hide from sharing Stories) but many users were to say the least not amused with the disappearance of the Discovery tag. The company did not provide much explanation about the new releases. The developments seem to indicate an adjustment in the price.
The Friends tab and Stories have yet to prove themselves on TikTok (it may help TikTok Stories that Instagram seems to be testing with the hide from sharing Stories) but many users were to say the least not amused with the disappearance of the Discovery tag. The company did not provide much explanation about the new releases. The developments seem to indicate an adjustment in the price.
1. Stories: top of flop?
Shortly after the news about the launch of Stories came out, several memes started laughing. Because, who is waiting for that? The criticism can be followed, lately platforms such as Instagram and TikTok seem to be mainly in a race to copy successful features from each other instead of innovating.
The comparison with LinkedIn’s failed attempt at Story plans on the platform was also quickly drawn. LinkedIn launched Stories in 2020, but the feature disappeared like snow in the sun after a year. It turned out that the users on this professional platform were not at all interested in tools for creating this kind of informal, temporary content. And also on Twitter, the Story feature was short-lived.
Stories on TikTok is currently available to all users. You’ll find them among the other videos of your For You tab or the people you follow. You can make them yourself by choosing the ‘quick’ option under the red camera button. Take your photo or video. Add your filters and stickers and then select, ‘Post as Story’.
Has a user posted a Story? Then a glowing border will appear around your profile picture, just like with Instagram. Is the Stories feature indeed doomed to fail? Instagram proves that content that is only visible for 24 hours is still popular. Time will tell.
2. Back in your bubble with the Friends tab?
Another notable pick from TikTok, the new Friends tab that is launching the Discovery tab replaces† You may have already seen it in the menu at the bottom left. The Friends tab shows content from your friends or people you connected rather than the hashtags or people you follow. This is also remarkable, because for most people there will certainly be overlap between the two groups.
In any case, the choice for this new feature seems to indicate that TikTok’s current strategy is more focused on presenting personal content to users, rather than the continuous stream of viral or trending videos. So back in your bubble?
The disappearance of the Discovery tab is a bit inconvenient, especially for content creators and companies that generate their reach by hooking up trending hashtags. These have now been moved to the search bar, but a handy overview page is missing. Although you can still encounter them via the For You tab at the top of your screen.
3. Who has visited your profile?
At Facebook and Instagram, the privacy rules have never allowed it. Yet it remains a hidden desire of many users to be able to see who has taken a look at their profile. This is also proven by the dozens of ‘See Who’s Viewed Your Profile’ third-party apps that have been responding to this for years.
On LinkedIn you can (limited) see who has visited you, but the more extensive option is included in the premium package. It is therefore remarkable that TikTok is now introducing this feature and thus optionally throwing the opportunity to sneak a peek at your competition, or perhaps your ex.
The button is only available to users aged 16 years or older and with 5000 followers or less. And here too the following applies: cross the road immediately. So you can only see it if you have turned it on yourself in your settings (go to your profile and then to the eye at the top right).
4. Pulse: advertise alongside top creators
Perhaps the most interesting news for marketers and entrepreneurs: TikTok Pulse† With Pulse, TikTok is the first to present a program that makes it possible for advertisers to ride on the ‘pulse’ of the platform. It offers you the opportunity to advertise with the content of the top 4% most popular content creators and thus generate visibility. Successful content creators get a revenue model in this way, an addition to the existing one Creator’s Fund).
With the arrival of Pulse, an exciting time begins for TikTok. So far, no platform has managed to monetize short form video. Whether TikTok with Pulse will bring in amounts in the magnitude of YouTube is therefore highly questionable, but for all platforms, their income depends on the creators they attract.
And TikTok has the wind behind it. Because which foresighted content creator has not yet made the switch to TikTok? Or, as writer Sophia June puts it on the platform Nylon expresses:
I mean, surely TikTok doesn’t think it it needs to try to copy Instagram, right? It would probably be better if it didn’t. […]it’s an open secret that Instagram will one day become what Facebook is for boomers now: a graveyard of strange photographs and too-earnest social interactions. – Sophia June, Nylon
Source: Frankwatching by www.frankwatching.com.
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