TikTok Takes Charge: The Rise of Short-Form Video

Short-form video continues to gain popularity, providing big opportunities for brands. TikTok’s fun effects like music, stickers and animation have users hooked, eclipsing apps that once reigned supreme in video content. Short-form video is here to stay, and brands should consider how it might fit in their marketing strategy to drive results.

So what is short-form video?

Ranging in length from just seconds to 2 and a half minutes, short-form video is a short and sweet way to create and share content. Brands and individuals alike can use this fun and creative environment to push boundaries and share catchy videos that resonate with users. Platforms like TikTok give marketers the opportunity to harness the power of short-form video to establish connections and steadily grow an audience.

How much has it grown?

A 2021 report by App Annie found that, among Android users in the U.S., people are now spending 24.5 hours a month on TikTok compared to just 16 hours a month in December of 2019. That is a 50% increase! Android users in the U.S. are now spending 22 hours a month on Youtube, meaning TikTok has surpassed YouTube in time spent in the app.

Looking outside of the U.S., we find that growth is even more significant in the U.K. where Android users are spending 80% more time on TikTok than in December 2019. In Korea and Japan, however, YouTube still holds a strong lead with users spending 2.5 times the time spent in TikTok. However, TikTok is still growing rapidly as time spent in the app has doubled.

Why is it growing so rapidly? 

Short-form video was already on the rise back in 2019 when we wrote about video in marketing, but the COVID-19 pandemic nudged short-form video into rapid growth. Our social habits changed because we were forced to spend more time at home, causing many of us to seek entertainment and distraction even more than before.

Short-form video also caters to our ever-shrinking attention spans with a combination of visual and auditory stimulation that come in bite-sized clips.

What does the future look like for short-form video?

Although changes in habits due to the pandemic may have helped propel TikTok to great heights, short-form video is here to stay. Short-from video lets users learn, create, engage, and be entertained, and popularity can only be expected to grow. Brands seeking to resonate with diverse audiences, especially younger ones, should recognize the opportunity provided by short-form video and use it to create captivating and authentic content. After all, there is no better place to engage with an audience than a place where they already spend more than a full day per month on average.

And one last note: Keep an eye (or ear) out for short-form audio, as it may be the next big trend in social networking. App Annie also reported that social audio saw a burst of engagement in the first half of 2021as Clubhouse, an invitation-only social media app that hosts live discussions, with opportunities to participate through speaking and listening, gained major popularity. A number of startups have begun to explore short-form, user-generated audio –  likely taking notice of the success of short-form video and wanting to repeat it with sound only.

Hope this post gave you the feels!