TikTok is Twice as Popular as Instagram and YouTube for Brands

TikTok’s stunning rise to the top of the social media food chain has upset the delicate balance of the industry, and it has also forced its competitors to try to copy some of its features. Instagram’s answer to TikTok’s short form content was the introduction of Reels, and YouTube launched Shorts not long after. In spite of the fact that this is the case, TikTok continues to be far more popular than its competitors.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that brands used TikTok twice as often as they do Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts. This comes from a study conducted by Social Insider, and it makes it clear that TikTok is still winning this race, although Instagram and YouTube also have unique benefits that make them more useful than might have been the case otherwise.

If you were to take a look at watch rates, Instagram comes out on top. Such a benefit can be useful because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up allowing brands to get more eyes on their content.

However, TikTok wins out in practically every other category. For example, the Chinese social media app took the top spot in terms of engagement, and short videos posted on the platform get twice as many comments as YouTube and Instagram as well with all things having been considered and taken into account.

On TikTok, you can expect to get an engagement rate of about 5.53%. This is considerable higher than the 4.36% engagement rate on Instagram Reels, which in turn is superior to YouTube Shorts offering just 3.8% engagement on average.

A large chunk of TikTok’s success can be attributed to one factor: the virality of its content. Regardless of the size of your channel, TikTok’s unique algorithm makes it so that any type of content can end up going viral practically overnight, and this is launched many influencers to a level of stardom that would’ve been hard to come by had they been operating on any other platform.

However, this does not mean that Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts are without their own merits. As has already been mentioned, Reels provide a watch rate that surpasses even TikTok’s potential. As for YouTube, posting Shorts can be a useful discovery tool. Many Shorts are posted on the homepage, and if a user were to click on this recommendation, this would be factored into the long form content that the algorithm would end up showing to them.

This can be a great way to boost subscribers, which just goes to show that purely looking at metrics can often lead to you losing sight of the big picture. Each of these platforms bring something valuable to the table, and brands and creators alike need to diversify their presence so that they cover YouTube, Instagram as well as TikTok.

One thing that bears mentioning is the value of authenticity. Brands need to humanize their content in order to get the level of engagement that they are after, otherwise users and viewers will fail to respond to it the right way.

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