Is TikTok the New Instagram?

TikTok Instagram

I’m sure you’ve heard of the TikTok app by now, right? The video platform a little like Vine (RIP) but longer in length and with the ability to pause and continue with a new taking.

TikTok has been taking over my Twitter and Instagram feeds with everyone slowly migrating to the app and creating their own videos. And what a time to gain popularity – at a time when people don’t have much to do in isolation.

The TikTok app reached its 2 billionth download last week, making it the most downloaded app of 2020. Popular, isn’t it? But with the rise of TikTok, do we see the demise of Instagram?


What I’m seeing and reading more and more of, is that video is going to be the future. According to Cisco, by 2021, 82% of the online content we consume will be in video format.

We’ve seen Instagram try to take on YouTube with their IGTV feature, but it doesn’t seem to have taken off too well. Instagram also stole copied introduced a feature that appeared on Snapchat, the Instagram story, which could either be pictures or videos of users’ days that only last for 24 hours.

TikTok is once again showing the popularity of video format, but in smaller chunks. We know that we have a very short attention span, and the more social media that we consume, the shorter that attention span is becoming.


It seems everyone is trying to be TikTok famous or go viral on the app. It also seems quite easy to rack up a lot of views on the app, with people watching these short videos in their thousands.

As with most social media apps, there are those that stand out and perform better than others. Instagram influencers have been migrating to the new app, but their content isn’t suited to the platform and so, don’t perform as well.

This makes room for a new wave of influencers, the TikTok influencers. The BBC have already reported that there is a TikTok house in the UK – filled with young stars of the app, to be able to create content on a daily basis.

As ads are now a normality with most influencers on Instagram, brands have been adapting to pay for ads on the TikTok platform. The app works well for makeup artists, beauty fanatics and fashion bloggers.

The uploaded videos can show a quick makeup look and a lot of different outfit ideas in just 60 seconds, making it easy for a brand to sponsor a TikTok that will only feature their products.


Instagram recently introduced a purchasing function to the social network, where users can tap on a product in an image and immediately purchase it. Not great for my bank balance, but great for the company selling the products.

TikTok is now trying to introduce something similar, allowing users to purchase things that they see appear in the videos that they watch. This will be great for brands as the app takes off, but will consumers and viewers get bored of watching sponsored videos?


Just like Vine was popular for a short period of time, will TikTok only be popular while we are all in isolation and then fizzle out quite quickly when we go back to our somewhat normal lives? How long do you think TikTok will stick around?

TikTok will need to make sure that it stays relevant and that it can maintain the attention of its young audience so that they don’t get bored of the app. I think they will need to keep introducing new features, new improvements and listen to what their users want and recommend.

It does seem that the most engaged audience on the app is kids and young teens, giving them all something to do while confined to their houses. Celebrities are also quite big on the app and have helped influence more people to sign up with JLO, Kylie Jenner and Gordon Ramsey sharing videos quite regularly.


Personally, I don’t see TikTok gaining more popularity than Instagram just yet. Although we are moving towards mainly video content, there are options to add video to Instagram and I think with time, this will take off.

I do see TikTok as a hobby more so than something to make money from, from an infuencer’s point of view. The dance crazes and challenges seem to be most popular.

It is however, proving to be a great platform for makeup artists and beauty gurus, as well as fashion influencers – being able to show off their makeup looks and outfit choices.

Time will tell how big the app becomes, but I could see a decline in the future once we come out of lockdown.


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