September 1st, 2021: Come one, come all! It’s time for another Subject to Change.
In today’s edition:
- TikTok adds new Shopify features
- Instagram removes the swipe up feature
- Charli D’Amelio has a show coming to Hulu
TikTok Expands Partnership with Shopify
TikTok has expanded their partnership with Shopify to allow merchants on TikTok to drive customers directly to their online store through organic content.
Why should I care?
This feature is not in-app (yet), meaning that users will be taken to a creator’s Shopify storefront outside of the TikTok platform. This feature makes it even easier for merchants big and small to get creative on TikTok and sell products. New features such as this are the reason that TikTok has been able to stay fresh and relevant.
Longer content ahead
TikTok is also testing 5 minute videos after seeing the success of 3 minute videos (which came after allowing users to upload 60 second clips, an upgrade from the original 15 second clips). Sure, longer videos allow for more creative capabilities, but most importantly they allow for more ad slots. This will not only benefit TikTok, but also businesses looking to do paid advertising on TikTok. Longer clips also position TikTok as a competitor to YouTube and Facebook.
We smell an AR-portunity for Creators
TikTok is also launching their own augmented reality (AR) studio where creators can build their own effects for the platform, much like how users can do this on Snapchat and Facebook. The feature is still in its testing phase but creators must be getting excited to have more opportunities to become the next viral trend.
Last, but not least…
TikTok has announced a partnership with Canva and Vimeo, “two of the world’s leading video software and visual communications platforms”, in hopes to cater to small businesses. TikTok wants to make it easier than ever for small businesses to create organic content and streamline their marketing and advertising plans.
What can’t TikTok do? It’s no wonder TikTok has been as successful as it has — they consistently roll out new features to cater to the wide array of users they have (over 1 billion to be exact).
Instagram has launched many shopping features in the last 18 months, so TikTok is trying to catch-up and appeal to the massive following they have garnered. It’s amazing that in such a short period of time TikTok has been able to catch up to their much older counterparts (A.K.A. Instagram and Youtube). Each TikTok update appeals to different groups on the platform: realtors, small businesses, big brands, viewers. TikTok isn’t slowing down anytime soon – if you’re not marketing on TikTok, what are you waiting for?
Check out our TikTok Influencer Marketing Guide for more information on how to capitalize on the powerhouse that is TikTok.
Instagram Retired the Swipe Up Feature
Instagram has removed the well-known (and loved) swipe up feature.
Say it ain’t so!
Starting August 30th, users will be able to use link stickers on their stories in order to link out to external websites. This feature will still be only available to verified users, or those with at least 10,000 followers, although Instagram is debating rolling this feature out to more users. The removal of swipe ups aims to streamline the story-making process.
How to be found on Instagram
Instagram also keeps telling us more about their algorithm. Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, wrote a blog post explaining how Instagram’s search tool works and connects users to the right content for them. Instagram shows you content based off of the following:
- The text you enter in the search bar
- The accounts you follow and/or interact with the most
- The most popular search results
He goes on to explain how creators can fit into these criteria and be connected to their target audiences. In order to do this, he suggests that creators have a handle, profile name, and description that are fitting and easy for search results to find through keywords and hashtags.
All Merchants can take part in the Shop tab
You read that right. Instagram has expanded their Shop tab offerings to all merchants. Brands with product listings can now promote on the Shop tab as part of Instagram’s eCommerce shift. Merchants can create a product details page for their listings where users can add the item to a wishlist, share with a friend, or purchase the product without ever leaving the app.
Instagram is taking a lesson from TikTok and putting emphasis on their creators. By updating features and pulling back the curtain on their algorithms, they are giving users the keys to success. And allowing them to monetize — what could be better? To many, the removal of the swipe-up features seems unnecessary. Our guess is Instagram has something up their sleeve in the area of monetization and more ecommerce features.We are happy to see TikTok encouraging other platforms to evolve and promise updates to benefit the creator landscape.
The D’Amelios: Coming to a Screen Near You
Charli D’Amelio and her family landed a reality show on Hulu.
TikTok goes mainstream
Unless you live under a rock, you know that Charli D’Amelio holds the #1 stop for top TikToker with a whopping 123.6 million followers. Her sister, Dixie, has nearly half the following Charli does with 54.7 million followers. So what will their show be about? The trials and tribulations of a family that became celebrities virtually overnight (okay fine, in under a year). This show will highlight how the whole family deals with their rise to fame while still staying true to themselves.
This isn’t the first time a TikTok star has been on our screens
Just last week, Addison Rae, the 3rd most followed TikTok star, released a Netflix movie, “He’s All That”. The movie is a remake of the 90’s hit “She’s All That”. The show has risen to #1 on Netflix in multiple countries in the past week.
TikTok creates stars that transcend the confines of TikTok. Charli and Addison are just two of the many examples of creators that have made their way into mainstream culture, a feat that few Instagram Creators have been able to accomplish. TikTok’s algorithm allows for these creators to be found by the people who want to see their content most, a feature that Instagram is playing catch-up on. You can expect to see more and more celebrities that got their start on TikTok.