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12 December 2022
TikTok comes to newsrooms
Marketing to Gen ZSocial media planning & buyingStrategy
New research explores how publishers around the world are looking at TikTok as a platform to engage a young audience of future news consumers, while attempting to counteract the potential for misinformation on the platform.
Why it matters
From an advertising perspective, credible content makes TikTok a safer place to advertise, while high rates of referrals to news publishers help to shore up media investments with those outlets.
What you need to know
The research comes from Oxford University’s Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. Their Digital News Report delves into the platform’s uses among publishers with the following key insights:
Publishers are getting involved for the same reasons as advertisers: a fast-growing, young audience.
The possibility of countering widespread misinformation is also a key motivation.
There are concerns around free speech, the trivialisation of news, and a lack of referrals to publishers’ own sites if too much content stays on the platform. Verification is also an apparently opaque system, which appears to be a much bigger threat outside the US and Europe.
There are a handful of strategies emerging: either to give TikTok native creators free rein to tell stories on the platform, as publishers such as NPR have done with their ‘Planet Money TikTok guy’, or to preserve the tone of the newsroom by deploying journalists from other media onto TikTok.
Publishers have adopted TikTok unevenly. A majority of publishers in Indonesia (90%), Australia (89%), Spain (86%), France (86%), and the UK (81%) are on TikTok, while 77% of US publishers and 68% of Brazilian publishers reflect significant interest. Meanwhile, few Japanese, Italian, Danish, and Bulgarian publishers have joined the platform.