Snapchat or TikTok – how to reach Generation Z?
Caro Falsett
February 11, 2020

Snapchat or TikTok: Many marketers today face a new challenge: how to reach the generation Z? Facebook offers the ideal basis for reaching Generation X (born 1960-1979) and the baby boomers (born before 1960) online. With Generation Y (1980-1996), things are getting trickier, because a large part of the population is on Instagram. But Generation Z (1996-today) is setting new standards for the difficulty of online marketing. Instead of Facebook and Instagram, this generation has other communication channels. But does the target group use more Snapchat or TikTok?


Brand loyalty as an advertising strategy


Generation Z may not yet belong to the high-income target groups – but this generation will one day also start working, earning money and of course spending it. However, the hope of many marketers that the working people of the respective generation will then log on to Facebook and thus be reached via Facebook Ads (a milieu in which most marketers now feel at least partly comfortable) is considered rather unfounded. So new platforms are needed on which the younger generation can also be reached. Companies such as GUESS and BMW are already focusing on advertising in the young social media and are hoping for the brand loyalty effect. But which social media platforms does Generation Z actually use? And which one is mainly used by the target group: Snapchat or TikTok?


Snapchat – a friends network as marketing platform?


When Snapchat was launched in 2011, teenagers and young adults took possession of the app. Snapchat allows its users to send video and photo-based stories to friends, which can be modified beforehand through various filters and editing options. It is noticeable that the content expires either immediately after viewing or after 24 hours at the latest – which means that explicit, adult content is also sent more often.

Snapchat scores in terms of audience: the app has 186 million daily users and over 3 billion snapshots taken daily, and the app is opened an average of 20 times per user per day. 61 percent of users are female and 75 percent of users are under 35 – a remarkable platform if you have a young target group. And one statistic catches the eye: 38 percent of snapchat users use neither Facebook nor Instagram and therefore cannot be reached via the two major social media platforms.

Of interest to companies is the “Discover” page, on which companies can place advertisements (also in the form of videos and photos). In contrast to the rest of the app, there are also many videos produced in high quality.


TikTok – dance performances for brand loyalty?


TikTok was first launched by the Chinese company ByteDance in 2017 and only had to give in to WhatsApp for the number of app downloads in 2019 – where the short content platform overtook social media giants Facebook and Instagram. TikTok allows its users to record 10 to 60 second videos. But in contrast to other platforms, there is a lot of dancing, singing and sketches published here. Lip-sync videos of well-known songs or film clips are also popular. The big difference to Snapchat: The user does not have to network with other users to get content displayed. After opening the app, the user is redirected directly to the “For You” page, where videos are suggested based on data such as age, region and videos seen so far. By wiping up and down, the user can go directly to the previous or next video. The special thing: The user does not have to actively start the videos, as they are automatically played as a loop. As a result, the average TikTok user stays in the app for 56 minutes every day – a considerable amount of time.

Advertising on TikTok is fed into the normal feed and is only marked by a small “Sponsored” in a corner. Here, too, native content works best: A company can’t go wrong with humorous videos.


Snapchat or TikTok?


Each platform has its own advantages and disadvantages for companies.

While TikTok almost exclusively features Generation Z, Snapchat is also used for a large part of Millennials. So if your company’s target audience is primarily Generation Z, you’ll find TikTok hard to miss. The advantage of TikTok: Even without the user knowing your company, good organic content can generate a high reach because to view your content, the user doesn’t have to network with you, but simply gets the content displayed on their For You page. By building the app, the user can also find the company profile and the content already posted there more quickly. But to be well liked on TikTok, you need an outstanding creative department. Because dull advertising stories rarely go down well. That’s why you’ll be rewarded with loyal users who can quickly make a name for you.

If you’re interested in snapchat marketing, be aware that your content will be displayed primarily on the Discover page. This is because in order to view your content, the user must send a friend request. But Snapchat has one clear advantage: the majority of users are from the Western world, while TikToks Audience is primarily located in Asia – at least for now.


Snapchat or TikTok – the conclusion

In conclusion, the choice between Snapchat and TikTok depends entirely on your target audience and your willingness to experiment. Snapchat is more stable than TikTok due to its longer existence. But the growth giant should not be neglected, because there is still the opportunity for companies with the right content to achieve brand loyalty among the young target group – at least as long as most companies still have their focus on Facebook and Instagram.

Would you like to know more about TikTok and the potential of the Chinese platform? Then click here.

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