Viral app TikTok might look like a Blue Ocean opportunity for your brand, but watch out for sharks

A wave crests before hitting the shore, its roar stilled in the camera’s frame, violence captured in a moment of anticipation
A wave crests before hitting the shore, its roar stilled in the camera’s frame, violence captured in a moment of anticipation
Photo by Sean Manning from Pexels

First: user age.

The DouYin and TikTok app logo which is a stylized lowercase letter D made to look like a musical note
The DouYin and TikTok app logo which is a stylized lowercase letter D made to look like a musical note
The TikTok and DouYin logo, which makes more sense when you realize the musical note is also a lowercase “D” for “DouYin.”

Second: China.

A looming shark grimaces at the camera as another swims behind it in the distance, masked by shadow.
A looming shark grimaces at the camera as another swims behind it in the distance, masked by shadow.
Photo by Sean Manning from Pexels

Third: TikTok doesn’t understand bullies.

A shark swims in the deep, a few bubbles floating up to the surface the only disturbance in the water.
A shark swims in the deep, a few bubbles floating up to the surface the only disturbance in the water.
Photo by Vova Krasilnikov from Pexels

To protect vulnerable people from bullying, TikTok’s moderators flagged user accounts prior to complaints of bullying.

Moderators were asked to preemptively and visually judge if users were at risk of bullying: if the person was fat, gay, or admitted to a mental illness, TikTok then shadowbanned their account.

Four: you’ll need to understand bullying, too.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Public Domain Pictures from Pexels

Hatred, bullying, and threats of self-harm are all plausible within TikTok comments, and a brand’s social media team should have written policy responses to each of these events.

The ocean is huge and shark attacks are rare.

Written by

Freelance marketer by day, inveterate doodler in all the spaces in between. Current project: A Dog Named Karma. To say hello: mynamenospaces at gee mail Thanks!

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