tiktok vs youtube for business

YouTube and TikTok are today’s biggest video-sharing platforms with user-generated content. With a combined monthly active user base of well over 3 billion people, you can be sure as heck that you can get decent reach and exposure if you play your cards right.

With such massive coverage with either video-sharing platform, picking either would always get you results. It isn’t YouTube vs. TikTok, but a matter of which platform best suits your business.

Which among the two will greatly benefit your business? Does YouTube’s long-form video suit your business’s branding? Or will TikTok’s fast-paced, short-form video style be a better strategy to create traction and attract more potential customers?

This brief but in-depth discussion of TikTok vs. YouTube for business aims to present you with a clearer picture of which video-sharing platform should your brand use for business.

Reasons Why YouTube Is so Popular

Youtube and tiktok

Aside from being first on the scene in the video-sharing platform trade, YouTube stands to have several reasons for its dominance in its field. YouTube was the first platform to let anyone be their producer, director, and talent. As long as you had some video content, YouTube is probably where you want to post it.

Massive does not even begin to describe YouTube’s reach of 2.1 billion monthly active users. This means a fourth of all human beings on Earth watch videos on the platform! If you are looking for your niche or your target audience, you can probably find them on YouTube.

Also, YouTube has everything! YouTube has long been the second-largest search engine in existence. The largest is Google, you can search for anything on YouTube and you are most likely to have results in video format.

YouTube is popular with brands as a promotional tool not just because of its reach, but because of how a YouTube channel can become a separate income stream in itself. Monetization opportunities abound on YouTube from affiliate marketing, ad shares, sponsors, etc.

Why Use TikTok?

youtube vs tiktok

TikTok is known to be the young person’s video-sharing app. TikTok is said to be Gen-Z’s playground. TikTok is smack-filled with short-form videos that keep a younger user base entertained and amused one swipe at a time.

Dance videos, funny videos, and other shenanigans may be the majority of content on TikTok, but it would be improper to underestimate this platform as a tool for promoting your business.

Consider using TikTok as your ideal platform if your brand aims to attract the younger demographic. What is TikTok for business but a way for your brand to connect with Generation Z?

TikTok is also more popular with, but not limited to, the female user base.

TikTok has a firm hold on the younger market, but the app now attracts a wider audience beyond the youth. Some shift is rapidly happening in the video-sharing side of the social media landscape. People who are more mature and older are now spending time on the TikTok platform.

The marketing industry is much aware of this shift, as made evident by the fact that there are currently around 5 million brands and countless other small businesses on TikTok. It is not hard to see the business edge TikTok can give your brand.

TikTok has hit around 1 billion worldwide active users this year. With how much growth TikTok has been having, 1 billion is a fifth of all global internet users.

Being the most downloaded app on both the App Store and Play Store as of 2023, TikTok is simply expected to take over. You can safely bet that your business’s presence on TikTok will get you something.

TikTok vs. YouTube: Similarities

youtube shorts vs tiktok

The biggest similarity between the 2 apps is that both YouTube and TikTok are today’s biggest video-sharing platforms.

Let us flesh out how these two video-sharing social media giants are alike:

  1. They both have billions of active users. Both platforms will get you tremendous reach and exposure with your target audience if you play your cards right.
  2. Both TikTok and YouTube are a platform to upload user-generated video content.
  3. TikTok specializes in short-format videos, while YouTube has recently rolled out YouTube shorts – YouTube’s vertical short-format videos that content creators can now upload.
  4. An age demographic overlap sees both platforms attracting a lot of users from the age range of 15-25, both male and female.
  5. You can find every kind of audience niche on both YouTube and TikTok. A community of viewers on one platform will very likely have a presence on the other.
  6. Both platforms have user feeds. TikTok has the For You page and YouTube has recommended videos that both give users new content to see every time they open these apps.
  7. The two platforms offer advertising options and capabilities for brands who want to advertise through them.
  8. Both TikTok and YouTube are more of an internet resource than social media platforms. In the strictest sense, a social media platform is a place to connect with people. TikTok and YouTube primarily stand as venues for people to find information and entertainment rather than to communicate and socialize with other users.

TikTok vs. YouTube: Differences

what is tiktok for business

YouTube and TikTok, although both video-sharing platforms have a myriad of differences between them. Here are the main differences that could help you decide which of the two is a better fit for your business:

  1. YouTube’s audience is mainly people aged 18-34, while TikTok mainly caters to younger ages 13-21. Adults use YouTube, and kids use TikTok. This is the biggest key difference between them.
  2. Although there are now YouTube shorts, YouTube focuses on long-form videos, while TikTok only has short-form videos, with videos being allowed a maximum run time of 10 minutes.
    YouTube shorts vs. TikTok: these are both in short-form video formats but you could say the similarities end there. The type of content on TikTok is mainly for entertainment only, while YouTube videos focus not just on entertainment but on information and education.   
  3. TikTok has its video editor, while YouTube has only basic editing features and mainly offers content creators a venue for posting their videos.

So, What to Choose?

There will be two main factors to help you choose either go YouTube or TikTok for your business:

Who is your target audience/potential customers

Are you all about attracting the younger demographic, or attracting a more mature audience? Focus on YouTube for the latter and TikTok for the former. In 2023, it is still that simple.

The type of content you want to create

Short-form vs. long-form, entertaining vs. informative; that is TikTok vs. YouTube. If you want a more thorough, in-depth approach, choose YouTube. If you want bite-sized content that is brief and to the point, go for TikTok.

Whatever you choose between using TikTok or YouTube for business, you should choose a video-sharing platform based on one criterion only: suitability. Pick based on which one would help your business increase its reach to its target potential clientele.

It could be that one could be better for your brand than the other. And to know this for certain is to understand each platform thoroughly for yourself. Spend some time on each platform and see what it is like on the ground.

Business participants like yourself are probably more or less familiar with what YouTube is and how it can work for a brand. Imbue yourself with the same familiarity with the TikTok platform, so you could objectively judge which video-sharing platform is right for you.

It may also be the case that your business can find it advantageous to use both YouTube and TikTok. Opening accounts on these platforms are free anyway. And if you plan to advertise, then just go ahead and do so.

Maddie Schultz
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