The success story of TikTok

Created in 2016 in China, Tik Tok is the first Asian application to achieve such success in Europe and in the United States. Halfway between social network and play-back, Tik Tok allows you to film yourself by dancing to songs. The application, a real phenomenon among adolescents, is about to be copied by the American giant Facebook.

Some key info:

  • 614 million downloads in 2019
  • 13 million videos published per day
  • 150 million active accounts daily
  • 4 million users in France
  • 57% women and 43% men in France
  • Average time spent: 40 min per day in France
  • 3rd favorite social network for people under 13 behind Snapchat and Instagram
  • 1 of 2 school students use it in France
  • 5 billion videos viewed each month

So, let’s understand how it all began and what represents TikTok in our everyday developing tech world.

Where does this come from?

TikTok’s name is Douyin in China, its country of origin. This is a smartphone application, created in September 2016, and published by the Chinese giant ByteDance, which has made itself known with the very popular platform of personalized news content Toutiao. TikTok is dedicated to creating and sharing short music videos. Users film themselves in front of the camera doing back-up or choreography. Many competitors exist in the field of karaoke, “lip sync” or “play-back” such as Triller, Dubsmash, Funimate.

Among the most popular applications, there was, born in Shanghai in spring 2014. At the end of 2017, thirteen million videos were posted there every day. It has disappeared today after its acquisition by ByteDance in November 2017, for an amount between 800 million and one billion dollars (between 690 and 860 million euros). After this, the company decided to merge the two applications. The transition took place during the summer: was replaced by TikTok.

Thanks to this alliance, the 100 million accounts created on automatically transform into Tik Tok accounts. Even today, the success of the application continues to grow as it has more than 600 million accounts to its credit.

Okay. But what do we do on TikTok?

Once the account is created, the user can choose a song from a vast catalog. The user can then film himself/herself over the camera, pretending to sing. Videos that last fifteen seconds can then be applied a particular speed function to slow down or speed up the movement, but also filters and visual effects. Once shared, the videos appear on the app’s home page and are listed in the creator’s profile as an Instagram account. Users thus collect “likes” and subscribers. Users are also creating some challenge videos that become trends on TikTok.

As on other social networks, users can write a description accompanying the video! They can also choose whether allow comments or not, and to limit the visibility of the video to community, or to the whole world!

And why is it fun?


We can watch many videos of different styles: humorous, dances, tutorials, etc. No need to search YouTube, content from around the world is at your fingertips!


The app allows you to be creative quickly and easily. No need for an advanced computer or the latest fashionable editing software. In seconds, even the most novice can edit their video, add sound, filters and special effects. All this from their smartphone!


This is one of the points that appeals most to TikTok users and especially to middle school students! Each week, challenges in the form of hashtags are highlighted. Users just must pick them up with a thoughtful video. The objective? Be as creative as possible to get the most likes. Sometimes they can even win gifts if the challenge is partnered.


TikTok is a very easy way for the youngest to become as influential as their idols. Everyone can see everyone’s videos and the most liked videos automatically go up in the news feed.

With TikTok growing this rapidly in popularity, it is important to not fall behind. Popular content creators have kept their popularity thanks to the fact that when merging TikTok with, the user content was kept unaltered. Therefore, if influencers or businesses want to keep their place on the market, they should be present on this platform for their target audience.

A propos de Nare SHAHNAZARYAN

Étudiante en Master 2 Commerce Electronique à l’Université de Strasbourg. Attirée par les innovations, les nouvelles technologies et surtout par l'art de Marketing.

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