With over 2.6 billion downloads worldwide, TikTok continues to grow as one of the world’s largest social platforms.  Still, some brands are holding out on creating a TikTok channel for their advertising strategy due to the misconception that TikTok is mainly labeled for Gen Z.

TikTok is growing older

While teens have accounted for 25% of TikTok’s audience in the United States, TikTok users are actually older than we think! TikTok is beginning to appeal to older audiences as the popularity of the app has increased. According to Statista, in March of 2021, 22.4% of active users on the platform were individuals aged 20-29, and 21.7% of active users were aged 30-39.

How COVID-19 grew TikTok’s audience

The COVID-19 pandemic changed how people interacted with each other.  Social distancing expanded TikTok’s user base, and allowed all generations to turn to TikTok to cope, pass time, and educate people on how to stay safe.  Nurses and health care professionals turned to TikTok to reach populations with trusted healthcare information surrounding the pandemic. 

Millions of parents also began to join the conversation on TikTok as a result of social isolation.  With significant time on people’s hands while social distancing, multiple generations in families are creating videos for bonding time under isolation. Older generations are hopping on fun trends and even making TikToks with their kids using the hashtag #family.

Content created for ABC Mouse via Social Native

Parents are also able to use TikTok to connect with other parents, and offer tips and tricks for one another.  The popularity of the hashtags #dadsoftiktok, #momsoftiktok, and #momlife has reached billions of views with parents sharing their own parenting hacks and their unfiltered daily life.

What does this mean for brands?

Although Gen Z still dominates TikTok, there is a growing audience crossover in which more Millennials and older generations are joining the platform.  This presents a unique opportunity for brands to reach new audiences in a fun and creative way.  As TikTok’s user base grows older and includes different consumer categories, TikTok will remain a big focus for marketers.  It is important for brands to become an early adopter of the app in order to take advantage of this opportunity.   

Looking into the future

Still hesitant to market on TikTok if your target audience isn’t a huge audience on the platform? Marketers need to look into the future.  Younger audiences that continue to overwhelmingly dominate the platform are eventually going to become your brand’s target audience.  Marketers can use TikTok now to create brand awareness and encourage consideration for younger generations.  When these younger generations age into your target audience, your brand has already built relationships and top of funnel awareness with new consumers.