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Brands are all in on 'attention economy' spends.

Date: 16-12-2019
Subject: Brands are all in on 'attention economy' spends
BENGALURU: TikTok is seeing a wider range of brand verticals advertising on the platform and many of its pilot initiatives are turning into repeat contracts, a senior executive told ET.

As TikTok diversified its content from mainly teenagers lip-syncing videos to educational, cooking, makeup, fitness and DIY videos, the brands advertising have expanded to include telecom, food, automobiles, fintech firms, job portals and health tech firms from mostly ecommerce and fashion brands earlier.

“Behind diversification of content, there is diversification of user base. As various people come on, they start having different kinds of conversations, and then different kinds of brands want to connect with those people,” said Sameer Singh, vice-president, Monetisation (India) at TikTok. “Initially it was entertainment, song, and dance but it has gone beyond that.”

TikTok competes with Facebook and Google for ad dollars in the attention economy. Even though American technology giants continue to monopolise the digital advertising market, ByteDance is managing to convert pilots into sustained brand contracts.

“The proof of the pudding is in sustained love,” said Singh, who joined ByteDance a few months after TikTok started monetising the platform.

“The most important thing we are seeing (on) the platform is repeat participation from brands. There is momentum building up.”

ByteDance’s TikTok has about 200 million users in India, of which 120 million are active on a monthly basis, said the firm. TikTok started monetising the platform in April by placing ads on its video feed. Companies like Pepsi, Snapdeal, Shopclues and Meesho were among its first advertisers.

“TikTok is putting up a challenge. Google and Facebook need to take notice of this. Despite their deep penetration in India, they are still considered urban. TikTok is the media of the hinterlands, not the top big 8 cities in India. All of a sudden big city brands, aspiring for rural India consumers, are sitting up and noting the fact that TikTok is popular,” said brand consultant Harish Bijoor.

Brands advertising on the platform include Oppo, Samsung, Bajaj, Honda, Pizza Hut, Zomato, Amazon, Flipkart, KFC and Khatabook.

TikTok claims that brands are slowly uncovering its potential, as it is “the most popular and engaging” content creation platform for a lot of new internet users in the country. It believes the platform is an opportunity for advertisers to connect with audiences across the country.

“18-25-year-olds are key to what brands are trying to do. This is consumer base that is hardest to reach out to. It is not TV first, it is into multi-tasking and have shorter attention spans. This is where we see a great fit for TikTok, which is mobile-first, easy-to-consume content on, and has short-format videos that are entertaining,” Singh said.

Source: economictimes.indiatimes.com

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