Money or Funny? 5 things about TikTok you probably don’t know

Something interesting to read over the weekend.

A 2-billion-download-APP you need to know.


You may have been a fan of TikTok, or you must have heard of it. According to Sensor Tower, TikTok was downloaded 315 million times from January through March and now has 2 billion downloads overall, doubling its total from just 15 months ago.

As a researcher in the Internet world for years, I am sharing with you some interesting things about TikTok that you probably don’t know. 

1. It was almost dying?

In China, where its original company is, about two years ago, TikTok was not looked upon favorably actually. 

In the year of 2018, even though TikTok in China was actually at its peak in its whole development, many experts still said TikTok would probably die, as people were questioning the videos’ qualities, safety, and their impact on teenagers.

In one of the biggest forum Zhihu (a platform like Quora) in China, the answer saying TikTok would die received thousands of “Support”. 

2. It is a new gold mine? 

Many people in Chine are earning money from the ecosystem of Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok. Douyin and TikTok share almost the same functions. 

Thousands of KOLs in Wechat (the most popular instant massaging and social media APP in China) public accounts and Internet forums in China are discussing how to earn money using Douyin, including not only selling products but also recruiting services. 

They find that it is direct and precise to identify who has the demands from the video shown by the bloggers. They form groups and provide training courses on how to make money through Douyin.

3. It is growing older?

While currently, the majority of TikTok users’ are Gen Z , the users for Douyin are mainly aged from 25-40. But the users structure may change though as more and more 30s are joining in TitTok since the pandemic’s lockdown.

When Gen Z still used Douyin in China, the top bloggers in Douyin were mainly dancers and singers. While the user age is growing, videos talking about raising children, cooking, learning business, are becoming popular.

However, according to the latest official data report from Douyin, the 60s are very interested in dancing videos.

4. It has many sisters?

TikTok is only one small part of the Chinese company Bytedance. This company has around 15 APPs, mainly of which are about news sharing, short videos, and reading. 

5. It is becoming a social APP? 

In April, Douyin launched two new functions, one is “Lianxian” (Interaction), for strangers to talk with each other through live videos. The other one is “Shuren” (Friends), for friends’ interaction. 

In fact, it is not the first time for Bytedance, the mother company of TikTok and Douyin, to try its strategy in the social space. In January 2019, Bytedance launched an APP named “Duoshan” providing video conversations, and in May 2019, it provided another APP called “Feiliao” providing instant communication. But both of them didn’t develop well.

Now they are pushing Douyin to step into the social space battle again.

As Douyin provides clues as to how TikTok hopes to grow, maybe we can use TikTok to talk directly with each other soon?


So, that’s it today. I am also planning to write a serial of articles on TikTok marketing.

Have a nice weekend.


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