Did you miss the latest TikTok changes? Wondering which new updates are important to marketers?
In this article, we explore changes from TikTok that matter for marketers.
#1: TikTok Algorithm
To align with the European Union’s Digital Services Act (DSA), TikTok announced that users in the EU will soon have to option to switch off the platform’s recommendation algorithm. Users who opt out of the personalized For You Page and LIVE feed experiences will instead see “videos from both the places where they live and around the world” rather than “content to them based on their personal interests.” The change is expected to roll out by August 28, 2023.
Our Take: The implications for customers and consumers are clear, but the path forward for marketers and clients needs to be clarified. TikTok has said it will show popular content from the region the viewer is in or in their preferred language. While no further specifics are available at this time, the focus on regional content could mean that local businesses will benefit from more increased localized exposure.
#2: TikTok Ad Targeting
Business Insider reports that, in another move to further align with the DSA while serving the needs of its business users, TikTok is developing Privacy Go. This tool will “enable advertisers to match their own CRM info with TikTok’s audience insights, in a privacy-protective way.”
Our Take: Privacy Go hashes user data like Meta does when you upload a customer list to create a custom audience. TikTok will match your list with the users’ data without anyone on TikTok’s side or your side seeing unique identifiable data about the user accounts involved. The result should be better protection for consumers and better TikTok ads targeting for marketers.
#3: TikTok Account Security
On July 17, Tiktok introduced passkeys, using fingerprint or facial id for account login on iOS. The new sign-in option offers users “a faster, easier, and more secure way for people to sign into their TikTok accounts across their devices by using Face or Touch ID.”
Passkeys began rolling out to iOS users in Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America in July and will expand to other regions and operating systems over time.
Our Take: There’s no word on how this will affect those of us who manage client accounts, but TikTok wants businesses to be successful on the platform, so a solution for marketers and business owners should be in the works.
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#4: TikTok Content
Not long ago, TikTok captions were limited to 100 characters. The limit expanded to 2200 characters and now to 4000 characters.
Our Take: As the number of people using TikTok for search has increased, TikTok has improved its search features. This latest move, which allows marketers to create more detailed and optimized captions, could signal that the platform is leaning further into becoming a search engine.
On July 24, 2023, TikTok launched text posts with numerous features: stickers, tags, hashtags, background colors, sound, and the ability to draft and discard posts.
Our Take: Don’t expect TikTok text posts to look like X or Threads. These posts are text-based but look more like text-based Instagram Stories posts. Unlike Threads, however, Tiktok text posts embrace hashtags and the search functionality that come with them.
#5: TikTok Test Features
Here are a couple of other TikTok features testing to watch for:
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- Some TikTok users with less than 1000 followers can now go live.
- TikTok has added a Shop tab to the experience of select users.
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