This week I hit my first million views on a singular TikTok post. The video is two and a half minutes long and speaks about my desire for more music on queer romance and the internal homophobia that I observe in straight men as queer culture becomes more openly ‘tolerated’ but not necessarily ‘accepted’.
My point about the video being over two minutes long is particularly noteworthy. Remember just a few months ago, if you asked social media experts how to harness a million views, they would recommend keeping it ‘short, sweet and engaging’ by posting a video under the 15 second mark. Within the last few months, all of that has (almost) changed and TikTok’s algorithm seems to be prioritising longer form content.
Along these same lines, Insider Intelligence has incited that perhaps TikTok is ‘coming for Netflix’s crown’. According to the publications analyst Debra Aho Williamson, longer form content is closing the gap between Netflix and TikTok. “The type of programming we’re seeing on TikTok, it’s short videos, but they’re getting longer,” she said. “And I think that’s going to continue.”
According to a forecast, Netflix will hit 172.2 million US viewers this year, and they’ll average over an hour a day on the platform.While TikTok isn’t quite there in terms of viewers or time spent, it’s catching up, with 102.4 million users averaging 47 minutes per day with the platform.
But where TikTok has the upper hand over Netflix is in its advertising abilities, which are miles ahead of Netflix who only just launched an ad-supported tier last year and is already encountering challenges.
According to data analyst Jasmine Enberg “there will be a natural impetus among creators to create more content because every piece will potentially be monetizable […] And that’s going to send a wave of quick-hit, low-value content across social media as creators scramble to get more content out […] Big-name creators will probably be less likely to jeopardise many of their high-value partnerships just to gain a few extra dollars from ad revenue”.