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A version of this article first appeared in the Media Minds Newsletter. Subscribe today and get the newsletter delivered to your inbox twice a week.

Social media platforms like Meta and X have been scaling down news on how much they emphasize the news. Policy and algorithm changes have left much of this content out to sea, causing publishers to rethink how they approach their social media marketing.

And regardless of their various reasons for this, it could initially seem like this spells trouble for publishers. But what’s come of this is actually an opportunity to operate on another platform that’s doing quite the opposite by embracing news publishing: TikTok.

The platform is already the top dog when it comes to short-form content, and since it’s so popular, the shift doesn’t necessarily mean the end of a publisher’s reach. Instead, it highlights what’s always been true about the industry: flexibility and innovation reign supreme, and it’s vital for publishers to adapt if they want to succeed or even survive.

Capitalizing on TikTok as a Social Media Platform

Publishers can take advantage of the conscious effort to snatch up what Meta and X are leaving by the wayside. However, if you aren’t familiar with the platform, there are some essential things to consider before you start posting. 

The first is about what people value on TikTok. The most engagement happens with posts that feel creative and authentic. While this could be challenging for publishers dealing with news articles, overcoming this is imperative to get noticed on the app. The average TikTok user isn’t going to respond well to long-winded articles or dry reports. They’d much prefer something fast, snappy, and engaging.

Embracing Change

One of the best things about this shift is that the TikTok base is eager for engaging content. That means that publishers have the unique opportunity to connect with a younger, more tech-savvy base. But because the base is different, it’s imperative that publishers understand how this base consumes content.

Most TikTok users aren’t opposed to interacting with posts about complex topics. However, posts that break down these topics into bite-size pieces tend to do significantly better than those that serve up the news more traditionally. Publishers might need to readjust their angle if they’re operating on TikTok, but the payoff is well worth making the shift. 

Not only that but since other social media platforms simply bury many of the things publishers are actively trying to push; the adjustment is necessary and inevitable if you want to remain relevant on social media platforms.

TikTok’s Stake in the Game

Other platforms might be shying away from being more news-oriented. Still, TikTok essentially does the opposite, courting publishers to engage more with their platform. They’ve acknowledged a truth that many in the publishing world need to do as well: capitalize on change and confidently move forward in a new direction. 

TikTok’s understanding of how other social media companies are acting makes it the ideal platform for publishers who want to focus on news. They know that the hole in the market needs filling, so swapping to more short-form content on TikTok is an even more appealing option.

What This Means for Publishers Going Forward

Ultimately, the primary goal is to engage with your target demographic. If some platforms intentionally make it a hassle to connect with this demographic, it’s time to switch to another platform that doesn’t. 

The ideal scenario is to examine your current content and see how you can adjust it to make it more appropriate and enjoyable for the average TikTok user. 

This doesn’t mean that you have to stop engaging with other platforms, either; it just means that publishers need to be realistic about their reach and how they can leverage certain social media sites to expand their reach as much as possible.

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