When looking at the overall picture, social media is a fairly new method of connecting and networking with others. But even in the short amount of time it has been on the scene, we’ve witnessed multiple social media platforms arrive, generate buzz, and eventually lose relevancy. We saw this happen with the rise and fall in popularity with platforms like MySpace and Vine. Yet we have grown to yearn for a constant influx of content to stimulate our brains. This has placed some urgency for the creation of new social media platforms, each with its own spin on content creation and user experience. Let’s go over the latest social platforms to make it to the limelight.
What it is: Officially launched in January of 2020, the Byte app allows users to upload and share content through videos with a six-second limit. If this sounds eerily similar to the Vine app, it should: Dom Hofmann, the creator of Byte was also the co-founder of Vine.
How it works: Byte provides its users (known as Byters) with a very basic interface, which allows for an easy process when it comes to uploading and exploring content. Users can also caption their short videos, but because of the app’s basic nature, stickers and text effects are not yet a possibility. The platform also allows you to track your growth by seeing who is following your profile and who is liking and commenting on your bytes (videos).
Who uses it: In its first week of existence, Byte experienced 1.3 million downloads, surpassing the number of downloads Vine experienced in its first week. Of the 1.3 million, the United States accounted for 70% of them. For brands looking to target the North American market, Byte may hold some value.
What it is: Clubhouse is a platform that takes the norms and practices of social media as we know it and turns them on their head. Every major social platform out there values visual content above anything else. Conversely, Clubhouse is a predominantly audio-based app that encourages its users to network and exchange ideas through conversation.
How it works: One thing that makes Clubhouse different from any other social media platform is its exclusivity. While almost all other social media networks measure success based on their number of active users, Clubhouse operates by invitation only. The only way to join the Clubhouse platform is to be invited by someone who’s already a user.
Once invited, users can enter live “rooms” where they are able to chat with others and share stories with people of similar interests. However, since no conversations are recorded on the app, once a room has been closed, the conversations that were had are gone forever. Although Clubhouse is quite different from traditional social media platforms in many aspects, it is still a network, which means users still have the ability to follow other accounts.
Who uses it: There are about 2 million active users per week on the Clubhouse social platform. Although there isn’t much research on the demographics of its users, the app can be quite beneficial for those who are looking to connect with the community through networking and conversation. For brands looking to create content around podcasts and interviews with professionals of any given background, Clubhouse offers the perfect opportunity.
(Since writing this blog, Parler has been disabled.)
What it is: Since its creation in 2018, the social media platform Parler has prided itself on being a non-biased, free speech arena for users to be able to express their thoughts without the threat of censorship.
How it works: Parler is intentionally designed in a similar fashion to its number one competitor, Twitter, which provides for a similar user experience. The app allows its users to like, comment on, and share content. Because of its strong backing for free speech, Parler has a 1,000-character limit for its users’ social posts, which greatly surpasses Twitter’s limit of 280 characters.
Who uses it: With controversy surrounding the idea of other social media entities deleting posts or even banning users from using their platforms, a large number of free speech advocates flocked to join Parler and apps alike. Shortly after the 2020 US Presidential Election, Parler became the number one downloaded app and experienced another spike in joins after it was announced that former President Donald Trump had been banned from using Facebook, Twitter, and other apps.
Although Parler’s user policy states that it welcomes all individuals looking for a place to converse without censorship, the app generally attracts conservative thinking users.
What it is: Like Parler, Rumble is a social media app that puts free speech at the top of its list of priorities. Founded in 2013, this video sharing platform sees itself as a direct competitor to YouTube.
How it works: Similar to YouTube, users of Rumble can create, upload, and share video content. The platform also offers a custom video player feature, a video exchange, and video hosting.
Who uses it: Just like the Parler app, Rumble experienced a dramatic increase in user downloads during the 2020 US Presidential Elections. Conservative content creators have begun to abandon YouTube for Rumble in search of the freedom to create and share videos without the fear of censorship.
What it is: TikTok is a social platform that allows users to create and share short videos on any number of topics. TikTok differs from the aforementioned Byte app in that it allows for a longer video length, ranging from 15 seconds to one minute. The social platform is also commonly compared to the other popular short-form video app Musical.ly, but differs from it as well since TikTok’s content has a wider scope than the lip-syncing videos Musical.ly provided.
How it works: Users can create videos based on the ideas of challenges, dances, tricks, or just funny videos. By keeping the length of the videos rather short, TikTok has made content creation and consumption effortless.
Who uses it: Generally speaking, the typical TikTok user is younger in age, with 41% of total users falling between the ages of 16 and 24. Although TikTok does not offer traditional advertising opportunities, brands can still make an impact by encouraging user-generated content through brand themed challenges and contests.
Which one is right for my brand?
It’s worth noting that not all of these social media platforms may make for a good fit with your brand. For the best results, analyze which of these networks your target audience is spending the most time on and incorporate those into your marketing strategy.
Need help developing the best marketing strategy for your business? Reach out to the Summit Creative Marketing team today!