Will TikTok’s latest update signal a shift in the video-sharing landscape?

Anna Otieno, Head of Research, Strategy & Insights

Carli Gernot, Content Development Specialist

TikTok recently announced it would expand its 3-minute cap on organic videos to 10-minutes. This signals a move to appeal to even more types of content creators.

The rapidly-growing video-sharing platform continues to be instrumental in helping shape how video content is created, consumed, delivered, and shared. As a result, creators, brands, and users are flocking to TikTok, driving the platform's expected growth to 24 million by 2025. That's just shy of YouTube with a predicted growth of 26 million by that time, demonstrating how the video-sharing platform is challenging YouTube’s 17-year dominance as the de-facto platform for content creators.

TikTok’s evolution 15-, 30-, 60-second and 3-minute videos to a much longer video format signals a rapidly-shifting video-sharing landscape. One where advertisers must be agile enough to capitalize on video trends to engage and attract new customers across creator-centric channels.

What’s really behind TikTok’s creator-fueled product evolution?

Put simply: the only way to stay relevant is to evolve.

TikTok’s embrace of longer-form video content is a move meant to appeal to more types of creators as well as older demographics. Research from AdWeek shows that 71% of the Gen Zs are on TikTok. No surprise there. But the video-sharing app is now growing an audience of older users. Statista finds that 20% of TikTok users are between 40-49 years of age — and 11% are over the age of 50.

By extending the length of video uploads, it presents the potential to keep viewers on the platform longer and offer even more monetization opportunities. Ten minutes of video gives creators more time to connect with their audiences, giving brands more time to engage with and sell to those audiences. Morning Consult found that 49% of TikTok users said they have purchased from a brand after seeing it advertised, promoted, or reviewed on the platform.

Does 10-minutes mean more revenue opportunities?

For creators, monetizing the longer format may be challenging. TikTok allows creators to earn money after 100,000 video views in the past 30 days. Longer videos may impact TikTok creators’ ability to reach that threshold.

For brands, there is a different story. Longer videos present new opportunities for brand-influencer collaborations, giving brands more real estate to showcase new products and engage on a deeper level with their target audience — all within TikTok's fun, playful package of filters, animations, and music.

Embracing the creator-led future of video-sharing platforms

Video-sharing platforms — most notably Instagram, Byte, and Triller — will likely take a queue from TikTok. As more users consume online content, these video-sharing platforms may take over as next-gen virtual malls—the hottest places to hang out, people watch, and spend money.

TikTok’s evolution from a short video app for kids into a platform set to more strongly compete with YouTube is a lesson in the power of reinvention. In response, brands will need to embrace an agile mindset by adapting to video trends as they continue to evolve across video-sharing platforms and other social media channels.