TikTok and YouTube are both massive platforms at the top of the list of many businesses looking to promote themselves online. Knowing which platform suits your business will come down to how you intend to use it and the type of content you’re making. In the endless grudge match that is TikTok vs. YouTube, we’re going to discover which will be the winner.
Part 1: Considering YouTube or TikTok?
The first thing to understand about YouTube and TikTok is that they can’t really be compared. YouTube is a video-sharing platform that launched in 2005 and is currently owned by Google. TikTok is a social media platform created in 2017 by ByteDance.
While the video-sharing platform might have similarities to social media platforms, the functions and uses of each are very different, and, as you’ll see, they don’t need to compete with one another.
YouTube is a content management system that focuses solely on video, similar to how blogs focus on the written word. YouTube is also a search engine that can help you be found through a range of search methods, such as Google Video results.
TikTok is one of the latest social media platforms to use video content to connect users and start conversations. The short video duration and simplistic editing solution create fast, easily consumed content.
For businesses, YouTube is used to create a collection of promotional and resource-based content which is highly searchable across the internet. TikTok offers a fast and quick way to connect with your followers.
Part 2: YouTube vs. TikTok for Business: Make the Right Choice
|Features||Tons of features for creators and businesses||Lots of effects but limited on overall features.|
|Range of Content||Everything from how-to videos to docu-series.||Limited due to content length.|
|Quality of Content||Everything from basic video styles to full productions.||Quicker, user-generated content results in lower overall quality.|
|Ease of Use||Lots of the features can be confusing for beginners.||Super easy to use and publish content.|
|Managing Content||In-depth content management system.||No content management beyond deleting.|
|Ads||Numerous Ad choices – can be complicated and expensive.||Simple but powerful ad options.|
|Max Video Length||12 hours||Up to 10 Minutes|
|Preferred Video Length||5 to 15 min depending on the content||15 to 60 seconds|
YouTube vs TikTok Main Similarities
- The most obvious similarity between YouTube and TikTok is that they both deal with user-generated video content. Viewers have very similar engagement options, including sharing, commenting, liking, and following/subscribing to your channel.
- There are many differences within the platform between how content is created, but both platforms allow for subtitles and text overlays to make the most accessible content possible.
- Unlike Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, which create your feed from a mix of your network, trending, and sponsored posts, YouTube and TikTok use algorithms to recommend content based on the viewer’s preferences, interactions, and previous activity.
- Analytics is an essential part of any platform, as it is a vital tool to see how your content and channel are growing. Both TikTok and YouTube offer analytics suited to the platform’s primary use. YouTube offers far more viewer details, but it is unlikely you’ll need as in-depth information for your TikTok content.
TikTok vs YouTube Main Differences
- YouTube Studio offers a variety of editing tools, including trimming, adding music, and some effects, but this is one area that TikTok wins hands-down. Not only can you add music, titles, and stickers, this social media platform offers a range of filters and interactive elements such as polls and VFX.
- TikTok also has a fantastic React feature, which allows you to record a video alongside one from another user. React videos appear side-by-side as a split-screen in your feed, tagging the original video; this unique feature has created many trends, such as users composing music and dancing together.
- While both platforms offer music, TikTok has a far greater catalog to choose from. Many artists have found TikTok to be a fantastic platform for promoting their music.
- As we’ve already mentioned, YouTube focuses on long-form content, with the average length of a YouTube video coming in at 11 minutes. YouTube has released a #Shorts section for users to compete with TikTok, but the function is still in Beta testing and has a long way to go to come close to the usability of TikTok.
- Viewers can reach out to creators on the platform via video comments, but only TikTok allows direct messaging.
- What’s more, you can save your TikTok videos to your local devices but with YouTube, you’ll need to sign up to the Pro account to download your videos.
- TikTok has several revenue streams available to its content creators, and the platform as a whole is geared toward making earning easy. Once you’ve unlocked the monetization options, you’ll find many opportunities, find out more here. While, YouTube allows creators to share a portion of the ad revenue from adverts displayed before, during, and over their videos. Unfortunately, YouTube gives its creators very little control over what ads are shown when, and to make a living, you’ll need millions of views.
Understanding the Algorithm
Any platform aims to keep users engaged and using it, so the algorithms for YouTube and TikTok work specifically for the types of content that perform best.
The most popular types of content on YouTube are commentaries, documentaries, product reviews, tutorials, and reaction videos. The algorithm looks at metrics such as watch time and likes/dislikes overviews, but specifically, YouTube focuses on viewer satisfaction due to the longer formats.
With YouTube, your audience retention, likes, and external shares will help boost you in the search. The average length of any given video will depend on your content, but the highest-performing videos are between 5 and 15 minutes long.
TikTok uses its algorithm to curate content in their For You section, based on your previous engagements, searches, and follows. When you publish a video, the platform selects a small group of users to see it in their For You section. The more attention and engagement your video receives, the more people it will be shown to.
TikTok started as a 60-second video platform but soon boosted that to 3 minutes. The latest update allows videos up to 10 minutes in length, but the most popular content is still between 15 and 60 seconds long. While TikTok may be trying to compete with YouTube for long-form content, creators and users are slightly baffled by the decision as it takes away from what made TikTok special.
Part 3: Top 3 Questions About Using TikTok & YouTube as a Creator
Is TikTok Good for YouTubers?
In short, yes, TikTok is fantastic for YouTubers. The short-form content and easy use of hashtags make finding new and exciting creators a piece of cake. All YouTubers use social media to promote long-form content through clips and trailers, and TikTok is a fantastic option.
To use TikTok to promote your YouTube content, you’ll need to make sure your bio is set up to direct your followers to your videos. Use call to actions and hashtags to find your audience and encourage them to visit your channel.
Is YouTube Easier than TikTok?
TikTok is a lot easier to use for creators producing short content, but it can be a little fiddly for longer videos. YouTube is a video management platform, so the editing will likely be completed before uploading. You can also upload pre-edited videos to TikTok, but you lose some fun by not creating in-app content.
TikTok also offers fantastic engagement, and with a bit of practice, you can find yourself getting thousands of views. YouTube is more of a challenge when it comes to growing your account.
Can I Put TikTok Videos on YouTube?
You can download your TikTok videos from within the app and save them to your camera roll. Once you have your short video, you can share it across other social media platforms as well as upload them as YouTube Shorts. The downloaded version has a TikTok watermark, but this can be a good thing, encouraging your YouTube subscribers to check you out there.
TikTok and YouTube are both fantastic tools that can help promote your business and engage your audience. While the companies behind the platforms are in fierce competition, users and creators have found ways to use video management and social media offerings together to funnel audiences between different types of content and messages. Only time will tell who will be number one in the TikTok versus YouTube battle, but in the meantime, try out both, making your business the winner.