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Branding via social media

A study by IMC Krems examines the influence of TikTok videos on the behaviour of generation Z.

An empirical study conducted by IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems investigates the influence of TikTok videos on the behaviour of generation Z and how brands can use this video portal for communication purposes in a target group-oriented manner.

A study by IMC Krems examines the influence of TikTok videos on the behaviour of generation Z. (c)Monkey Business_stock.adobe.com

The results of the new study by Dr. Doris Berger-Grabner, professor at IMC Krems, and Barbara Németh, graduate of the degree programme “Unternehmensführung & E-Business Management“, show that TikTok has a significant influence on the behaviour of generation Z. Generation Z is predominantly those born between 1996 and 2015. The videos influence what the young people wear, how they speak and partly how they develop. 

Awareness and popularity

The video portal TikTok has recorded a significant increase in the number and frequency of use due to the corona pandemic, particularly among generation Z. Companies and brands that have communicated with and entertained generation Z specifically during this time, for example with hashtag challenges, have gained awareness and popularity. Generation Z uses a wide range of videos on TikTok. The content differs by age group and gender. 
“Generation Z watches and follows content from many brands that matter to them and follows selected influencers who also have a significant impact on their behaviour. This makes TikTok suitable for brand communication purposes to reach a new and younger target group, which in turn can significantly influence the purchasing decision behaviour of parents,” Berger-Grabner is convinced.

Channel for product marketing

The results of the focus group discussions are in line with secondary research, which suggests that 25 per cent of generation Z users actually buy a product after seeing it in a TikTok video. Using TikTok is a way to show a different side of the brand and appeal to a younger generation of buyers. “It's a popular platform when it comes to experimenting with videos and their content and informing generation Z about product uses and features. If a brand wants to cater to the preferences of a new and younger target group, TikTok offers an effective channel to market and experience its products and services,” says Berger-Grabner.

The results of the present study give reason to recommend the use of TikTok especially to those companies that want to increase brand awareness in a younger target group and visualise product information and/or application possibilities of their products.