Soon Ent CEO Park Chang-woo talks during The Korea Herald`s Global Biz Forum on Wednesday. (Jenny Sung/The Korea Herald)
Park Chang-woo, founder and CEO of multichannel networking firm Soon Ent, said businesses should not misunderstand TikTok and must grab opportunities the platform presents.
Speaking at The Korea Herald’s Global Business Forum on Wednesday, Park emphasized that TikTok, a short-form video hosting service owned by Chinese company ByteDance, is more than an alternative to video-streaming juggernaut YouTube. YouTube focuses on creating intellectual property, while TikTok is more like a social networking platform, Park said.
The level of interaction between creators and followers and followers’ engagement are what sets TikTok apart from other video platforms, according to the CEO.
For instance, singer Zico’s “Any Song” challenge video was viewed 450 million times and garnered 1.5 million new videos that copied the original within three weeks, he said.
The high level of engagement, combined with the influence that content creators have, has changed how people make purchases. “Customers usually know what they want and search for it, but on platforms like TikTok you want to buy products that influencers are using and quite often make an impulse buy,” Park said. “A high volume of impulse buys could result in a high rate of return, but the sheer volume of e-commerce that occurs that way presents a new way of e-commerce,” Park noted.
Backed by the growing influence of content creators, Park said many businesses are rushing to collaborate with creators even when their target customers are not those in their teens and 20s, as more users in their 30s and 40s join the video platform.
“So even if you’ve had an established business for decades, it is worthwhile to check out and grab opportunities on platforms like TikTok,” Park recommended.
Park is a former producer with 20 years of experience. In 2016, he founded a performance production company, but saw an opportunity when two of the company artists began gathering followers exponentially at the end of 2017.
The company now has 85 content creators under its roster who together have 310 million followers. Out of the still-growing roster, eight content creators are in the top 20 ranking on TikTok in terms of follower numbers in South Korea. Ten content creators have more than 10 million followers, including No.2 WonJeong, with 44.1 million users. BTS has the most followers. (firstname.lastname@example.org