TikTok is a top source of new music discovery, according to research

Thanks to a TikTok video that went viral, Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams’ reached number two on Rolling Stone’s Top 100 chart in 2020.  — AFP pic
Thanks to a TikTok video that went viral, Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams’ reached number two on Rolling Stone’s Top 100 chart in 2020. — AFP pic

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SAN FRANCISCO, June 19 — It’s a familiar refrain. Music plays a key role on TikTok and can even become the main draw of a video.

That’s one of the reasons the Chinese application was interested in investigating the relationship its users have with music. According to its research, 80 per cent of users use the platform to discover new music.

Does Generation Z’s favourite social network help people stay up to date on what’s new in the world of music? That’s what the recently released results of studies* conducted by TikTok clearly suggest.

The first finding is that 80 per cent of users turn to TikTok to keep up with the latest music releases.

Eighty per cent say “they discover new music on the platform and that it is the number 1 place for music discovery — more than other digital platforms, streaming services and friends,” explains the report.

It is largely thanks to the “For you” feed, where 56 per cent of these discoveries are made directly through the algorithm, thus emphasizing its importance even more.

In the words of Paul Hourican, Head of Music Operations UK at TikTok, music is at the “heart” of the TikTok experience.” “Our community often research, stream, and buy songs they hear while browsing the app,” he noted.

TikTok as talent scout?

This is not the first time that the platform vaunts its street cred as an avant-garde ally of the music scene.

A powerful dynamic attributed to three main factors, illustrated by TikTok. The first one concerns the discovery of new music and the consequences of that beyond the platform. In fact, according to the platform’s research, almost half of the users add newly discovered music to their favourites.

Forty-six per cent look at the artist’s profile and up to 43 per cent decide to follow the artist — on TikTok, of course. Such ripple effects can be decisive for emerging artists, which makes the attractiveness of the platform even more important from a marketing point of view.

Another conclusion concerns these new talents. TikTok claims that 4 out of 10 users have discovered new artists through the app. And classic music hits are also part of the phenomenon.

Studies conducted by the platform have shown that 4 out of 5 users are more likely to share a video if it contains music that makes them feel nostalgic.

This was notably the case for Fleetwood Mac with the hit Dreams, thanks to the buzz of Nathan Apodaca and his video which became the second most viral video on the platform in 2020. — ETX Studio

*A qualitative study conducted in collaboration with PRS IN VIVO in the second half of 2020 and a quantitative study conducted with InSites Consulting, in early 2021, with 4,013 respondents located in France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy and Spain

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