What makes each social network different is the type of content created, how that content is created, and why that content is created. Consumers share a large variety of content for different reasons on different social networks. And social media platforms are evolving, which changes what we share. Snapchat and TikTok have been big drivers of these evolutions. In a January interview Evan Spiegal, CEO of Snap, was asked what he thinks about TikTok. In a refreshingly honest answer, he said he “loves TikTok” and is a “big fan.” He went on to describe how he thinks about TikTok as a technology platform compared to other social networks. He thinks about the category of social technology as three tiers in a pyramid.
- Communication – Self-expression, talking to friends and close contacts, higher frequency. This would be where Snapchat and Messenger sits.
- Status – Showing people who you are, that you’re cool, getting likes and comments, lower frequency than communication. Instagram is the best example here.
- Talent – Making media to entertain other people, even lower frequency, higher production. Think TikTok and YouTube.