Google? Never heard of her. TikTok? My lifeblood.
According to reports from the New York Times, TikTok has officially surpassed Google as Gen Z’s primary source of information.
As a Gen Z cohort myself, this resonates with my personal experience. For everything from recipes to the best skincare products to how to unclog my sink, TikTok is the first app my thumb lands on. Like most of my generation, I’ve been conditioned to be a visual learner. Reading a review on Google just doesn’t do it for me anymore—I want to see a product being used and reviewed by a wide variety of people on my generation’s favorite app.
Of course, Google is far from irrelevant (I’m Gen Z, not a hermit). Once I find a product that I like on TikTok, I’ll Google it to find further (often, more reliable) information before making the final purchase. However, that doesn’t change the fact that TikTok is the first place I go.
Gen Z may be spearheading this migration, but we are certainly not alone. 76% of consumers currently use social media to discover or search for new brands and products. So, yes, your brand’s SEO strategy should extend far beyond Google.
TikTok search is driven by real-time conversations about brands and products. True or not, it appears more authentic to have a person speaking “to you” about something you’re considering trying out. Whether it’s a new hair product, adopting a different routine or changing the way you clean your shower, hearing directly from a person you perceive as relatable saying “this worked for me” can move a person much further than reading five-star reviews on Google.
Here are a few tips to ensure your brand is on the up and up with social search:
- FAQ-ize the results. Content should answer questions consumers typically have about your product in an exciting and informative way.
- Leverage UGC and influencers. Consumers are more likely to trust reviews and hacks from “just a person” rather than a big scary brand (even if your brand is neither big nor scary). Not to mention influencers tend to have larger and more loyal audiences than brands—especially on TikTok.
- Create a multi-platform SEO strategy. Social trends and keywords should inform your strategy on various platforms.
TLDR: Google isn’t going anywhere (duh). SEO is a vital marketing function that has the power to make or break a brand’s success over competitors. However, featuring relevant, educational and visually engaging content on social media has never been more important. From influencers and UGC to a brand’s feed, the decision-making and purchase cycle of consumers continues to evolve. The relationship between search and social will only strengthen, and it’s vital to plan accordingly.
Jessie Zenz is our bubbly Gen Z social media assistant account executive.
Interested in adding some rizz to your marketing strategy? Contact us today.