Indian short-video platforms bring back 97% of TikTok's user base: RedSeer

According to the latest report by the platform titled ‘Short-form video- The Rise of Made in India digital content’, Indian short-form apps have onboarded around 30-35% new users over the past year

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Apr 22, 2021 11:36 AM

Indian short-video platforms like ShareChat's Moj, Dailyhunt's Josh, Times Internet's MX TakaTak, and InMobi-owned Glance's Roposo among others have managed to bring back 97% of TikTok's user base thanks to aggressive marketing and user acquisition.
According to the latest report by RedSeer Consulting titled ‘Short-form video- The Rise of Made in India digital content’, Indian short-form apps have successfully retained 67% of the TikTok era users and have onboarded around 30-35% new users over the past year.

The new users who are onboarded are largely from tier 2 cities. This trend is mostly driven by a stronger focus of platforms on vernacular content and ‘Bharat’ positioning. Overall, 60- 62% of the short-form users are from Tier 2+ cities.
However, the time spent on the other hand has gradually increased, reaching 55% compared to June 2020. While Indian platforms have come a long way in the last few months, they have more scope to improve their content quality and product experience.
The study shows that 75% of the current short-form video users will likely stick to these domestic apps and are unlikely to switch back to Chinese apps even if the ban was lifted. The study has focused on the major Indian short-form apps including Josh, Moj, MX Takatak, and Roposo which comparatively had more awareness among the user sets.

“In less than one year post-Tik Tok ban, Indian platforms have shown a strong V-shaped recovery, bouncing back to 100% of the pre-ban daily user base. This shows how platforms were able to design the product, execute their plans, and market it aggressively in a very short period of time. This is a strong indicator of how the Indian digital ecosystem has matured in the last few years," said RedSeer Consulting Associate Partner Ujjwal Chaudhury.

He cautioned that the job is far from done for domestic players as they still have to reach the global and cross-sector benchmarks on engagement and retention which will further grow the monetisation potential for the entire ecosystem.

With strong network effects, the user base is growing fast, fuelling ecosystem growth, leading to a large monetisation potential for both influencers and platforms. Elite influencers with more than 10 million followers have a monthly earning of around $20,000-40,000. Influencers with 1 million followers can earn up to $1000-2.500 while budding creators with less than 1 million followers can earn $40-200.

The excess of time due to staying at home, coupled with the short-form platforms adopting a model wherein the pay monthly to the content creators has led to more people taking up content creation on these platforms, the study noted.

According to the study, Josh leads both on influencer and user end driven by strong performance in the Hindi belt and Tier-2+ cities. Moj has been a strong gainer across consumer and business metrics when compared to the last quarter. The growth has been driven by regional language markets especially the southern states.

On the other hand, Roposo has shown strong performance in Tier-1 cities compared to the smaller ones. MX Takatak leads in the net promoter score (NPS) in the metro cities. The platform has held challenges and hashtag events similar to TikTok, to gain market share.

The study noted that platforms with strong localisation and a better tech stack have enabled higher user satisfaction. It also noted that platforms that offer a wider reach and higher follower engagement to influencers have garnered higher influencer NPS.

It also highlighted that the gap between short-form and overall digital content on engagement and NPS indicators is narrowing. The short-video platforms have strong user repeat behaviour compared to other sectors due to the higher freshness of content. The time spent per DAU has been seeing consistent growth in the last few months as personalisation engines have become smarter. NPS is likely to start catching up in the next one year due to continuously improving the experience.

The short-form video has differentiated itself from other global social media and content through a strong ‘Bharat’ positioning. In Tier 2+ markets, vernacular focussed content and recreational genres such as comedy, dance, etc are more preferred. In Tier-1, Hindi content is preferred while music, food, and comedy genres are consumed the most. Metros have a preference for English content in genres like fashion, education, and motivational content.

Short-form video is moving from the middle of the internet funnel towards the top with the installed base of these platforms expected to reach 320 million by FY25. RedSeer noted that there is strong advertiser interest in short-form video platforms. Short-video platforms allow brands to capture an audience that is not available on other platforms. The presence of content in vernacular language helps advertisers to reach a wider audience. Further, advertisers incur a low cost of production on short-form video platforms as compared to other platforms. Lastly, there is immense opportunity for influencer marketing on these platforms.

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