Why the next viral social media channel is coming from emerging markets

  • Tiktok, which was created in China, witnessed an increase in the number of users on its app.
  • Silicon Valley, once the origin of the first generation of social media applications such as Facebook and Instagram, is losing its position as the world’s only tech powerhouse.
  • I invited Andy Tian, CEO of Asia Innovations Group, on the EMT podcast to discuss this shift in social media trends and the second generation of social media apps that are coming from emerging markets.

The Chinese founded Tiktok saw an explosion of users in its platform. Between 2019 and 2021, TikTok witnessed a 38% growth in monthly active users globally. In 2021, 689 million people used the short-form video sharing app on a monthly basis, up from 500 million in 2019.

With billions of people in lockdown, working and studying from home, and in need of socializing, the coronavirus pandemic is one of the causes that has resulted in an increasing interest in social networking.

Silicon Valley, once the birthplace of the first generation of social media apps, like Facebook and Instagram is loosing its place as the only tech hub in the world.

To talk about this shift in social media trends and the second generation of social media apps, I invited Andy Tian, CEO of Asia Innovations group to the EMT podcast.

I think that this is a generational shift. I think that is why we talk about the second generation of social products are going to be made in the emerging markets for emerging markets.

Andy Tian, CEO Asia Innovations Group

We talked about the next big trends in social media like Live Social that are coming from emerging markets apps:

Live social, by definition, means that we are socializing online with live video and live voice exactly like we’re doing right now. Now, live video and live voice are just basic features, like texting. 

There are a lot of social media apps that are already popular in developing countries, some more than the mainstream social channels like Facebook. Even dating apps like Tinder and Bumble that are made for Western countries, are not as popular as some local apps, Andy mentioned.

For example, one of these apps is called Lamour, is now the number one downloaded dating app across Middle East, India and is doing quite well in South America. Also, dating behaviours are different compared with western countries, Andy added.

Dating behavior is just very, very different for young people in emerging markets and which many of them are very, very okay with just online.

You can listen to the full episode here:

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