8 APR 2024

Gen Z still prefer TikTok, though growth is slowing down

A study by eMarketer revealed that, although the social network is the most popular among this generation, its growth is starting to slow down.

8 APR 2024

  • Facebook
  • X
  • Linkedin
  • Whatsapp

TikTok remains Gen Zers’ preferred social network in terms of time spent, but its growth is hitting a wall, according to a study by eMarketer. The company said that is natural, given the enormous amount of time they are already spending on the app.

eMarketer said that adult Gen Z TikTok users will spend an average of 1:16 on the app daily this year, which is roughly equivalent to an episode of “Stranger Things.” This cohort will make up the platform’s second-biggest age group in terms of users, just behind 25- to 34-year-olds.

Gen Z adults’ time spent with TikTok will approach their time spent with traditional TV. Many users in this age group watch movies and TV shows on TikTok, signaling that they view the app as an entertainment hub. TikTok is also trying to get more users to watch long-form video on the app.

Among Gen Z adults, average time spent with TikTok will inch up by 1.3% YoY in 2024 and by 1.0% YoY in 2025, marking the slowest growth of any generation. Frustrations over the app’s increasingly heavy ad load—partly due to the launch of TikTok Shop—could be driving the platform’s most engaged users to spend more time elsewhere, such as watching connected TV (CTV) and other forms of entertainment.

Despite TikTok's current plateau in growth among Gen Z users, it still maintains a significant presence as their preferred social platform. The insights from eMarketer's study indicate that while time spent on TikTok may not be surging as dramatically as before, it remains a formidable force in this demographic's daily routine. As adult Gen Z users allocate over an hour a day to TikTok, it's evident that the platform holds sway comparable to traditional TV consumption. This shift underscores TikTok's evolution into a multifaceted entertainment hub, where users engage with diverse content formats. However, as the platform navigates challenges such as ad saturation and competition for user attention, it must adapt to sustain its appeal among the most discerning demographic. With Gen Z's penchant for exploring alternative entertainment avenues like connected TV and other platforms, TikTok's trajectory hinges on its ability to innovate and cater to evolving user preferences while maintaining its distinctive charm.