It's hard to ignore the reach of TikTok if you're a marketer.
Government officials and the FBI have raised concerns about the ownership of TikTok by a Chinese company that they say poses a risk to national security.
TikTok's one billion monthly active users make it a must- use platform for many marketers.
According to Jasmine Enberg, principal analyst for social media at Insider Intelligence, most creators and brands still use the platform to connect with their audiences.
She says that it has huge popularity among Gen Z's, the group that followed the younger generation.
Unless users are forced to leave, brands won't leave unless they do.
The app is not allowed on government devices. State lawmakers pressured universities to ban it on campus.
The risk of China being able to access U.S. data is one of the security concerns.
There are legitimate security concerns according to the executive director of the university's information security institute.
He said that the Chinese government uses location data to find people who are interested in them.
Dahbura says that even if a user doesn't work for a high-level agency, they could still associate with someone of interest.
He doesn't think people should use the app until the U.S. government gives it the green light.
Nicole Penn is the president of EGC Group, a Melville-based marketing and digital services firm.
TikTok said it was creating a U.S. Data Security Trust and Safety Team. There is a link at the bottom of this article.
In June, TikTok said that all new U.S. users would be routed to a secure environment in the cloud.
TikTok is more than just a place for joy and entertainment; it's where millions of Americans turn to grow their businesses, build careers, and create jobs. It is unfortunate that these false statements about TikTok could affect so many of their jobs.
Penn says it's almost impossible to fully abstain for marketers despite the controversy.
Andrew Hazen is the CEO of Bagel Boss.
The bagel chain has 12 stores on Long Island and uses the platform because its videos get a lot of engagement.
The chain decided not to put the TikTok logo on their coffee cups in fear of being banned.
When we order again, we can add it in three months.
If TikTok is banned, it will be a huge blow for brands, Enberg said.
The Long Island Aquarium uses it mostly for brand awareness.
She says that they will use other platforms to let people know what's happening at the aquarium.
Around 85% of the Long Island Aquarium's videos are silly, fun videos of their animals to whatever music is popular.
Some videos can get millions of views.
They downloaded the app on a phone that was only used for the aquarium's social media. She says there is no sensitive data associated with it.
Penn says that the shorter the video, the better, and they should be fun, light, informative, and inspiring.
Some creators on TikTok might be able to leverage their communities. She says that they are usually paid but that they may be less expensive.