TikTok for Advocacy: Nay or Yay?

A key part of advocacy campaigns is creating public demand for desired changes in society. You need lawmakers to hear people’s clamor. You need people to call for better policies or greater action from the government. Political leaders are duty-bound to listen to their constituents and address their concerns.

To create that social pressure on political leaders, you need to find the best platforms to connect with the public. You need a place where you can do your magic of changing minds and hearts. 

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A POWERFUL NEW PLATFORM

Today, there is an array of social media applications to use to reach your audience. Facebook and Twitter have long been maximized by advocates for their campaigns. But new platforms are emerging. One of them is TikTok.

Gaining massive popularity at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the video-sharing social media app is now available in over 150 countries. Its reach is incredible: over 1 billion users worldwide.

A large chunk of TikTok users are members of Gen Z: 41 percent of the users are aged between 16 and 24. TikTok is therefore especially helpful for advocacy aimed at younger audiences. 


MILLENNIALS AND THE DIGITAL NATIVES

In today’s political and technological landscape, campaigns are less likely to succeed without support from Millennials and Gen Zers. Known for being tech-savvy, Millennials (formally known as Generation Y) and Gen Zers dominate social media platforms. (Gen Zers are also known as digital natives, being born in the age of smartphones.)

This demographic, particularly Millennials, is known for being active when it comes to social causes. According to a study titled The Millennial Impact, Millennials are "everyday changemakers" who believe in the power of activism.

For their part, Gen Zers are forecast to become the best-educated generation in history, at least in the United States. Many nonprofit organizations see the value of engaging Gen Zers and Millennials. World Vision and Red Cross have TikTok accounts for their advocacy. 

Some nonprofit organizations may think that getting the support of digital natives and millennials may not be strategic for all advocacy campaigns. But the younger generation has always been key in social transformations. It will be a lost opportunity not to engage the young generation in efforts to effect social change.

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