Google’s latest foray into the social media space has caught many by surprise. The launch of Tangi in late January 2020 has sparked a lot of buzz in the tech and marketing space. Seen by many as a response to the rise of TikTok, Tangi has set itself apart for now by claiming to be an educative platform that will allow people to upload DIY (do it yourself) videos in a short video format.
According to Tangi’s team leader Coco Mao, the platform is built to serve videos based on hobbies like cosmetics, cooking, arts & crafts, fashion, and so on, in a short 60-second video.
The 60-second boundation seems to be driven by the popularity of TikTok. The Chinese mobile app has outpaced the engagement and growth rate of other tech giants like Facebook and Twitter. Its intuitive algorithm which is tailored to deliver content users want to see is at the heart of its success.
Seeing an opportunity to reach people through this format, Google and its launch of Tangi can be seen as an interesting moment. Tangi is still a closed platform available only on iOS devices and showing content from a selected group of creators.
Clearly, Google is testing the platform right now and figuring out ways to improve it in order to compete with the likes of TikTok. If you are someone old in digital marketing, you would probably be a little apprehensive about Google entering the social media scene.
After all, one doesn’t need to have been a student at a top digital marketing institute to know that Google is generally not the best at creating and running social media platforms.
In this article, we will discuss Google’s history with social media platforms and how Tangi could change the narrative.
Google and Social Media – A Bad History
Google is known to be a company that excels at almost anything it does. It bought YouTube at a time when no one knew how to monetize it and turned it into a giant money-spinner. It overtook everyone in the email space with Gmail. Other auxiliary services like navigation, business listing, blogging, and so on, have slowly been monopolized by Google.
Social media is one territory where it has struggled to find success. Orkut remained popular for a while but was taken over by Facebook. Later attempts to stop Facebook culminated in the coming of Google Plus. While Google Plus managed to get some traction, it failed to get nearly as much traction as needed to survive in the face of rising forcers like Twitter and Instagram. In April 2009, Google Plus was shunted.
Could Tangi be The Answer?
Social media is always a risky space to bet on, especially early in a platform’s life cycle. Not long ago, services like Vine and Musically were making waves until they weren’t. Given Tangi is backed by Google, one can expect it to get more traction than another run-of-the-mill social media app. However, its long term success is dependent on a lot of factors.
For one, TiktTok dominates because of its imperious content recommendation system which has roots in AI and machine learning. If Google, which has been working on AI and ML for a long time, were to make implement a better AI system within Tangi to outclass TikTok’s content recommendation, one could see Google gain ground in the social media sphere.
This is a long shot, though. TikTok has a much better and deeper connection with its audience than other social media platforms would like to believe.
In conclusion, we discussed the launch of Tangi, Google’s attempt to take on TikTok at its own game.
About the Author –Gaurav Heera is a popular content development consultant currently working at Eduburg, an institute known for its digital marketing.