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TikTok Updates: Audio Video Content, Shopping Features, and Beyond

TikTok Updates: Audio Video Content, Shopping Features, and Beyond

Are you informed about the latest changes on TikTok? Curious about recent TikTok updates that could impact marketers and business owners?

In this article, we delve into the recent TikTok changes affecting your marketing strategies.

#1: TikTok Sounds

UMG decided to remove its recordings from the platform following unsuccessful contract negotiations between TikTok and Universal Music Group (UMG), the largest music catalog in the world.

Thus, TikTok will presently quiet any UMG music highlighted in recordings, provoking clients to choose elective music choices from different names to supplant the eliminated content.

Our Insight: The recent removal of UMG’s catalog from TikTok carries significant implications for both the platform and content creators. With UMG representing some of the industry’s biggest names in music, numerous videos now face muting due to copyright issues.

This development prompts TikTok marketing expert Keenya Kelly to question the sustainability of TikTok’s practice of allowing free use of songs in user-generated content (UGC).

While this approach has fueled TikTok’s rapid growth and facilitated creators’ incorporation of popular music, it seems improbable that major labels would not eventually demand greater compensation. Not long ago, brands had to pay substantial fees to license these songs.

While we hope for a mutually beneficial agreement between TikTok and UMG that maintains affordable usage, it wouldn’t be surprising if the era of freely using chart-topping hits comes to an end. Such a development would represent a significant setback for creators and TikTok’s cultural landscape.

Yet, with major corporate interests at play, priorities may shift from serving TikTok users’ best interests to maximizing profits. The upcoming months will reveal whether music and short-form video content can continue to symbiotically benefit each other on this immensely popular platform.

See Also: A Revolution in the World of Free Music Downloads

#2: TikTok AI Song

TikTok has unveiled an experimental feature known as AI Song, harnessing artificial intelligence to craft original songs based on user-provided text prompts.

Powering this lyric generation capability is Bloom, TikTok’s expansive language model employing machine learning algorithms. TikTok advises users that the AI-generated lyrics may contain inaccuracies and could generate similar lyrics for multiple users prompted with similar inputs.

The rollout of this feature in an experimental capacity aims to gather user feedback, enabling TikTok to refine and enhance AI songwriting capabilities over time.

Our Insight: We view this as a remarkably innovative concept that aligns with current trends in AI and music. It offers convenience for TikTok creators while sparking discussions about copyright issues, artist compensation, and the intersection of automation with the creative process.

On the positive side, this feature lowers barriers to content creation. The ability to swiftly generate songs tailored to desired genres, artist names, and topics facilitates broader participation. We appreciate the creative parodies and trends often inspired by user-generated songs.

However, the introduction of AI Song also raises concerns about AI-generated content controversies and fair compensation for musicians on TikTok. As AI Song gains traction, it could strain relations between platforms and record labels further. We hope AI tools can complement human artists rather than replace them.

Overall, the launch of AI Song underscores TikTok’s innovative spirit and ambition but may disrupt the industry’s conventional norms. Its ultimate impact remains uncertain as the technology and its implementation evolve. However, we anticipate ongoing complex discussions surrounding intellectual property, music rights, and society’s valuation of creative content.

#3: TikTok Video Experience

TikTok has begun testing longer horizontal videos, informing select creators that it will “boost” such videos exceeding a minute in length within 72 hours of posting. This viewership boost applies to creators active on TikTok for at least three months, excluding advertisements or political content.

Our Insight: TikTok’s exploration of longer horizontal videos represents a potential transformation in creators’ approach but risks alienating its core audience. Keenya sees this shift toward accommodating longer-form content as presenting both opportunities and challenges.

On one hand, evolving mobile viewing habits and increasing attention spans support the creation of more in-depth stories by allowing videos beyond the traditional 60-second limit. Offering horizontal viewing options could also enhance viewer retention.

However, deviating from its signature bite-sized vertical format risks diluting TikTok’s unique appeal. The platform’s explosive growth was fueled by its succinct vertical videos and addictive scrolling. Diverging too far from these core elements could prove worrisome.

Currently, viewers rarely engage with videos over three minutes in duration. Emulating platforms like YouTube excessively risks compromising TikTok’s distinctive qualities. Creators may lose motivation if longer videos fail to retain audience interest, affecting retention metrics adversely.

TikTok must strike a delicate balance between expanding functionalities for ambitious creators while preserving its essence as a simple, entertaining, and mobile-centric platform.

Aggressively pushing for landscape videos risks fixing something that isn’t broken. However, providing moderate flexibility could empower creators to take calculated risks. TikTok must navigate this terrain carefully to nurture, rather than undermine, the factors that propelled its success.

#4: TikTok Analytics

Updates to TikTok’s Creative Center

TikTok has implemented changes to its Creative Center tool, restricting advertisers’ access to specific data. Previously, the Creative Center enabled advertisers to search for hashtags and access analytics on videos utilizing those tags. However, TikTok quietly removed the search button from the interface in the first week of January 2023.

Furthermore, certain hashtags related to politics and war are no longer functional within the tool. Upon inquiry about these unannounced alterations, TikTok clarified that the Creative Center will now only provide data on the top 100 hashtags within various industries, such as pets and travel. Notably, categories like news, politics, and global events seem to have been excluded from this updated feature.

Third-Party Measurement

The TikTok Marketing Partners Program has introduced two new measurement tools, Cross-Channel and Lift, aimed at providing brands with deeper insight into the effectiveness of TikTok advertising.

Our Perspective:

TikTok’s expansion of its advertising analytics offers opportunities but also raises privacy concerns. We are intrigued by the additional dimensional data now available, allowing for a more comprehensive evaluation of multi-channel campaigns.

This functionality enables advertisers to attribute conversions to multiple touchpoints, facilitating better budget optimization across TikTok, other social platforms, and offline ads based on real ROI.

However, the implementation of in-feed polling and “not interested” question prompts raises concerns. While we understand TikTok’s desire for richer audience insights, frequent surveys may be perceived as invasive by users.

Additionally, the popups that interrupt scrolling could be seen as manipulative, even if answering the questions only takes a few seconds.

As marketers, we value TikTok’s robust analytics for proving ad spend efficiency. However, as users, we hope the platform prioritizes privacy over excessive targeting. TikTok’s appeal lies in its fun and engaging content, not forced brand exposure.

We believe advertisers should utilize these tools judiciously to enhance the TikTok experience, avoiding overly prescriptive ads that detract from the platform’s essence. Leveraging data to connect users with relevant brands is positive, but it should not come at the expense of personal agency.

#5: TikTok Shopping

TikTok is currently experimenting with a new feature aimed at transforming user videos into shopping opportunities, aiming to bolster its eCommerce presence in the United States.

This innovative technology automatically identifies objects within videos and prompts viewers to explore similar products available for purchase on TikTok Shop. This marks a departure from TikTok’s previous approach, which only allowed select influencers or brands to tag items.

While TikTok incentivizes creators to promote shoppable products, this new feature seamlessly integrates products into regular users’ videos, enhancing the browsing experience. However, early testing has revealed inconsistent accuracy, with unrelated items occasionally being tagged as “similar.”

Our Perspective:

TikTok’s forceful push toward shoppable video content dangers weakening the legitimacy of certified makers. Many TikTok Shop users are encouraged to participate in affiliate marketing to earn commissions for promoting products as the platform grows.

While this presents a chance for makers to adapt their substance, there is a worry that steady item advancement could think twice about.

Creators are best able to showcase products organically, rather than feeling obligated to promote them due to sponsorship arrangements. Viewers value reviews from trusted individuals over generic sales pitches.

While monetization is important, maintaining authenticity is crucial for influencer commerce. TikTok must strike a balance to ensure that creators prioritize building community alongside commercial endeavors.

Authenticity and vulnerability are key to establishing rapport with audiences. As AI technology continues to automate product integration, it’s essential to preserve the human touch. While earning income through affiliate sales is beneficial, it should not come at the expense of audience loyalty.

#6: TikTok Accessibility

TikTok recently introduced dynamic text sizing to enhance accessibility.

Our Perspective:

The introduction of dynamic text sizing represents a significant step toward inclusivity. Allowing users to scale on-screen text according to their preferences is crucial for ensuring accessibility. However, there are potential drawbacks, as dynamically expanding text may obscure creators’ carefully placed graphics.

For example, creators like Keenya often rely on fixed caption sizes, and enlarging these captions could result in them overlapping other essential elements. Nonetheless, prioritizing individual viewing preferences over aesthetic considerations is essential for promoting equity and inclusivity on the platform.


In this comprehensive analysis of recent TikTok updates, we’ve explored significant shifts impacting marketers, creators, and users alike. From the implications of UMG’s catalog removal to the introduction of innovative features like AI Song and longer horizontal videos, TikTok continues to evolve rapidly.

As the platform refines its analytics tools and experiments with eCommerce integrations, it faces critical decisions balancing monetization with user experience.

Moreover, initiatives like dynamic text sizing underscore TikTok’s commitment to accessibility. While these advancements offer energizing open doors, they additionally present difficulties requiring cautious thought.

Stakeholders must adjust to TikTok’s fluid nature as the platform moves forward, and embrace innovation while preserving its distinctive culture and user engagement.

Mark Keats

Hey there! It's Mark. I'm a tech enthusiast and content writer, passionate about all things tech. I love exploring the latest gadgets, reviewing apps, and sharing helpful tech tips. Our innovative approach combines accessible explanations of intricate subjects with succinct summaries, empowering you to comprehend how technology can enhance your daily life. Are you prepared to expand your knowledge and stay ahead in the world of tech? Let's embark on this enlightening journey together. Get In Touch via Email
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