We’re an leisure utility, not a social community like Fb – Reuters

TikTok is fully aware that Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg is redesigning Facebook and Instagram apps to look more like his popular short video service. But TikTok has no interest in imitating Facebook.

“Facebook is a social platform,” Blake Chandlee, president of global business solutions for TikTok, told CNBC on Thursday. “They built all their algorithms based on the social graph. This is their main skill. Ours is not. »

Chandlee, who spent 12 years on Facebook before joining TikTok in 2019, said his former employer is likely to run into problems if he tries to copy TikTok and ultimately provide an inferior experience for users and brands.

Facebook launched Instagram Reels in 2020 as its first real breakthrough in the short video market. Last year, he brought this service to his main Facebook application.

“We’re a platform for fun,” Chandlee said. “The difference is significant. That’s a huge difference. »

Facebook boss Tom Alison told The Verge this week that he sees TikTok stealing more and more shares of the world’s largest social network. Facebook plans to change its main feed to look more like TikTok by recommending more content whether it is shared by friends or not.

“I think what we probably haven’t fully accepted or seen is how social this format could be,” Alison told The Verge.

A recent Facebook appearance confirms this. Meta’s stock price has fallen 52% this year, worse than the Nasdaq, which has fallen 32%. In April, the company announced that revenues in the second quarter could fall for the first time compared to the year before.

Earlier this year, Zuckerberg acknowledged the increased competitive pressure from TikTok and said: “That’s why our focus on Reels is so important in the long run. »

TikTok is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance, which is a private company.

Chandlee said that the story is not on Zuckerberg’s side and compares his current problem with the challenge that Google faced when he tried to take Facebook into his game.

“You remember when Google created Google+,” Chandlee said. On Facebook, “we had war rooms then. It was a big problem. “Everyone was worried about that,” he said.

But no matter how much money Google invested in its efforts on social media, it could not compete with Facebook, which has become the default place for people to connect with friends and share photos and updates.

“It has become clear that Google’s value is search and that Facebook is really good on social media,” Chandlee said.

“I see the same thing now,” he added. “We are really good at what we do. We present these cultural trends and the unique experience that people have at TikTok. It just won’t have it on Facebook unless Facebook is completely moving away from its social values, which I just don’t think will be okay. »

Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Chandlee added that he deeply respects Zuckerberg and sees both Facebook and Google as strong competition. However, he noted that TikTok has a number of competitors around the world, including e-commerce and live streaming companies.

Chandlee said he had not seen a slowdown in spending on TikTok ads, despite reports from companies such as Snap, which told investors that advertising revenue was hurting inflation and threatening a recession. Snap stocks have lost nearly three-quarters of their value this year.

“I’ve heard there will be a slowdown in the ad market, 2% to 6%, but we haven’t seen that,” Chandlee said. “We do not see the headwind seen by others. »

SEE: Snap has a problem with TickTook, says Mitchell Green of Lead Edge Capital

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