TikTok’s new election guide could prepare millions of young, U.S. users to vote for the first time in next month’s presidential election.
A new in-app voting guide will soon live on TikTok’s Discover page to ensure its U.S. users, more than 65% of which are over the age of 18, are registered and ready to vote in November. To help users view reliable information on federal, state, and local candidates, TikTok will also link its voting guide to the bottom of election-related videos posted from verified accounts. Other voting-focused videos from TikTok users will also feature a bottom page banner that viewers can click on to learn more about the upcoming election. In addition to information on candidates and voting dates, TikTok’s guide includes voting resources for people with disabilities, those with past convictions, and voting information for overseas citizens and out of state students.
TikTok worked with BallotReady, the National Association of Secretaries of State, and SignVote to produce content for its voting guide. Working with government and election organizations could help TikTok grow trust with its users and elevate its profile as an educational platform. With 100 million U.S. users, TikTok’s guide has the potential to reach and resonate with a large audience—and Gen Zers in particular—according to a Gartner report on the topic. Though it makes sense that TikTok wants to connect with millions of young voters, creating an election guide in the midst of a U.S. legal battle could seem problematic to some users. However, TikTok is in good company with its voting guide, as it follows the lead of Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter by encouraging Americans to get out and vote. Several non-social media platforms have also rolled out voting resources, including NBC News and Puma, which could show how actively brands are listening to the consumer demand to address social issues.
With 75% of Gen Z TikTokers noting the platform helped them learn about social justice issues and politics, its new voting guide could increase validity with current and potential users. Its U.S. election push could also set TikTok up to run similar initiatives in the future, giving new meaning to its new brand tagline “It Starts on TikTok”.