Where will TikTok users land after a possible US ban?

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As the possibility of a TikTok ban grows in the US, users are looking for other platforms to satisfy their short-video needs. In a Cowen survey, 26% of adult US users said they’d switch to Instagram Reels, and 21% said they’d head to YouTube Shorts. Meanwhile, 37% had no plans to use another short-video app.

Beyond the chart: A TikTok ban would be a major blow for ByteDance and TikTok creators, but it could be a lifeline for Meta. With Facebook’s user base shrinking and Instagram’s stagnating, a migration to Reels—albeit a reluctant one—could reinvigorate the platforms.

Just because users would move to other social video apps doesn’t mean ad dollars would, too. Our principal analyst Jasmine Enberg said retail media could be a beneficiary if the ban takes place. But that’s still a big “if.”

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Methodology: Data is from the December 2022 Cowen "Cowen Survey: Assessing Beneficiaries If TikTok Is Shut Down in the US." 2,500 US adults ages 18+ were surveyed during November 2022.