Two things can be true at once.
For example, while TikTok and YouTube Shorts excel at engagement, Instagram is the strongest platform in terms of reach, offering 10 percent higher reach on average than TikTok, which conversely offers 35 percent higher engagement over Instagram.
“The KPIs are slightly different across platforms, but the net learning is that they’re all important; they all matter, just for different things,” said Kate Kenner Archibald, chief marketing officer at Dash Hudson.
Among the key social media trends identified by Dash Hudson are that regardless of platform, entertainment-focused strategies win; TikTok heavy-hitters — like Florence by Mills — who bring their strategy to Instagram Reels are subsequently seeing sizable wins on the platform, and on YouTube (where engagement is not a metric, but rather video views and viewer retention are KPIs), Shorts receive a 20 percent higher engagement rate than long-form videos, though brands have been slow to fold them into their strategy.
“Previously, it was more effective for brands to partner with influencers on YouTube than to make their own content, but Shorts have changed the game — they provide a great avenue for short-form video that didn’t exist before, and a lighter brand lift from a production standpoint,” Archibald said.
Founded by Ariana Grande and Millie Bobby Brown, respectively, R.e.m. Beauty and Florence by Mills have made their way to the top on TikTok primarily through UGC and tutorials, rather than leaning on their celebrity, noted Dash Hudson customer insights manager, Quinn Williams.
Here, Dash Hudson’s who’s who on which brands are winning by engagement across platforms.
TikTok top performers by engagement rate:
- Ourself: 22.1 percent
- Sigma Beauty: 15.4 percent
- R.e.m. Beauty: 12.8 percent
- Florence by Mills: 11.6 percent
- Tatcha: 10.5 percent
Instagram top performers by engagement rate:
- Florence by Mills: 3.4 percent
- Tree Hut: 2.6 percent
- Laneige U..S.: 2.5 percent
- Kailav beauty: 2.1 percent
- Zalando Beauty: 1.7 percent
YouTube top performers by video percentage viewed (viewer retention):
- Alterna Haircare: 314 percent
- Cetaphil Brasil: 245 percent
- Clinique: 104 percent
- Cetaphil Polska: 97 percent
- Bobbi Brown: 95 percent