The TikTok class is in session


Skyler Chase, 25, grew up watching vlogs and comedy sketches on YouTube. He wasn’t just having fun. He was learning professional skills to run his Los Angeles-based marketing agency and teach social media classes. Last September, he started a course on TikTok, completing what had been his only offering, a course on Instagram. The class took off because TikTok and its lower barrier to entry attracted people intimidated by YouTube, he said.

“On YouTube, creating content is totally different,” he said. “It’s really about having the quality of your video. You must have a nice camera. On TikTok, all you need to do is use your phone.

Mr Chase’s two-hour class, which the platforms say has more than 22,000 students on Skillshare and Udemy, borrows from his “YouTube experience” but is meant to be “a bit more accessible for the older generation”. he said.

Classes like Mr. Chase’s have attracted businesses interested in marketing on TikTok and young people who focus on content creation, said Alicia Hamilton-Morales, senior vice president of content, community and brand at Skillshare.

“Even though YouTube is so dominant and hugely successful, TikTok has made the desire to understand how to create and optimize a video bigger in a much larger market,” she said.

Angalee Schmidt, 25, took Mr. Chase’s course at the start of the pandemic to learn how to imagine and then create TikTok videos. Her job in tourism had dried up, so she cut back on her travels and started living full-time in Rochester, Minnesota, and sought a career change in social media marketing.

“Part of that was figuring out: how can I make money now?” said Mrs. Schmidt. His response came on TikTok. “I was seeing all these people making videos and I was like, ‘I can do this myself.'”

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