With most employees working from home, Daily Active Users (DAU) on short-form video apps such as Josh, Moj, MX Takatak and Roposo are back to nearly 100 per cent of June 2020 levels, after the TikTok ban on June 29, 2020. The pre-ban DAU base was at 70 million plus, of which over 90 per cent were TikTok users.

DAUs are back to 97 per cent of June 2020 as a result of aggressive marketing and increased push by influencers and content creators on these platforms. The short-form video platforms have successfully retained 67 per cent of the TikTok era users and have onboarded around 30-35 per cent new users largely from Tier-2 cities, over the past year. This trend is mostly driven by stronger focus of platforms on vernacular content and ‘Bharat’ positioning. Overall, 60-62 per cent of the short-form video users are from Tier 2+ cities, reveals the latest report from RedSeer Consulting titled ‘Short-form video - The Rise of Made in India digital content.’

Time spent

However, the time spent on these apps has reached 55 per cent of June 2020 indicating that Indian platforms are still maturing and have more scope to improve their content quality and product experience. Comedy, dance and music are currently the most popular genres on these apps. The study shows that 75 per cent of current short-form video users will likely stick to these domestic apps and are unlikely to switch back to Chinese apps even if the ban was lifted.

“In less than a year post TikTok ban, Indian platforms have shown a strong V shaped recovery. This shows how platforms were able to design the product, execute their plans and market it aggressively in a very short period of time. This is a strong indicator of how the Indian digital ecosystem has matured in the last few years. But the job is far from done. The players still have to reach the global and cross sector benchmarks on engagement and retention, which will further grow the monetization potential for the entire ecosystem,” said Ujjwal Chadhury, Associate Partner at RedSeer Consulting.

With strong network effects, the user base is growing fast, fuelling ecosystem growth, leading to a large monetization potential for both influencers and platforms.

Elite influencers with more than 10 million followers have a monthly earning of around $20,000-40,000. Influencers with one million followers can earn up to $1000-2500 while budding creators with less than 1 million followers can earn $40-200.

According to the report, Josh leads both on influencers and users driven by strong performance in the Hindi belt and Tier 2+ cities. Moj has been a strong gainer across consumer and business metrics, when compared to the last quarter and this growth has been driven by regional language markets, especially the Southern States.

However, Roposo has shown strong performance in Tier-1 cities compared to the smaller ones. MX Takatak led in the net promoter score in the metro cities - the platform has held challenges and hashtag events similar to TikTok to gain market share.