How TikTok’s For You page changed everything for the use of AI

TikTok’s native AI has made it the most powerful platform in social media.

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How TikTok’s For You page changed everything for the use of AI


The Future. TikTok’s native AI has made it the most powerful platform in social media. Now, startups are taking the tenets of the app’s “For You” page to create products that are all about knowing their customers’ wants before they even do. That could lead to a shopping platform that only surfaces items it knows you’ll purchase or a dating app that connects you with one match a day that it has deemed perfect for you. Essentially, AI will do all the thinking.

Curation compulsion

In case you haven’t noticed, every social platform is slowly but surely transforming into TikTok. Index Ventures partner Rex Woodbury breaks down what’s fueling that adoption.

  • The platform’s For You page is AI in action, serving users videos that seem to magically know what they want to watch.
  • That’s because the For You page is built for maximum popularity. Woodbury writes, “each posted video is pushed to an initial set of viewers, then evaluated based on how those viewers respond to it.”
  • And if viewers watch for a long time, like the video, and comment on it, “the video is pushed to even more viewers, and the cycle continues.”

The section is programmed to be personally addictive… which, by and large, is exactly what we want from the app.

Rely on AI

The TikTok-ization is moving past social media and turning other industries onto the power of AI. Woodbury explores how fashion retailer SHEIN is the best example of that sea change.

  • SHEIN “combs competitor’s websites and Google Trends to figure out what’s in style, then creates designs quickly, forecasts demand, and adjusts inventory in real-time.”
  • And it does that fast, adding 8,000 new items to its site every day — a significant increase over competitor Zara’s 500 per week.
  • The platform also anticipates what you’ll want to buy and offers recommendations based on those pieces.

That personalization has made SHEIN the third most valuable startup in the world, led to 100% growth every year for eight years straight, and catapulted its app to the top of the App Store’s and Google Play Store’s shopping app sections.

Every industry will soon have its own TikTok.

David Vendrell

Born and raised a stone’s-throw away from the Everglades, David left the Florida swamp for the California desert. Over-caffeinated, he stares at his computer too long either writing the TFP newsletter or screenplays. He is repped by Anonymous Content.


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