“Making videos is not a hobby anymore, it has become a profession, and musical.ly is a great platform to explore,” 26-year-old, Disha Madan, a social media celebrity says about the latest social media fad.
Launched in 2014, musical.ly’s popularity has been increasing ever since. The app allows users to create videos of their choice using various filters and speed options. It hasn’t even been a year since musical.ly was launched in India and it already has more than 15 million registered users, including Bollywood celebrities Shraddha Kapoor, Tiger Shroff, Shahid Kapoor and Disha Patani. Even famous comedians Kanan Gill, Mallika Dua, Bharti and YouTube star, Bhuvan Bam use the platform quite actively.
What is it about Musical.ly that it makes it so popular?
Yuvraj Dewan, a 22-year-old user says, “musical.ly is the best thing that happened to me. I love the popularity and the fact that so many people are inspired by me.” Yuvraj has over 145k fans and he calls them his ‘muser family’.
Disha Madan, the first Indian to hit 1 million followers on musical.ly, now has over 2.6 million fans and says that it is a great platform to reach a wider audience. “As compared to other platforms, musical.ly has zero limitations in terms of timings and categories. You can be creative, innovative and express yourself in a number of ways.”
From lip-syncing, vines, to dancing, stand-up comedy, and makeup videos, musical.ly has a huge pool of talent.
Musical.ly has over 200 million users worldwide, with more than 250k videos being uploaded every day from India. Keeping the short attention span of the viewers in mind, most videos on musical.ly are around 15 seconds to 1 minute. Users mainly record themselves lip-syncing and dancing to popular songs, create their own compositions or do duets with their friends.
The app allows users to create and share videos with their friends and also post on other social media platforms.
Vitasta Bhat, another musical.ly user, who has over 1.4 million fans, said that she started using musical.ly in early 2016 just for fun. “I was not active at first but got a boost when people started appreciating my videos on Instagram. It was in early 2017 when I became a regular and I’ve never stopped since then.”
Vitasta and Disha are not just making videos for fun, but are also earning money. Disha says that making videos for Musical.ly and doing paid promotions for brands give her a regular income and not just pocket money.
Talking about competition, Yuvraj says, “yes, there’s a lot of competition, but the biggest competition you have is yourself.”
On the other hand, Vitasta says, “there’s no competition unless you consider it to be one. It’s a community and everyone is a friend.”
Disha says that musical.ly gives you complete freedom and even encourages musers to meet and interact with each other.
Is Musical.ly the new YouTube?
It appears that Musical.ly is to the Gen Z what YouTube was to the Gen Y.
Even though the most common age group on Musical.ly is 12-25, it is not limited to that. Disha Madan, whose musical.ly videos about Karwan helped increase the tourism, says, “we do not understand the power of social media. It is not limited to an age group anymore.”
Most influencers, including Disha Madan, feel that musical.ly is like a stepping stone for vloggers. Once you have made the following base on musical.ly, it gets easier to translate it into other platforms like YouTube and Instagram. “I am trying to popularise my YouTube channel, and that will be different from what I do on musical.ly”, she says.
“YouTube and musical.ly are two different social media platforms used for different purposes. I will surely come on YouTube and increase my follower base very shortly,” Yuvraj says.
Musical.ly might not replace YouTube, but it has surely become a great medium for future vloggers to explore.