Available in 100 countries already, the Threads app might look like Twitter visually, but it has its own unique appeal. Within just seven hours of launch, Threads had attracted 10 million sign-ups, then over 30 million in the first 24 hours. Brands like ASOS, Sony, and Netflix quickly established their presence with celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Gordon Ramsay doing the same.
So, what is Threads exactly?
In case you somehow didn’t glance at your phone for even moment yesterday, Threads is a new Twitter-like social media app best described as a straightforward text-based conversation app with real-time messaging. It’s predicted more than 2 billion monthly active Instagram users may import their accounts over to Threads.
Threads and Instagram share a strong connection, enabling users to keep their username and easily mass-follow accounts from Instagram. If you’re verified on Instagram, you can even transfer it to Threads at the tap of a button. Pretty cool, right?
Users can engage with threads by liking, replying, or reposting them. You can even cross-post your threads to Instagram stories or share them on other platforms as links, making this strategic move by Meta one seamless user experience.
There are still several basic features currently missing from Threads like chronological feed (remember those?), hashtags, a following feed, graph syncing, and messaging—all of which are coming soon according to Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri.
How is it different from Twitter?
First let’s address the 3,000 blue birdzilla in the room. Millions of users left Twitter in droves this year with some predicting many millions more will soon follow.
According to Adam Mosseri, this is because creators and public figures wanted a platform that was “sanely run”. Twitter’s “volatility” and “unpredictability” under Musk is what provided the opportunity for Meta to compete—especially for paid advertising.
In contrast, Chris Cox, Chief Product Officer at Meta, claims the app aims to be “safe, easy to use, reliable” and a place where creators can find a “stable home to build and grow their audiences.”
Functionally, while Twitter has always focused on news and public conversations, Threads aims to create a space for intimate connections and new types of content that, according to Instagram’s Blog, are “simply not possible on most social apps today”.
Why should brands care?
Brands face an exciting challenge of how to craft an effective strategy for this new platform. But with Threads arriving so suddenly, what are some steps brands can take to activate this channel quickly and effectively?
- Building visibility
For brands with a public profile on Threads, posts can be quickly accessed from other apps, potentially expanding your audience reach and visibility without requiring additional effort. This opens up the possibility of reaching new users and extending your brand’s visibility beyond the Threads platform itself.
- Effective storytelling
Unlike Twitter’s character limit of 280 characters, Threads allows up to 500 characters per post, providing brands with the opportunity to craft more detailed and compelling narratives. This extended character limit enhances engagement and allows for a deeper connection with the audience.
- Integration with Instagram
Threads seamlessly integrates with Instagram, allowing brands to maintain a consistent presence across platforms. If your brand already has a strong Instagram presence, transitioning to Threads can be a smooth process, ensuring a cohesive brand experience. It’s worth mentioning this integration is what’s helping keep Threads a safer space away from bots and trolls—well, for now, at least.
- Personal connection
Threads offers a personal way to connect on a personal level. It builds more intimate connections and allows for exclusive sharing among a chosen group. Brands can leverage this to create a more personalised and tailored experience for their audiences.
A few things to keep in mind
- Navigating public and private conversations
Threads allows both public conversations and private messaging among friends. Brands must find the right balance between engaging in public discussions and maintaining personalised connections. It’s important to adapt your Threads strategy accordingly and understand when and how to effectively use platform features to your advantage.
- No going back
You might want to secure your handle early, but it’s important to note that once you have Threads, there’s no turning back. Deleting your Instagram Threads account will result in the deletion of your entire Instagram account, as explicitly stated by Meta. This policy has caught many users by surprise, as they were unaware of the implications. But Mosseri has clarified, you can deactivate your account which will hide your Threads profile and content or set your profile to private.
- No hashtags
Unlike Twitter, Threads currently does not support hashtags. This means brands will need to explore alternative discovery strategies. Relying on creative and engaging creative content, strategic collaborations and harness existing brand communities can help overcome this limitation.
- Manual analytics
Threads currently offers limited analytics, making it challenging to measure the impact of content and gain in-depth insights into the audience at this stage. Brands may need to rely on other metrics and indicators to assess the success of their campaigns and adapt their strategies accordingly.
- Community management challenges
With the potential for a broader reach and diverse interactions, community management on Threads may require careful attention. Brands must monitor and moderate conversations to maintain a positive and engaging environment.
Threading it all together
Threads offers brands a new, interactive platform to maintain a consistent presence, engage audiences, differentiate themselves, and demonstrate their readiness to embrace new technologies. As the social media landscape continues to change, the introduction of Threads marks a new chapter that brands should be ready to embrace.
All that said, one big question remains—will it last? Or will it go the way of Mastodon, Bluesky, and countless others, disappearing from our phone screens just as quickly as it came?
Only time will tell, but if you ask us, Threads is offering businesses a decent opportunity to build their brands in a way that’s low-risk and effortless to implement. It’d be silly not to give it a shot—right?