In just five days, Meta’s Threads app has become the fastest-growing app in history, with 100 million users, and counting. Threads is basically a Twitter clone, and because it’s connected to a user’s Instagram account, so far both brands and people alike have been posting content that pretty much resembles what they’d post on Twitter and Insta. Let’s take a closer look at Threads by answering some commonly asked questions brands might have about it.
What exactly is Threads, and why does it exist?
As noted, Threads gives its user base a place to post the same kind of rapid-fire posts that they share on Twitter and Instagram. There is a 500-character limit for posting. Users can respond to each other’s posts, and they can link to photos, video, and external URLs as with Twitter. It’s one of a handful of Twitter rivals, including Bluesky and Mastadon, that have emerged to challenge Twitter’s long-established lead as a micro-blogging platform.
Interest in Threads has intensified in light of Twitter’s ongoing service problems and a reported rise in hate speech on Twitter, which has made the app less appealing for both brands and everyday users. Twitter has 354 million users – which is a sizable audience, making it tempting for a rival to create its own similar platform. But Twitter is a firmly ensconced platform. It would take someone with a lot of clout to rival the company. Meta has that kind of clout.
How do you sign up for Threads?
You need to have an Instagram account to sign up. From there, you download the app from your iOS or Android device.
Wait – I have to have an Instgram account to sign up for Threads? What are the implications of Threads being connected to Instagram?
Yes, you need to be on Instagram to be on Threads. Technically, Threads is in fact a stand-alone social network with its own app, but you need Instagram to sign up for it.
When you sign up for Threads, you can choose to auto-follow all of the accounts you follow on Instagram. This means that if your Instagram followers also sign up for Threads, they will automatically start following you back.
This is a great way to grow your Threads following quickly. However, it’s important to note that not everyone who auto-follows you will be interested in your content. So, it’s still important to post high-quality content and engage with your followers.
But what if you don’t want to be on Threads anymore? Well, if you decide you don’t like Threads, you cannot delete your Threads account unless you also delete your Instagram account.
If you violate Threads’s community guidelines and get your Threads account banned, your Instagram account will also be banned. To change your Threads username, you must also change your Instagram username.
How did Threads get so big so fast?
It’s all about the Instagram integration. Threads has instant access to Instagram’s 2.35 billion monthly active users. Meta made it easy for anyone to sign up through Instagram – and that’s not all. Meta also made it easy to import your Instagram profile. The auto-follow button, which allows your new Threads account to follow every account you follow on Instagram, created an instant Threads following for anyone on Instagram.
What kind of content should I post on Threads?
For now, businesses and people are posting the same kind of content that they post on Twitter and Instagram. So, what’s good for those platforms will be just right for Threads. Remember, your initial following comes from your Instagram audience – so it makes sense to be as visual as you can.
Social Media Manager Bri Reynolds suggests that you go grab your top-performing evergreen tweets, post one or a few as your initial Thread content. You’ve already proven they’re successful elsewhere.
Down the road, as Threads evolves, brands might develop a separate content strategy for Threads. But for now, Threads has quickly become a platform for cross-posting.
What caveats should I be aware of?
As noted above, if you want to delete your Threads, you need to delete your Insta.
Threads lacks a lot of functionality that users have become accustomed to on other platforms, including a lack of hash tagging and direct messaging capacity. There is no desktop version, and there is no chronological feed (although Instagram says a chronological feed will be coming soon).
Threads collects the same data as its parent company. This includes users’ physical addresses, health and fitness data, and sensitive information such as biometric and ethnic data. Twitter, on the other hand, does not collect these types of data.
Being present on Threads could become burdensome to your social media team. There is a tremendous amount of pressure for brands to experiment there. Make sure you have the bandwidth.
Is advertising coming to Threads?
Not yet. But as reported in Advertising Age, Meta is talking with ad agencies and brands about how the platform will work and has shared a presentation with several agencies outlining how Threads could potentially become the new Twitter. Meta has told advertisers that it will ensure brand safety by applying Instagram’s own community guidelines. If you want to get an early take on how Threads advertising will work, Instagram’s own ad units are a good place to start given the integration of the two apps.
Here are some specific examples of how Threads advertising may work (based on the Instagram experience):
- Advertisers may be able to target their ads to users based on their interests, location, or demographics.
- Ads may be displayed in the form of sponsored posts, promoted stories, or promoted video.
- Ads may be placed alongside organic content in the Threads feed.
It is still too early to say exactly how Threads advertising will work, but one thing is certain: ads will come to Threads.
Contact True Interactive
At True Interactive, we’re following the rise of Threads closely. To succeed in the ever-changing world of online advertising, contact True Interactive. Read about some of our client work here, and learn about our social media services here.
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