In the ever-evolving world of social media, brands are constantly seeking new avenues to connect with their audience and expand their reach. One platform that has recently gained significant attention – to the tune of more than 100 million people – is Threads by Meta.
In this article, we will share what Threads is, how it’s different from other social platforms, what our team likes and dislikes about the platform, and provide actionable recommendations for how brands can effectively leverage this platform – or not. Let’s dive in!
1. What is Threads?
Threads, developed by Meta’s Instagram team, is a text-based conversation app that functions as a separate platform, but one that is deeply integrated with Instagram. It allows users to publish short posts or updates of up to 500 characters, accompanied by photos, videos, and links. With seamless synchronization between Threads and Instagram, users can easily share their Threads posts on their Instagram stories or as links on other platforms.
The app provides a personalized feed consisting of posts from accounts followed on both Instagram and Threads, alongside recommendations for undiscovered content. Some have called Threads a competitor to Twitter, but there are some key differences.
2. How is Threads Different?
Threads differentiates itself from other social media platforms in a few ways. Here’s what we find different:
- Its focus on text-based conversations distinguishes it from visually-oriented platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
The emphasis is on short, concise posts fostering more meaningful interactions and encourages users to engage in real-time conversations.
- Threads offers a more intimate and private user-experience compared to other platforms.
By linking to users’ Instagram accounts, it retains the existing follower base and verification status, creating a sense of familiarity and trust. Additionally, the privacy settings allow users to control who can view and interact with their posts, providing a safe space for genuine connections.
- Its accessibility is (so far) limited.
At the time of this post’s publishing, Threads has geographical limitations and can only be accessed on a mobile device.
3. What We Like About Threads
Threads brings several notable advantages to the table, making it an attractive platform for brands to explore. Here’s what we like:
- Seamless Integration with Instagram
The integration between Threads and Instagram allows brands to extend their reach and engage with their existing Instagram followers effortlessly. By leveraging Threads, brands can maintain a consistent presence across both platforms, maximizing their visibility and ensuring cohesive brand messaging.
- Real-time Conversations
The text-based nature of Threads fosters real-time conversations, enabling brands to connect with their audience on a more personal level. This direct and immediate interaction facilitates the exchange of ideas, feedback, and customer support, ultimately strengthening brand-consumer relationships.
- Curated Feed and Recommendations
Threads provides users with a personalized feed that combines content from both Instagram and Threads, along with recommendations for undiscovered accounts. For brands, this means increased visibility and the potential to reach new audiences who may not be following them on Instagram. The curated feed also enhances the user experience by delivering relevant and engaging content.
4. Things to Consider About Threads
While Threads offers unique features and benefits, it also has some limitations. Understanding these limitations will help brands make informed decisions about incorporating Threads into their social media strategy. Here’s what you should consider:
- An Instagram Account is Required First
While Threads is a separate app that does require downloading, its close integration with Instagram requires that users first have an Instagram account before they create a Threads account. If a brand does not currently have a presence on Instagram, this could make it difficult to onboard and manage two new social media platforms at once.
- If You Delete Your Threads, You Delete Your Instagram
This is an important detail buried in the fine print agreed to when signing up for Threads. If you create a Threads account, it’s important to realize that the close integration between Threads and Instagram means that if you ever delete your Threads, it will delete your associated Instagram account as well.
Pro tip: If you create a Threads account and then want to get rid of it, select the deactivate option instead. Deactivating will preserve your associated Instagram, but remove your Threads presence.
- Advanced Analytics are Lacking
Currently, Threads does not offer robust analytics and insights for brands to track their performance and measure the effectiveness of their campaigns. Brands relying heavily on data-driven decision-making may find this limitation restrictive and may need to supplement their analysis with external tools.
- Monetization Opportunities are Limited
As of now, advertising options on Threads are not a priority for Meta. While this may change in the future, brands should be aware that the platform’s primary focus is on providing a user-friendly and engaging experience, rather than monetization opportunities.
5. Who Should Use Threads
Threads presents unique opportunities for certain types of brands and businesses. Here is who we think might benefit:
- Niche Brands and Influencers
For brands operating in niche markets or catering to a specific target audience, Threads offers a focused and engaged user base. By leveraging the platform’s text-based conversations, these brands can foster meaningful connections with their audience and establish themselves as thought leaders within their niche.
- Personal Brands and Content Creators
Threads provides an avenue for personal brands and content creators to share updates, insights, and behind-the-scenes content with their audience. The platform’s emphasis on text-based conversations encourages authentic and meaningful interactions, nurturing a loyal and engaged following. We see Threads as a great platform for a content creator to interact in a more intimate way with their followers, allowing them to better see the person behind the content (and brand).
- Brands looking for an alternative to Twitter
Joining Threads could be a great opportunity to expand brand reach if you haven’t seen success on Twitter or never joined. Although, the functionality of Threads is similar to that of Twitter, so we recommend that brands don’t need to be present on both channels, for now.
6. Our Recommendations on How to Use Threads Today
Considering the potential risks and rewards of using Threads, here are our actionable recommendations for brands looking to utilize this platform effectively:
- Know Your Why
Before diving into Threads, evaluate your why. Why do you want to be on a new social media platform, specifically this one? What value might it bring to your brand? Clarity in this area will make it an easier decision to join (or not).
- Tailor Your Content
Craft content specifically for Threads that aligns with the platform’s text-based nature. If your content on other platforms is more “buttoned-up”, Threads could be a good place to experiment with sharing less scripted, more conversational content.
- Embrace Real-time Engagement
Leverage Threads’ real-time conversation feature to engage with your audience promptly. Monitor conversations, respond to queries, and participate actively in discussions related to your brand or industry. By being responsive and approachable, you can foster a sense of community and build brand loyalty.
- Monitor and Adapt
Regularly monitor your Threads performance, user feedback, and in-app updates to better adapt your content strategy based on insights gained from user interactions.
The Final Note
Threads by Meta offers a unique platform for brands to connect with their audience through text-based conversations. However, it’s still too early to predict how successful the platform will be long-term. The ASC team is in “testing” mode on Threads, and we will continue to refine our recommendations based on our findings.
As with any social platform, just because it exists does not mean your brand needs to be present on it. Know your current and prospective audiences. Understand where they are and where they want to hear from you. Then meet them there.