Threads: To Join or Not to Join?

The latest social media entrant causing waves is Meta’s Threads. Launched in early July, Threads is a smartphone-exclusive microblogging app that Meta has positioned as Twitter’s competitor. 

The app’s rapid growth is hard to ignore. Within its first five days, over 100 million users downloaded the app to check out this new social media platform. The question on many businesses’ minds is whether to jump on the Threads bandwagon. So let’s take a closer look.

What is Threads?

Essentially, Threads is a streamlined version of Twitter. It’s an app that allows users to create threads of comments in posts, complete with images and videos. However, Threads lacks Twitter’s hashtag feature, advertising, direct messaging and edit functionality. It also uses an algorithm-driven feed similar to Instagram, which means that posts don’t appear in chronological order, but in the order Threads thinks you’ll be interested in.

Main Features 

  • Posts up to 500 characters long
  • Video posts up to five minutes long, as well as links and photos
  • Accessibility features like screen-reader support and alt text
  • Access to Instagram’s existing user safety controls like unfollowing, blocking, restricting and reporting profiles
  • A feed with posts from followed accounts and recommended content

Instagram Integration 

Threads’ standout feature is its integration with Instagram. If your business already has an active Instagram account, incorporating Threads can be relatively straightforward. The Threads app can be linked with your Instagram credentials, allowing you to carry over settings, followers and preferences. It’s important to note, however, that creating a Threads account isn’t currently reversible without affecting your Instagram account. Threads’ connection to Instagram means deleting both accounts to backtrack. Although Threads does offer temporary deactivation, Meta is reportedly addressing this issue.

Pros and Cons 

If you already use social media for a lot of your marketing needs, adopting Threads might be an obvious choice. While people are still figuring out this new tool, it could be another potential channel for client engagement, managing existing relationships and attracting new. Consider the significance of your social media presence, the time it consumes, and how Threads can complement your existing efforts. 

Running social media accounts can be time intensive. Before jumping in, assess the time required for content management. If your marketing team uses scheduling and planning software such as Hootsuite or Loomly, it’s also important to note that Threads currently isn’t available on those platforms. So all posts currently need to be made at the time of post, from a phone. There’s no desktop version of Threads, but Meta has mentioned they’re looking into making things simpler for scheduling.

Timing is Everything 

While some businesses have already embraced Threads, others are in a wait-and-watch mode. For businesses in the cautious category, assigning a team member to set up a personal Threads account for research purposes can be valuable. Given Threads’ novelty, tracking peers and competitors’ actions on this platform can provide insights into its potential impact. Early adoption might grant a lead in building a following, but the current initial chaos could be a drawback. Timing your entry and learning from others’ experiences might prove advantageous.

The decision to embrace Threads is nuanced. There’s no definitive answer. It could be the perfect platform for succinct thoughts or opinions if you’ve been seeking a Twitter alternative. However, as Threads evolves, later adoption could be equally fruitful. Evaluate your business’s unique circumstances, potential value addition and willingness to experiment before diving into this new platform. 

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