TL;DR in a world of endless shiny things to distract marketers (Apple Vision Pro anyone?), Threads is worth investigation and experimentation, whilst not distracting significant focus from your organizations existing marketing goals. It has the hefty power of Instagram and Meta behind it and they will invest heavily in its success, and whilst paid advertising is not part of the current platform, it is coming and we are already seeing it rank for branded queries and is something we are actively tracking.
Threads, Instagram's newly-launched Twitter competitor, has quickly amassed over 100 million users in less than a week, signaling its initial success (with the rather large asterisk that they can pull from ~2bn existing Instagram users). It's a smart move to take on Twitter so directly at a time where its relevance, and accompanying controversy, is on a rather aggressive decline. However, there is nothing particularly new or original about what we are seeing so far and once the initial excitement calms down, will its levels of engagement decline?
Meta, the parent company of Instagram, envisions Threads as an extension of Instagram's strengths, aiming to create a positive and creative space for expressing ideas through text. But this raises a pertinent question: What exactly are Instagram's core strengths? With the rise of TikTok and a perceived decline in influence, Instagram has struggled to inspire both regular users and influencers alike. Its primary attribute lies in providing creators and celebrities with opportunities to monetize through sponsored content. Unfortunately, this does not provide a solid foundation for Threads' success so we fully expect it to evolve and adapt as the platform matures.
Promoting a supportive and welcoming environment that discourages negativity is a commendable objective. However, there is a potential trade-off when attempting to achieve this goal by avoiding conversations on topics deemed negative. Some of the most engaging and thought-provoking discussions often stem from the exploration of diverse perspectives. It is worth considering how many truly compelling conversations have occurred within the confines of advertiser-friendly boundaries.
It's also important to note that while paid advertising is not currently a part of the platform, brands can still benefit from creating Threads profiles now. They are already actively being indexed by Google (see image below) which means that businesses can potentially have an additional listing for branded queries. This can further enhance online visibility and push down competitors in search rankings, better securing any and all branded traffic.
As the platform continues to evolve, finding the right balance between positive engagement and open conversations will be key to ensuring its appeal to both brands and users seeking stimulating interactions.
Only time will tell and we’re only a week in…
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