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  • Writer's pictureChandler Lyles

What Is Threads and How Should Your Business Use It


threads app launch

Meta has done it again. They’ve stolen a popular feature from another social media platform. This time they launched a whole new social media platform, Threads, instead of just adding it in as a new feature.


How is it going? Better than Mark Zuckerberg expected. The app has gained 100 million sign-ups in its first five days.


The vibe on threads has been interesting. Early adopters hit the platform in the first 12 hours and immediately started posting. Clare Duffy at CNN pointed out that it felt like the first day of school and she’s right.


What is Threads?

Threads is a social media platform that is owned by Meta. The platform is connected to a user's Instagram account. That connection has been the catalyst for users' adoption of Threads.


Your Instagram username is the same as on Threads. Once you sign up, you’re given the option to follow people that you already follow on Instagram. You can even share posts directly from Threads to your Instagram account as a post or story.


There are two reasons that Threads has reached 100 million users so quickly:

  1. Twitter has been a dumpster fire for years. Yes, even before Elon Musk purchased Twitter for $44 billion.

  2. Instagram already has 2 billion monthly active users (MAU). A frictionless signup process with Threads was a great idea.

agency probs threads meme
Photo: @agencyprobs on Instagram

Why is Threads Important?

Threads is another channel for Meta to sell ads on. That is the only reason Zuckerberg has led his team into the live conversation social media space.


Since Elon took over Twitter, their U.S. ad sales alone are down 59%. Meta only has so much real estate to sell ads on. That’s why you’ve seen them copy feature after feature. They're even attempting to build a whole new world where they control every ad in the Metaverse.


Instagram has been scrambling to figure out how to increase eyeballs on their platform since TikTok took the hearts of the scrolling public in the spring of 2020. Threads seem to be their next solution.


Will Threads Kill Twitter?

There is rarely a single cause behind any business’s failure. Twitter was in trouble from a daily user time spent on platform perspective well before Elon made his purchase.


The problem now is that Elon overpaid for Twitter. This has created an immediate need for cash from the app, which led Elon to introduce massive change after massive change. None of which have made users happy.


This created a hole in the market. You can’t have real-time conversations on other social networks like you can on Twitter. I would speculate that Meta has been working on Threads since Elon made his purchase, if not before.


So, here we are in a world where Twitter is vulnerable and Threads seems to be a solid replacement. I think Twitter is in real trouble.


Do I think that Threads will kill Twitter? No. Twitter is still too large with too much brand nostalgia to disappear in the next 6 months.


What is more likely to happen is that Elon's financial pressures will continue to increase. This increased pressure will ultimately force him to take one of the most expensive haircuts in history and sell Twitter.


My way too early prediction is that Apple would make the acquisition. They’ve invested serious cash with the MLS in the U.S. and want more live sports on their AppleTV network.


How Should Your Business Use Threads?

The first question you should ask your marketing team is, “Do we have an overall marketing strategy?” The next question should be, “Are we executing on this strategy at the highest level we possibly can?”


If the answer to those two questions is “No” then ask your team if this is just a shiny fun object we want to chase instead of doing the work we actually know will deliver results.


(In fairness, I got distracted by Threads while writing this article and had to post something just because it was an easier hit of dopamine than writing this in-depth article.)


If the answer to those two questions is “Yes” then keep reading.


We’re still in the early days of Threads. Any internet guru that tells you they have the secret to “blow up your brand on Threads in 30 days” is an idiot. Instead of looking for a blueprint, plan, or strategy, you should focus on the basics. Blocking and tackling are how you win Super Bowls in social media marketing.


The High Beam Marketing Social Media Flywheel

High Beam Marketing Social Media Marketing Flywheel

Input

You should spend at least 15 minutes every day on Threads.


Why? This gets you into the spirit of the platform. You get to see what content is getting posted, how it's phrased, and how much interaction it's getting. Use this time to fine-tune your gut for the plan you’re going to create in the next step.


Plan

Benjamin Franklin famously said, “By failing to plan, you are preparing to fail.” You need to outline a clear goal for your business on Threads and then make a clear plan on how to achieve that goal.


My recommendation for everyone on Threads right now is to just have a goal to learn as much as possible. How can you do that most effectively? Post content consistently.


Output

Commit to posting at least one Thread a day. That post should line up with your overall social media content strategy. If you do that for 90 days straight, you’ll have plenty of data about what works and what doesn’t.


Data

Currently, we aren’t being given a ton of data from Threads. What we know is that engagement (Likes, Comments, Shares, etc) are a downstream metric for the almighty impression. I would focus on this engagement number as your A-1 key performance indicator (KPI). The total number of followers your account has should be your A-2 metric.


Community

We go further when we go with others. Who do you have in your circle of influence that is also posting content on Threads? Once you agree to collaborate with at least one other person, you’re good to go. Every person you add to the community gives you another opportunity to learn from their successes and failures. I recommend keeping this group the size that a large pizza could feed.


High Beam Marketing Consulting

Do you need help with your social media marketing? High Beam Marketing consulting is a great option for leaders looking to surround themselves with the right marketing people. Consulting with us gets you access to a decade's worth of experience in social media marketing.



Where Do We Go From Here?

New social media apps are a lot of fun. They are an opportunity to do something different than the day-to-day grind most social media marketers get stuck in. Unfortunately, anything new is vulnerable to disappearing. Company size isn't a factor in whether or not a platform survives. Does anyone else remember Google+?


Use Threads for what it is right now. Don't worry so much about being first or being right with your predictions. Instead, do what we teach all of our clients to do, react to the data you have.


Right now there are over 100 million active users on Threads. That means you should probably have a presence there and you should be focused on building brand awareness. Follow the High Beam Marketing Social Media Flywheel and you'll get exactly where you want to go.

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