It is fair to say that Threads, the social media app launched by Meta, has taken the world by storm – surpassing the 100 million user mark in less than five days. Its instant success has captured the attention of users and industry experts alike.
Threads made its debut on the Apple and Android app stores across 100 countries, including the UK, and quickly garnered an impressive user base of 10 million within the first seven hours of its launch. This remarkable achievement shattered the previous record held by Open AI’s ChatGPT app. Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta, expressed his astonishment at the lightning-fast milestone, emphasising the platform’s immense potential.
There is no doubt that a key factor behind Threads’ rapid growth is its strong affiliation with Instagram, which boasts a staggering user base of 1 billion. Leveraging the popularity and reach of its sister platform has been crucial to this early success. The symbiotic relationship with Instagram positions Threads as a formidable competitor in the social media arena and competitors are rightly watching closely.
Despite this early success, Threads has not been without its share of challenges over the last few days. It currently faces obstacles in expanding to mainland Europe due to concerns surrounding compliance with EU data privacy legislation. Additionally, Twitter, feeling the heat of competition, has threatened legal action against Meta, alleging the misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information. Meta has refuted these claims, setting the stage for a potential legal showdown. Below is a quick comparison of the difference between what Threads and Twitter are offering:
It is worth noting, of course, that if you pay for that all-important blue tick, Twitter offers verification, editing, and longer posts and video. However, it is exactly this that has led many people to move away from the platform owned by Elon Musk. While it is optional, it is a paid monthly subscription which has turned many people away from the platform.
Implications for Businesses and Marketers
The rise of Threads brings new opportunities and considerations for businesses and marketers. Early adopters of this platform stand to benefit from its growing user base, providing both organic reach and potential future paid advertising options. With Threads’ expanding audience, businesses can tap into a fresh market and engage with users who are seeking a novel social media experience. One notable example is Microsoft, which has established a presence on Threads, signalling its potential as a platform for corporate engagement. Their first message on the platform was to ask Bing Chat, their very own Chatbot, what their first post should be.
Let’s not get carried away
This rising social media platform is currently garnering attention and inviting comparisons to previous challengers like Google+. The question arises: Will Threads follow the path of flameout that Google+ experienced, or will it maintain its impressive trajectory? Google+ was once dubbed the “Facebook Killer,” thrust into the hands of a vast user base reliant on Google’s search and other products. Initial signs, much like Threads, were promising, with 90 million users within a year. However, by 2018, Google+ found itself on the rubbish heap alongside Google Buzz, the failed platform it aimed to replace in 2011.
The lessons from Google+’s downfall should not be overlooked by Meta. Despite having an enormous audience at its disposal and a strong start, Google+ ultimately failed to dethrone Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as users continued to flock to these established platforms. Meta would be wise to heed these failings and ensure that Threads evolves differently
As always, we advocate creative play and interaction. However, we also advise cautiousness. After all, that is what we are all about. However, just like many before it, there’s a possibility that Threads might not live up to expectations from a B2B perspective. It is also worth noting that as of now, paid advertising opportunities and precise B2B targeting is not possible.
While we are fully acknowledging the possibilities, we are not promoting hasty leaps onto the bandwagon just yet. Instead, let’s carefully assess the evolving situation and strike when the time is right. There is no denying that Threads has made a strong start. Maybe, just maybe, the social media landscape is primed for an exciting shakeup.