Meta’s New Threads App and What It Means for Marketers

By Jeff Cracolici

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Marketing Manager & Digital Expert

When Instagram got popular, Meta purchased it. When Snapchat and TikTok became popular, Meta launched “Stories” and “Reels” across their apps. Meta is now looking to capitalize on Twitter’s teetering popularity with its newest platform, Threads.

Threads, a text-based platform very similar to Twitter, join Meta’s portfolio, which already contains Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp. While Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter head Elon Musk tease an actual cage fight, it seems round one is happening here.

In this article, we’ll briefly discuss what’s happening at Twitter, the sprint to capitalize on Twitter’s recent bad run, and what it means for advertisers.

What’s Happening with Twitter?

After Elon Musk’s purchase and privatization of the organization, many business decisions have turned users against the platform. First, there were concerns about content moderation. Second, there was a backlash against the monetization of the verification system. Most recently, Twitter capped the content users see daily to prevent “content manipulation.” While Musk stated this cap would only impact a few people, it seems to be the final nail in the coffin for many.

Like any social media app, as the number of users and time spent on the platform grows, so does the ad supply. If Twitter starts going down on both fronts, ads will get more expensive as units become scarce. However, it does not appear we are at a tipping point yet.

Filling the Growing Void

Facebook, which reported its first cases of user decline in Q4 of 2021, hopes to get these users back on the Threads platform. However, they have some hurdles to overcome.

To create a Threads account, you must have an Instagram account already. It’s not known if users will be able to make independent accounts in the future, but those who are anti-Meta will probably not be jumping to join when there’s that barrier involved to participate. Additionally, there is growing competition.

Mastodon, a nonprofit Twitter competitor, has grown its users by over 300% between November 2022 and March 2023. Platforms like Spill, Post, BlueSky (created by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey), and Truth Social offer similar platforms.

It’s anyone’s guess where users will ultimately flock and when the merger and acquisitions of each other will begin. It looks like Threads is a big hit in its initial days. Over 30 million people signed up in the first 24 hours. It’s being projected that the new platform will hit 100 million users this week (if it hasn’t happened already). For reference, Search Engine Journal put together these stats:

  • ChatGPT reached 100 million users in two months.
  • TikTok reached 100 million users in nine months.
  • Instagram reached 100 million users in two and a half years.

What Threads Means for Advertisers

Over the last few years, Facebook’s CPMs have been rising. Despite adding new ad types across their various platforms and features to try and create more supply to stabilize the CPMs, we find the Newsfeed and Stories ads across Facebook and Instagram drive the most engagement and clicks. As you can imagine, competition is heavy for those placements.

While Threads does not contain ads yet, it’s only a matter of time before Meta monetizes its new toy. Considering the layout and what Meta has done with ad placements on Instagram and Facebook, Threads ads will undoubtedly be a platform that advertisers will have to test (especially if you found success on Instagram in the past). Assuming advertisers can onboard the customers and the process is similar to running ads on Facebook and Instagram, adding new, high-quality ad units will help keep CPMs stable across Meta platforms for the foreseeable future.

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Published on Jul. 10, 2023, Last Updated on Jul. 10, 2023