Picture a text-based messaging system that allows users to participate in public conversations — but designed by Instagram instead of X (formerly Twitter). Threads, a new app created to compete with X, has emerged as a significant adversary against the billionaire-owned platform.

Many people ask, Is Threads the future of text-based social media? In this article, we will answer that question, discuss how Threads works, and look at its role in text-based social media and marketing today and in the future.

How to use Threads

Call it a war between Meta owner Mark Zuckerberg and X's Elon Musk, there's no doubt of the social media rivalry. Threads is user-friendly. To start with it, you can download the Threads app by searching “Threads, Instagram app.” After that, the steps are as follows:

  1. Log in with your Instagram account.
  2. Find your feed by using the house icon. The feed looks like other feeds on Twitter and Instagram, including those of the people you follow and other users.
  3. Try out the icons, such as the magnifying glass to search, the pen and paper icon to create a new thread, a heart that shows your activity or a human figure icon that will take you to your profile.

Here are some things you can do with Threads:

  • Create text-based posts up to 500 characters.
  • Reply to, comment, and share other people’s posts.
  • Share photos and links.
  • Share videos up to 5 minutes in length.
  • Have conversations in real time.
  • Share your Threads posts easily with Instagram, merging the two platforms.

The Role of Threads in Social Media

The long-term vision for Threads is to create what Meta calls a “fediverse,” where several platforms can mingle and connect. Think of it as a place where you can create several social media platforms in one hub.

That’s great news for content creators and content marketing. It’s exhausting creating for numerous social channels when each one has different requirements. Imagine being able to create one video and easily send it to every platform.

Threads and content marketing

As a content creator or content marketer, social media is everything. As mentioned, the ultimate goal of Threads is to have a platform where social media services connect.

Though it’s still new and there is a lot to learn, it’s not a bad idea to jump on Threads and start getting to know the platform, especially if you promote a brand. If you are already on Instagram, adding Threads will be seamless. Let’s look at how to set up Threads as a small business and what it can do for you:

  1. Download the app (Threads, Instagram app).
  2. Login to your Instagram account (preferably a business account).
  3. Create a profile or, even better, import your Instagram profile.
  4. Build up your followers by following the people you already follow on Instagram.
  5. Create your first post.

One of the great things about Threads being a part of Instagram is that the transition is easy when you first have an Instagram account. There are several benefits of Threads for content marketing: content formation, hashtags, interactive features, and themed threads.

Content formation

Content formation comes in several forms with Threads, including videos, GIF storytelling, text, and the promotion of blog posts. As a creator, try all of them and see how your audience engages. Stick with what works.

Using hashtags

Yes, hashtags are still around, and they still work well — well enough that the creators of Threads feel hashtags are a necessity. Play around with hashtags until you get the results you want. See what others are using and how their numbers look.

Threads interactive features

Threads offers the usual social media interactive features such as the following:

  • Post your own creations: videos, thoughts, GIFs, and photos.
  • Reply to comments on your posts and comment on posts shared by others.
  • Repost other people’s posts that resonate with you.
  • “Like” posts.
  • Add polls to create an interaction with followers.

Seamless Instagram integration

Instagram has been around since 2010, so if you're on social media, there’s a good chance you're already an established Instagram user. If so, the integration to Threads is simple.

Another bonus of the integration is that your blocked list will follow you from Instagram to Threads. So, that annoying person you blocked on Instagram can’t hunt you down on Threads.

This seamless integration is massive for creators and those promoting a brand. Rather than beginning the task of starting from scratch to find followers on a new site, Threads users take their followers with them.

Threads is designed with storytelling in mind

Storytelling in marketing is about allowing customers to hear your story — how you got to where you are and why the product or service you are selling is important to you. Some platforms work better for storytelling than others.

According to Meta, Threads was designed to encourage positive and productive conversations, and which is great for those seeking to promote themselves and their story. Meta has taken measures to ensure a safe and fun conversational platform. Here are some steps they have added:

  1. Control who can respond to your Threads or mention you in theirs.
  2. Block, unfollow and restrict users.
  3. Using a hidden words feature, you can ban specific words from being used in your Threads comments.
  4. Plans to eventually connect with ActivityPub. Activity Pub would allow users to transfer Threads to other services and retrieve Threads through other accounts, which is something social platforms haven’t been able to do yet.

It’s all about easy integration and simplifying creation. The back and forth of conversation will make Threads unique despite its similarities to Twitter.

It’s hard to say if Threads will soon become the new text-based social media that we won’t be able to live without. Still, with some great features and easy integration with Instagram, there’s a good chance it is here to stay and will soon become a household name.

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