Marketers Contemplate Threads’ Diminishing Momentum in the Digital Landscape

Marketers Contemplate Threads' Diminishing Momentum in the Digital Landscape

In the ever-evolving realm of social media, Threads emerged with a bang, captivating over 100 million users within its debut week, setting a record as the fastest-adopted platform. It appeared to be a promising contender in the race to rival Twitter (now known as X). Yet, as the platform hits its two-month mark, it’s lost half of its user base, prompting questions about its sustainability amidst the digital landscape, alongside the likes of Clubhouse, Vine, and BeReal.

Marketers, navigating the fragmented social media landscape, are reevaluating Threads’ relevance. Jayne O’Brien, Head of Marketing, Product, and Loyalty at JetBlue, stressed the need for clarity in targeting audiences and engaging them effectively. She noted, “We will test new things. However, if we fail to observe the desired impact, we will redirect our attention to the areas we believe will yield the greatest results.

This adaptive approach is reflected across the marketing landscape. Athleta, for instance, has seen a decline in engagement on Threads and is considering scaling back its investments to avoid distractions. Julia Leach, Athleta’s Chief Creative Officer, expressed this sentiment.

Maybelline, too, has yet to fully commit to a Threads strategy but remains open to exploration as long as engagement persists, according to Fernando Febres, VP of Marketing for Maybelline U.S.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged Threads’ declining user base and pledged new features to reignite interest. However, Meta did not provide further details when approached by Digiday for comment.

To provide context, a recent study by technology review platform Capterra found that 69% of marketers explored alternatives to Twitter, such as Threads, Bluesky, and Mastodon. Yet, 35% of marketers who initially reduced spending on X following Elon Musk’s takeover have since returned to their previous levels of investment.

When Threads, positioned as Meta’s response to X’s decline, launched in July, it captured marketers’ attention as a potential X replacement. The allure of text-based social media and unconventional content strategies was undeniable. But as the user base dwindles, agencies report growing uncertainty among clients about Threads’ role.

Threads, though not yet offering advertising opportunities, faces competition from Meta’s Facebook and Instagram, which continue to command the lion’s share of client ad spend and interest.

Tyler Moore, Chief Strategy Officer at The Escape Pod ad agency, emphasized the need to adapt to Threads’ evolving nature, stating, “We haven’t abandoned the platform as we know it’s still being defined by users and Facebook.”

While some marketers persist on Threads, engaging users with generic questions and memes, the platform’s diminishing user functions and absence of ad tools have left many undecided about committing more resources to this Meta-owned platform.

Pepsi’s CMO Todd Kaplan summed it up, saying, “As long as the consumers are there and they’re wanting to engage in the right authentic way on those platforms, we’ll be there.”

In today’s fragmented social media landscape, with new platforms emerging regularly, marketers face an ongoing challenge. As Ned Brown, Chief Creative Officer at Bader Rutter ad agency, noted, “Today, it’s Threads. On one day, it’s Thimbles, and on the next day, it’s Quills. And this cycle will persist. In the face of the constantly shifting social media landscape, marketers must maintain agility, honing in on the enduring factors that truly matter.

Marketers Contemplate Threads’ Diminishing Momentum in the Digital Landscape

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