Instagram’s Threads launched to the world on 5 July 2023. The social media site was bid as Instagram’s answer to X (formerly Twitter), and its unveiling couldn’t have come at a more opportune time.
Elon Musk’s takeover and subsequent rebrand of Twitter has left the platform in a state of disarray. Many users are frustrated over Musk’s contentious leadership style. Most agree that the Twitter owner’s impulsive decision to replace the site’s iconic blue bird logo with an ‘X’ is an important lesson in ‘how not to rebrand a business’.
With this in mind, it seemed the launch of Threads was the perfect opportunity for Instagram to capture the market and convince disgruntled Twitter users to make the switch. And, with the app reporting 49 million daily active users on July 7th, it appeared all was going to plan.
Unfortunately, it seems the initial hype wasn’t built to last. At the end of July, just weeks after launch, Threads’ user base was down 82% to just 8 million daily active users. We previously believed Threads would be an exciting space for designers and developers to share their work and insights. Now, this prediction seems uncertain.
A probable reason for Threads’ downfall is its lack of popular features, such as the ability to send direct messages. Many users are frustrated over Threads’ lack of basic functionality. Perhaps this is an indication that Threads launched earlier than intended — likely as a ploy to capitalize on the problems at Twitter.
Despite the startling decline in popularity, Threads owner Mark Zuckerberg remains optimistic, stating that the community is “on the trajectory” and that he still expects “to build a vibrant long-term app”.
Zuckerberg intends to add new features to improve the app’s functionality over time. He also recently stated he wanted to find new ways to hook people into Threads. What these ‘hooks’ will be, we cannot predict. But, if Musk’s trajectory of poor decision-making continues, it shouldn’t take much bait for Threads to catch the public’s attention once again.
Robert is an experienced marketing professional with extensive experience working with brands to refine go-to-market plans, SEO campaigns, and content marketing strategies. A committed writer with a keen eye on the latest developments, Robert specialises in producing content across all things tech and marketing.