Meta's Thread is hanging by a thread, literally!

Threads experienced a 70% drop in daily active users and lower engagement just weeks after launch due to lack of features compared to Twitter. However, with Meta's backing, Threads has potential to gain users by launching new features, improving engagement and retention.

Mudassir Mustafa
September 17, 2023

Hello, there!

Up until a few weeks back, the internet was full of Zuck vs Elon debate as Meta’s new social media platform “Threads” made its way to over 100 million devices within a week of its launch, while the daily active user count touched the 49 million mark. Needless to say, it turned out to be a roaring success and literally the talk of the town.

Hanging by a 'Thread' – Quite Literally

Two weeks after its launch, the social media giant is now grappling with a concerning reality - a significant drop in user engagement. The platform, designed as a competitor to Twitter, is experiencing a lower user engagement rate, with daily active users reducing to a mere 13 million—a drastic 70% decrease from just two weeks ago.

Not only this, but time spent on Threads has also witnessed a significant drop to 4 minutes from 10 minutes in the last week. It was 20 minutes a couple of weeks ago.

So, what led to the downfall of Threads and what is Meta doing to revive the user interest? Let’s figure it out together!

A "Copy" of Twitter

Threads isn't the first time Mark Zuckerberg has "copied" an already successful idea. The Facebook co-founder has established a substantial and well-documented record of emulating others' ideas, ranging from taking an idea from Snapchat's stories feature to cloning TikTok through Instagram Reels.

Elon Musk didn't shy away from sharing his amusement over this copy-paste scenario as he reacted with a 😂 smiley in response to this tweet:

What Led to the Drop in User Engagement on Threads?

Experts believe that the major reason for the fall in engagement is the lack of interesting features in Threads, which its counterpart Twitter boasts of.

For example, you can’t send a personal message to anyone and then there’s no possibility to remain anonymous as the Threads account is directly connected to Instagram.

An article by Mashable also highlights the features that are not part of Threads yet. These include a chronological feed, hashtags, trending topics, emoji, and editable alt text.

Apart from the lack of features, the layout of Threads is cited as another contributing factor to its downward spiral as it looks very similar to Twitter.

What Does This Say for Thread’s Future?

The shift in user behavior highlights the inherent challenges that emerging platforms encounter in sustaining interest beyond their initial novelty. For Threads, this journey proves to be an uphill battle, as it seeks to establish itself as an indispensable component of users' social media routines—a crucial step for Meta to eventually transform its new app into a thriving advertising platform.

Is the Party Over for Threads?

Certainly, not. This drop doesn’t mean it’s all done and dusted for Threads.

Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of the platform, believes Threads is performing better than he had expected. He took to his social media and said,

I'm very optimistic about how the Threads community is coming together. “Early growth was off the charts, but more importantly 10s of millions of people now come back daily. That's way ahead of what we expected. The focus for the rest of the year is improving the basics and retention… We've run this playbook many times (FB, IG, Stories, Reels, etc.) and I'm confident Threads is on a good path too.

To conclude, backed by Meta, Threads is not yet to be dismissed. The platform has potential and with the launch of new features, it can gain user interest, improve its engagement rate, and retention. The backing by Instagram is its biggest strength that can help it gain more footing. However, it faces tough competition ahead due to the rebranding of Twitter.

What am I reading these days?

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz

My Favorite quote from the book

The world is full of bankrupt companies with world-class cultures. Culture does not make a company.

Do you agree with Ben here?Hello, there!

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