Threads - Preparing for Paid

July 19, 2023 • Kerri-ann McGinty, EVP, Media

Threads has launched without advertising opportunities, for now, to focus on building consumer value without compromising the experience.

While advertising or monetization features are currently not an option, Axios is reporting that branded content tools will soon be available, giving the opportunity for experimentation with paid promotion of influencer content. This sponsored content option will feel more native to the feed-based platform and let brands gain credibility by partnering with relevant creators who align with their values.

What we don't know

Beyond branded content, it's unclear what ad options Threads will eventually offer. We believe they will be similar to those currently available for Instagram. However, they haven't yet disclosed:

  • Whether they'll launch ads with the robust settings currently available through Meta or a smaller set of targeting and creative parameters (like TikTok when it initially launched advertising).
  • Brand safety parameters, which will be top of mind for us and our clients.

What we do know

Despite not having all the details yet, the platform has over 100 million consumer accounts and is growing. We know it will soon open up to advertising. That makes it important for us to begin thinking through key campaign elements. They include:

  • Audience numbers. While Threads is off to an impressive early start with subscribers, we don't know how that does or will translate into daily or monthly active users. Further, Threads has just announced rate limits (limiting the number of Threads people can view per day) to combat spam attacks and data scraping. The platform acknowledged this may "unintentionally limit active users with false positives," which will of course impact how many people may be available to see a given ad.
  • Targeting. There's no guarantee we'll be able to apply targeting from other Meta platforms, so we want to have options in place to effectively reach our targets. This means examining factors like demographics, location, interests, and behaviors and how they relate to Threads content and usage.
  • Creative. The same holds true for creative and messaging. We're anticipating the need for options across a variety of ad formats: static, video, carousels and copy.
  • Testing Strategy. As a new platform, building a testing strategy with clearly defined goals will help us understand which audiences, messaging, and creative are working best for the brand.
  • Real-time Reporting. Incorporating Threads data into a real-time dashboard will give visibility into how Threads is performing compared to our other social channels and media campaigns overall.
  • Budgeting. Where would a budget for paid ads on Threads come from? Reallocation from other social platforms? Reallocating the percentage of overall budget that goes to paid social? Incremental or contingency funds?

Before paid advertising is available on the platform, brands should use this time to plan for the who, where, when, what and how (much) of potential Threads campaigns. Want us to help you tie all these threads together? Get in touch.

Check back tomorrow for our take on how our Creative team is thinking about Threads.

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