Supermarkets and brands are flocking to new ‘Twitter killer’ social media platform Threads.
The traditional big four supermarkets, as well as Aldi and Lidl, M&S, Waitrose, Iceland, Ocado and Co-op, have all joined the Threads platform since its launch last week. Fmcg brands including Coca-Cola, Heinz, Quorn, Weetabix and Kit Kat have also signed up.
M&S has also created separate profiles for Colin the Caterpillar and Percy Pig on the platform.
Threads is owned by Meta, the company behind Facebook and Instagram. It functions in a similar way to Twitter, though it allows posts of up to 500 characters versus Twitter’s 280. At present it doesn’t include a direct messaging function.
“Brands are scrambling to join Threads due to a mix of FOMO and concern that they will be left behind if they don’t jump on the bandwagon,” said G Bansal, co-founder and creative strategy director of One Twelve Agency.
“Joining now is a good plan, because followers will be paying extra attention to Threads; organic reach always peaks for the latest shiny new thing. So, it’s a great way to engage with people who might be bored of Twitter or are just excited about a new platform,” she added.
To use Threads, users require an Instagram account. The might of Instagram and its one billion monthly active users gives Threads a higher chance of success than rival Twitter alternatives like Mastodon and Bluesky, which have struggled to scale.
Threads had gained 100 million users earlier this week – making it the new fastest-growing app of all time, beating records set by OpenAI’s ChatGPT earlier this year.
Posts by supermarkets and brands have been in line with the tone of voice they use on other social media channels.
“Threads is providing a perfect, low-risk playground for brands to comment on news and trends and to engage in light-hearted conversations with their customers,” said Lloyd Williams, head of strategy at Socially Powerful.
“Twitter quickly fell into being a customer service channel for many brands, as it was the most frictionless way for people to complain,” he added. “But right now Threads is a fresh, positive place to be and supermarket social media managers are having a lot of fun exploring it. Brands should try to keep it that way for as long as possible.”
Twitter – which was acquired last year by Elon Musk – is considering legal action against Meta over Threads, claiming Meta has hired dozens of former Twitter employees who had used “Twitter’s trade secrets and other highly confidential information” to create the “copycat” app.
Meta communications director Andy Stone used the new platform to defend against the claim, posting: “No one on the Threads engineering team is a former Twitter employee — that’s just not a thing.”
Musk later tweeted: “Competition is fine, cheating is not.”