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Brands Are Recycling Old Tweets on Threads
It's a good place to start.
First, we've got a brief ad from our friends at Sprout Social, the social media management and intelligence tool for more than 34,000 brands worldwide.
The Sprout Social team has a really interesting new report called "The 2023 State of Social Media: AI and Data Take Center Stage". In it they surveyed more than 750 leaders in social media marketing, customer care, and communications to better understand how they’re investing in social media and its impact throughout their organizations. Key findings include:
80% of business leaders anticipate their company’s social media budget will increase in the next three years, and among them, more than 2 in 5 (44%) estimate their budget will increase by more than 50%.
Companies’ strategies are “consistently” or “often” informed by social media data and insights.
97% of leaders agree artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will enable companies to analyze social media data and insights more efficiently.
Trust me, I get it. It’s exhausting launching a brand on a new platform. Social managers are often expected to build an entire strategy while receiving zero additional resources. And yes, we knew Threads was coming, but nothing could have prepared us for the seemingly immediate mass adoption that happened. It didn’t help that Instagram gave a heads up to a few big brands that were able to come out of the gates swinging—creating urgency for other brands to immediately get involved and participate. Brands bragged “going to bed knowing we’re the first sauce on threads” and “goodmorning from the only threading rideshare app.”
I noticed something once the “Is this thing on…” and “First!” posts settled—there are a lot of brands reposting their top performing tweets on Threads.
Netflix took their classic 2019 tweet format of “what’s something you can say during sex but also when you manage a brand twitter account?” and repurposed it for Threads. Slim Jim is saying “mommy” over and over again on Threads now, just like on Twitter. Wendy’s reused “mid donalds”. TRUFF posted their 2021 tweet “who’s got the sauce” again—typo and all.
Repurposing tweets (especially top performers) is a smart interim strategy. Those posts have likely already been approved by management or clients. They also have a proven track record of getting good engagement—something that’s important when building up your presence on a new platform. It’s a no brainer. (I even implemented this strategy for a few clients.)
But a part of me really hopes, like I described above, this is just an interim strategy.
I’m nostalgic for the time when social platforms each served their unique purpose: Twitter for text posts, Instagram for photo posts, TikTok for short video posts, Facebook for a scary rant from your aunt. Each platform felt somewhat distinct.
As time has gone on, we’ve seen a collapse of original content on platforms. TikToks are posted as Reels, Tweets are shared to Instagram, Twitter ramblings are copy-and-pasted to LinkedIn, and so on. And while I, as a social manager, selfishly love repurposing content—I know deep down as a user it’s A LOT more fun when a brand has a unique, can-only-find-it-here POV on a social platform. For example, Wendy’s’ boomer Facebook strategy or the Empire State Building’s troll-y TikTok.
So what does this all mean for Twitter? I don’t know and I won’t pretend like I do. But I will say that if brands continue to repurpose tweets and essentially implement the exact same strategy on Threads (hopefully not!), I am having trouble imagining a world where people are going to want to consume content on both platforms. At a certain point it will feel duplicative and people (and brands) will choose where they want to spend their time.
Until then, find your footing on a new platform by playing the hits—but then figure out the value proposition for why someone would follow you on Threads vs any other platform. Maybe it’s where you, the social manager, break the fourth wall. Or you use it as a real community-building platform—conducting fun focus groups with your dedicated followers. Or you treat it like your brand’s finsta and just go totally rogue. No need to come up with a formal Threads strategy yet (we’re all just experimenting anyway!) but I hope, for the sake of keeping brand social interesting, we all try and build something unique and platform-specific there.
I want to remind everyone that one of the best perks of becoming a Link in Bio paid subscriber is access to the Discord! I can’t tell you how amazing it was to have a group of social managers to chat with during the release of Threads.
Here’s a nice note from someone who is in the community:
“A big part of our jobs as SMMs is to keep up with trends, platform updates, etc. and incorporate the relevant ones back into our own strategies. Because social media moves at the speed of light, I sometimes miss those changes. The link in bio discord is essentially a hive mind of SMMs who are sharing these changes as they see them. Every time I log on and catch up, I learn something new.
Separately, I've found the link in bio discord a fantastic resource for advice on everything from salary negotiation to "how do I do X." Many SMMs are a team of 1 and don't get to learn from a mentor in our niche, so having this community has been invaluable to professional growth. It also helps that there are folks at every level (from directors to newbies), so the advice comes from an incredible range of perspectives/experiences.”