How to move your following from X to Threads (or anywhere)

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3 min readOct 9, 2023
Source: Reuters

Thanks to recent breaking news misinformation drowning the network, and Musk’s ‘pay or further ‘enshitification’ until you do’ policy, Twitter/X has declined in usefulness as much as the (very fluid) numbers have. As a result, a platform that hundreds of millions of people have built up followings on over decades is becoming joyless and lacking returns. Many are looking for alternatives to build new homes including WhatsApp groups, Threads, Substack Notes to Artifact, but how can you efficiently move your followers?

The truth is there is no quick way, but there are a lot of things that can work in the short and long term to your advantage. Write a list of everything you have at your disposal (newsletters, friends, Facebook profile etc) and figure out what’s appropriate to use to let your people know what’s happening. Short and sweet, no need for soapboxes.

Firstly, the simple stuff. Change your bio and pin a post on X letting people know what you’re planning, start to link regularly to the account you are heading to. Start promoting the new destination when you speak to large crowds, on email signatures etc. You get the idea.

Secondly, start using a free scheduler to send out regular, but infrequent, tweets about your plan to jump off X. These won’t see much action, but every little helps. Also, use these sorts of tools to cross-post content from the new destination. Don’t try and game the system or give X any reason to shut your account before you’re ready.

Now moving existing people to the new platform is trickier, but not impossible. The best way, which will take time, and a bit of money is probably to use a tool like TweetDM, which will allow you to DM your followers and let them know you are off (or have an offer etc). It’s safest to be a blue tick member before you begin doing this in case X isn’t happy with you DMing so many people saying you’re heading off X.

The other best way to get to a lot of people at once is to give/get with well-followed people. You might have used this when you were growing on X. Find all the well-followed people, or just people(!) and ask them to tell their people where you are going and what you’ll be posting. The key? Offer to do the same for them. A nice addition might be holding a competition or giveaway for people who come on before a certain date or engage with your content minimally. Still use relevant (key word) hashtags to attract new people who are likely interested in the new destination and subject matter.

Look for tools (free or otherwise) that offer ways to explore your followers. Look for engaged folks, people who have been active recently and those who came on first, those are all the most likely to come across easily. You can @ tag folks to alert them fast — ask them to repost (the worst they can say is ‘no’).

A further smart move is to use the live features available to you, these give you free reach and amplification. Do this on X with spaces and live video if you can, alternatively host a live on Threads and share that link with your following on X to bring as many as possible across. Jump into spaces that are relevant and say some smart things if the host lets you have the mic. Host your own events and thank people for following you, show them what they’ll be missing.

Finally, the last thing to do before jumping over and going cold turkey from X is to create a busy content schedule on the new platform of choice.

The biggest bit of advice is to have patience and set your expectations low early, this will be a marathon, not a sprint and you will never likely get the majority of your following across unless you have a different direct method of communication. Be ambitious but not stupid, it is not in X’s best interest to make this process easy for you or your followers.

What should you do right now?
Follow me on Threads of course for the final tip.

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