2024 Facebook, Instagram & Threads: 4 Predictions

As we come to 2024, it’s time to predict the developments of Meta, the parent company of leading social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Threads. The following predictions are based on our experience and observations of using these platforms, along with insights from Meta’s Q3 financial report in 2023.

One of the hottest topics in 2023 is undoubtedly AI, with technologies like ChatGPT and Midjourney making significant impacts across different industries. The use of AI in platform algorithms is not something new. In fact, in the recent Q3 report, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg mentioned that in 2023, thanks to AI recommendations, people spent 7% more time on Facebook and 6% more time on Instagram. Users could generally feel that the posts they received were more tailored to their preferences.

If you regularly use Ads Manager, you may have noticed some changes. Currently, when setting the target audience, Meta automatically selects the “Advantage+ Audience” for you. This means you can set your targeting as usual, but Meta treats your targeting as recommendations rather than strict limitations. This allows their system to help you automatically find the most suitable audience.

Additionally, when setting up ads, Meta often suggests using Advantage+ Creative, which means the platform changes the text placement, image colours, adds music, and more based on user preferences. They claim that this approach can effectively reduce advertising costs.

A Meta Ad Setting Interface.

Furthermore, in the Q3 discussions, both Mark and Meta’s CFO Susan mentioned “Advantage+ Shopping.” This is a new ad campaign within Ads Manager that allows optimization using AI for specific Standard Events (currently only available for Purchase). The unique feature of this campaign is that you cannot set any targeting parameters; the system has full control over the delivery decisions.

Based on our experience, manually setting targeting parameters currently performs better in the short term compared to full AI optimization. However, this situation is expected to change as AI progresses, and we will be keenly observing any improvements in the future.

Prediction 2: The Future of Threads

The hype around Threads in Hong Kong can be considered to have passed. Initially, there was a surge in usage, but within a week, the level of discussion and interest had significantly decreased.

However, when we currently open Threads, we can still see that there are many users from Taiwan who continue to use it actively. Its engagement is not as low as some may think. The content on Threads is noticeably different from Facebook and Instagram, with more focus on sharing thoughts and random posts, primarily text-based. Lifestyle moments, photo, and video sharing are less prominent.

In our view, Threads does have its appeal, so we don’t believe it will fade away gradually like other applications previously introduced by Facebook (e.g., Lasso).

Threads has potential to grow if integrated more comprehensively with Instagram.

Although many users in Hong Kong are sceptical about the future of Threads, if Threads suddenly increases its integration with Instagram, for example, by displaying Threads content within Instagram accounts or increasing the chances of interactions on Threads leading to increased visibility on Instagram, these would serve as incentives for users to use Threads.

Prediction 3: Instagram's Development

After sharing our views on Threads, let’s move on to Instagram. We have noticed that Instagram’s updates have become more frequent as we approached 2024. Some minor updates include the ability to share comments and add notes to posts.

Furthermore, Instagram has been observed testing additional features, such as allowing users to upload images for creators to choose from when they make a post (similar to a concept of a collage). Along with the previously launched Collaborator feature, these updates indicate a focus on enhancing user interaction and collaboration on the platform.

Collaborative features are introduced to Instagram.

Most people can easily recall the updates that Instagram introduced in 2023, such as Broadcast Channels and so on. However, can you name any significant updates from Facebook this year?

Based on the observation mentioned above, we can infer that Facebook has reached a mature stage of development and is in a phase of maintenance and consolidation. The focus of significant developments is likely to be on other platforms, including Instagram and Threads.

Prediction 4: Will Monetization Become More Diversified?

According to Meta’s Q3 2023 financial report, 99% of the revenue from their Family of Apps came from advertising. The report also highlighted the revenue specifically generated by Reality Labs (related to the metaverse).

Some revenue models that come to mind but were not specifically mentioned in the report include:

  • Paid verification programs on Facebook and Instagram
  • Paid ad-free versions of Facebook and Instagram (limited to the European Union region)
  • Instagram Creator Program and Subscriptions revenue sharing
  • WhatsApp Business charges

The revenue under the “Family of Apps (Other)” category in the report encompasses the mentioned items, but it accounts for only 1% or even less of the total revenue.

It appears that despite Meta’s efforts to diversify its revenue streams, advertising is still expected to be the primary focus of their earnings in 2024. There were previous rumours about WhatsApp introducing ad charges, but this has not been confirmed yet.

Additionally, Meta’s revenue performance in Q3 of this year was better compared to the same period last year. Although we cannot determine Facebook’s level of activity, the long-standing notion of Meta’s decline seems unlikely to happen anytime soon.

In Summary

We believe that Meta’s position as a leader in social media platforms remains strong, even with the significant challenge posed by ByteDance (the parent company of TikTok). At least in the Hong Kong region, Meta can be considered dominant.

However, the extent to which other social platforms, entertainment, and post-pandemic openness will impact the activity on the Meta platform remains uncertain.

This article is originally published by MORE Digital:

Picture of MORE Digital Limited

MORE Digital Limited

MORE Digital is a Hong Kong-based digital marketing agency. Our clients include real estate developers, media companies, utilities, record labels, and more. In addition to the examples mentioned above, we have also helped various clients establish and grow their Instagram accounts to achieve various goals. If you have any challenges or questions regarding promotion, feel free to reach out to us on our website or on Instagram (@moredigitalhk) for direct conversation. You can also contact us via email at