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Twitter alternatives to explore for your content strategy – Substack, Hive

Loves to write, loves to research, and loves the performance of all things social & blog strategy.

We’ve talked enough about Twitter the past three weeks, so we’re going to jump directly into some popular alternatives to the app that seem to be making a splash.

#1 – Hive, another Twitter alternative? 

In the wake of Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter, users have been fleeing to other social apps. We’ve talked about Mastodon, but it has its unique challenges. Social app Hive seems to be gaining traction as Twitter falters, with ~30% of its total 733k installs occurring over the last 30 days. The new Twitter defector app found itself in the top 20 in the US. App Store.

Founded in 2019 by then-22-year-old Kassandra Pop, Hive is not a direct Twitter clone. The app build comes from a variety of social networks, including both Instagram and Twitter and even MySpace — the latter thanks to a feature that lets Hive users add music to their profiles.

The app is also not solely timeline-based, as Twitter is. In addition to the main feed, Hive’s users can explore their interests across a range of topic-based communities. Here, users can like, comment, and repost the shared content, similar to other social networks.

In some respects, Hive may feel more comfortable to former Twitter users looking for a new home because the app has a simple and familiar set of navigation options. Hive also uses the same follower-based model as Twitter.

However, unlike most social networks, Hive avoids personalization algorithms in favor of a chronological feed, and (YAY!) it doesn’t monetize using ads. At least not yet. Instead, Hive offers users the ability to pay to unlock additional slots that let them showcase more of their favorite music on their profile. These range from $0.99 for a second slot to $1.99 for a third.

Here’s the link on how to set up your account and profile on Hive. Let us know if you test it out. 

#2 – Substack launches ‘Chat’ – a new feature that enables creators and subscribers to connect

“Shepherding my Twitter followers onto my substack like Noah’s Ark,”  Intercept reporter Ken Klippenstein tweeted to his 471,000 followers a few days after Elon Musk took over Twitter.

Yes, Substack has entered the scene as a new way to connect with followers and maybe even bring your community over from Twitter.

But the two platforms are very different: Twitter supplies writers with the ability to share their stories; quick, reactionary pieces of analysis next to the absolute dumbest thoughts they’ve ever had. Substack is a platform for thoughtful, long-form newsletters and written content.

Enter Substack’s new chat function, a space for Substack writers and creators to host Twitter-like conversations with their subscribers. It’s a space that feels a lot like AOL Instant Messenger and looks a lot like Reddit. 

Substack launched it on Nov. 3 — about a week after Musk brought a sink into the Twitter headquarters — and described it as “having your own private social network where you make the rules,” a note that it pairs well with Substack’s ethos of owning your own subscriber list. 

Substack co-founder Hamish McKenzie said he thinks “people are kind of fed up with it all in the public brawl of social media, and the idea of having a space where you can hang out with the people who actually want to be hanging out with you and talking about the things that you have a shared interest in … having that greater control. It’s just more fun.  It’s more like classic, old internet fun.”


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