What is Threads?
Threads is a text-based conversation app that was designed to bring communities together and foster communication. It allows users to connect directly with their favourite influencers, brands and celebrities, and takes advantage of Instagram’s strong existing user base to do so. Created to rival Twitter, Threads has certainly proved to be tough competition.
How do you create an account?
So, how do you create an account? Meta have made it really easy. To make your account, you download the Threads app and link it to your Instagram account, however, if you do not have an Instagram account, you will need to make one. It is important to note that if you create a Threads account and decide you want to delete it, your Instagram account will be deleted along with it. Adam Mosseri, the CEO of Instagram has said they are working to fix this, but for now, it’s important that users are aware of the consequences.
How do you use it?
Once you’ve connected your account, you can choose to keep your same following as on Instagram or to start fresh. This is a key benefit for the platform, and especially important for digital marketers because you do not have to start from scratch to build your audience.
Then from there, it’s time to post! Threads posts can be 500 characters long and can include links, up to 10 photos and five minute long videos. These benefits transcend Twitter’s 280 characters and four photos post limit. Additionally, you can directly post your Threads to your Instagram story and you can also post the link on other platforms.
Who is using Threads?
So far, celebrities such as Kim Kardashian, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Oprah are all on Threads, and the platform even received five million sign-ups in the first four hours. Not to mention, a number of arts organisations have already made the leap including Tate, Sadler’s Wells, Shakespeare’s Globe and the Southbank Centre. There are now over 100 million users on the platform, and the number continues to grow. One of the key motivators included giving new users a badge on their profile which determines the number they were when joining – encouraging brands not to be ‘late to the party’.
What are the drawbacks of the platform?
The platform has received wide-spread attention and excitement. But just like any new platform, the opportunities are not without a catch. The connection between threads and Instagram adds additional pressure for users to be intentional about signing up. Mosseri has acknowledged that the platform is still a work in progress, with some users still in preference of Twitter’s features such as, chronological order of posts and the option to search for trending topics.
Threads is also subject to concerns around its data collection policy, with the app’s privacy disclosure stating it can collect information on users health, search history and other sensitive personal details. Due to these concerns, the platform is not yet available or approved in the EU.
No one truly knows what direction the platform will go. It could become incredibly successful like TikTok, or it could be a bust like Meta’s Clubhouse app that was launched in May 2020. Even after one week it appears that Threads has high potential to threaten Twitter’s market position which means swift changes to brands’ and retailers’ marketing channels and strategies.
Threads is exciting, new, and has the potential to be another invaluable tool for social media users and marketers… So, will you be diving in?