What is Threads? Exploring the “Twitter Killer.”

It’s not a secret that it has been a challenging time for X (previously known as Twitter), between management turnover and widespread reports of users and trusted organizations exiting the platform. However, Meta (Facebook and Instagram’s parent company) recently unveiled their solution to a potential gap in the marketplace: Threads.  

The new app officially launched in July 2023 and has quickly been dubbed X’s newest competitor. We explored the platform to help answer client’s most pressing questions:  


What is Threads?  

Threads is Instagram’s new app for public conversations. It is designed to provide users with a forum for real time updates and open discussions.  

Similar to X, the app is designed for short, more frequent text posts. It has a 500-character count limit per post, and users can also reply to, repost, and quote post other users’ content. Threads also allows users to share photos, but it is primarily text heavy.  


How do you get Threads?  

Threads is available via iOS or Android apps. It is currently only available for mobile use and does not have a desktop website.  

screenshot of threads in the app store for download


How do I get started?  

Threads is extremely easy to download, sign up, and begin using. Because the platform is integrated with Instagram, it auto populates your Instagram data, including username and password, bio, and bio link, which allows you to launch your account within minutes.  

The interface appears very similar to X, with tabs for your timeline, followers, writing posts, engagement notifications, and settings. Engagement is very easy, with options to reply and add content directly to your Instagram story.  

As soon as I logged in, I had a handful of follower requests based on my personal Instagram account and suggested content based on similar Instagram channels I follow. It was also surprising to see how many accounts had already joined and begun posting – from The New York Times to influencers and lifestyle bloggers.  

There have been reports of various product bugs, but this will likely improve once the app is out of its infancy.  

 screenshot of threads to add to your instagram story


tweet of the New York Times about Instagram Threads


Is Threads here to stay?  

At the end of the day, only time will tell if Threads will be successful or join other little-used social media platforms sitting in the dust. But if the app’s reported 30 million users overnight is any indication, Threads could be here to stay. It certainly has good chances of adoption given its easy integration with other widely used Meta platforms and existing customer base.  


Does my organization need to join?  

The answer is: maybe! Social media isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. Before launching any new social media platform, we always recommend working closely with your PR or marketing team to ensure the decision makes sense for your social media strategy, goals, audience, and overall brand guidelines.  

Plus, like any social media channel, your account will only be successful if your team has the bandwidth to consistently post, engage, and track progress – meaning it’s better to not join than to have an inactive account.  

For additional information on utilizing social media strategically, don’t miss “2023 Social Media Trends” and “Social Media Training 101: Turning Employees into Brand Ambassadors” on the Maven blog.  

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