We explain what Meta Threads is and how to use the record-breaking social media app
It’s estimated that us Brits spend two and a half hours a day solely scrolling through social media – that’s up to 75 hours a month (over three days!) – which is bonkers when you think about it. However, that time is only ever likely to increase, especially when new social media apps such as Threads are released.
With a surprise launch on the 5th July 2023, Mark Zuckerberg’s Threads burst onto the scene to rival Elon Musk’s Twitter. In this article, we share everything you need to know about Threads including what it’s for and how to use the social media app. Read on to find out more…
What is Threads?
Threads is an app built by the team behind the mighty Instagram – rumour has it that some of the team working on the app were previous Twitter employees! It is designed for users to post text-based content and come together as a community to share in conversation. Real-time updates are paired with public conversations to create a new space where thoughts, ideas and opinions can be shared in one place.
When Threads launched, it was instantly made available in over 100 countries across the world on both iOS and Android devices – and can be downloaded for free via the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Within the first few hours of going live, Threads had five million sign-ups and is already considered to be the most downloaded new app of all time.
What is the basic concept of Threads?
The whole idea is that Threads is the text version of Instagram. The creators developed the app with positivity and expressiveness in mind, which others can share in and take enjoyment from too. In a bid to protect children, anyone aged under 16 (in some countries this is 18-years-old) will automatically have a private profile when joining the Threads community.
AI (Artificial Intelligence) has a big part to play in the app, including AI-generated image descriptions and text support. Users are encouraged to engage with others by replying and responding to Threads posts, and everything you see can be controlled through the app’s privacy settings.
In another move to make the social media platform a more bespoke yet unified experience, when users start a new thread, they can choose who is able to reply to the post. This means you can have conversations and discussions with people who share common interests, and not just your friends.
How does Threads work?
If you have an Instagram account, you can create a free Threads login through that. If not, then you’ll need to create an Instagram account to be able to access Threads. Your username and verification credentials will automatically carry over, and you can choose to keep or customise your existing profile.
Similar to Instagram, ‘Threaders’ can build their own community of connections by following friends and users who have shared interests. Posts from the people you follow will appear in your own central feed, alongside content from other creators that is recommended to you as a source of mutual interest.
As for the posts themselves, there’s a few rules to stick to; each post must be no more than 500 characters long and if you include a video, it can’t be any more than five minutes of viewing time. Links and photos can be included in posts too, and a handy feature is that you can share Threads posts to your Instagram story to help increase its reach.
Find out how to create a profile on Threads via the Instagram help centre. It’s important for us to point out that if you want to delete your Threads account at any time, bear in mind that it will also automatically remove your Instagram account, so we’d suggest not to do that!
What is the difference between Threads and Twitter?
First thing’s first, it’s important to establish here that Threads ISN’T replacing Twitter. In fact, Threads is a direct competitor to Twitter and shares many similarities, but also has some distinct differences, as we explain…
10 key differences between Threads and Twitter
- Length of post: Threads has a limit of 500 characters whereas Twitter’s limit is 280 characters
- Style of post: Twitter was created for people to share an instant thought or one-off news piece, but Threads encourages users to join in conversation and discussion through a series of posts that are connected
- Organisation of posts: The short-form content and individualised posts on Twitter are displayed in a feed ordered by timeline. Threads enables content to come together on a topical basis, so that a clear narrative is formed for readers to be part of
- Engaging in posts: At present, Threads can only be responded to by being reposted or a direct reply. As we know, tweets on Twitter can also be liked which automatically pulls them into a favourites folder
- Reach of posts: We’re all familiar with tweets that have gone viral via Twitter, which is the power of posting. Posts on Threads are less likely to cause a stir as these form a larger narrative, rather than acting as individual megaphone moments
- Publishing a post: Tweets on Twitter are a flash-in-the-pan and are therefore designed to be posted there and then. The idea of posts on Threads is for users to share considered and though-out information for long-term use
- Quality of posts: Threads users are encouraged to create posts and conversations that stand the test of time and prove useful to others, on the contrary, Twitter’s tweets can quite literally be here today and gone tomorrow
- Consumption of post: This follows on nicely from our point above; tweets on Twitter can be quickly consumed and reacted upon there and then, but the idea of posts on Threads is for them to be digested carefully and provoke an input from other users
- Content of posts: If it’s memorable memes, snippets of news and celeb updates you desire, then Twitter has it all, but, if personal stories, in-depth discussions or educational pieces are what you’re looking for, then Threads could be your new go-to app
- Presentation of posts: If you’re happy to jump from post to post consuming bits of information, then Twitter’s feed very much caters for that. Posts on Threads are displayed in numbered order in your feed, making them relatable by topic and discussion cluster – essentially, they tell a story
What’s the future of Threads?
The first app developed by Meta to be compatible with an open Social Networking Protocol (SNP), Threads is aiming to allow people en-mass collaboration in the future. This means that users could experience a centralised social network system that performs as one platform, so in theory, Meta’s suite of social networks (such as Facebook, Instagram and Threads) could combine to form one super-social network one day… Watch this space!
Step up your social game
In this day and age, it is unlikely we come across a dealership that isn’t on social media and if not, there’s some serious questions to be asked! Love it or hate it, social media can play a prominent part in your business by helping you to reach thousands of potential new customers. What you put in is what you get, so it’s important to spend time creating a social media strategy as part of your wider marketing plans.
Here at 67 Degrees, we know a thing or two about making the most of social media, and getting your dealership seen and heard. Speak to us about how we can work with you to develop a bespoke strategy for your business via paid social campaigns which will leave you wishing you’d jumped onboard sooner.