X (previously known as Twitter) is under attack from Meta’s new app called ‘Threads.’ In less than a week after its launch in July, Threads signed up more than 100 million users. (It’s even a trending topic on X/Twitter.) While this level of new users is good news for Meta, the key will be getting people to use Threads long-term. What is Threads? Threads is a social media app and microblogging tool. While it isn’t taking advertising placement – yet – it has access to all Facebook’s users plus Instagram and WhatsApp users. Threads allows users to log in using their Instagram or Facebook accounts, making the sign up process fast and easy. So easy that it signed up 30 million users in the first 24-hours of launch. As a direct competitor to X, X’s lawyers immediately alleged that Meta hired X employees to help build Threads. X is used to controversy and, with recent limits on posts viewed daily and content moderation, no stranger to users ire at it. The biggest problem though is X’s loss of advertisers. Threads is similar to X in many areas, including posts up to 500 text characters, reposting others’ threads, and posting photos and videos up to five minutes long. Threads is also free compared to users paying $8.00 per month for a X Blue subscription. Another allure of Threads is its quick connection to all your friends on Instagram. However, Threads does not have direct messaging yet, which keeps all posts in the public domain. Time will tell how the marketplace, and eventually advertisers, bonds with Threads. What do you think? Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Poll students: Who has used Threads? Why? What is the experience?
- Show information about Threads: https://about.fb.com/news/2023/07/introducing-threads-new-app-text-sharing/
- View video about Threads: https://youtu.be/hbMJSn5GyOE (there are many other videos also).
- What will move users to Threads from X/Twitter? What will move advertisers?
- Who are the competitors for Threads? (ex: BlueSky and Mastodon)
- Review key aspects of developing a product positioning map, including determining the axis labels for positioning.
- How should Threads position itself to beat out competitors?
- Divide students into teams and have each team develop a positioning map for Threads.
Source: Chen, B., and Issac, M. (12 July 2023). Threads review: How Meta’s new app stacks up against Twitter. New York Times; Jackson, K., and Aguilar, N. (14 July 2023). Threads keeps growing, and new updates have arrived: What you need to know. CNET; Rodriguez, S., and Haggin, P. (6 July 2023). Meta’s Threads app see early success, drawing advertiser interest and Twitter’s ire. Wall Street Journal; Rodriguez, S. (6 July 2023). Day after Threads launches, Twitter accuses Meta of using its trade secrets. Wall Street Journal; other news sources.