Meta’s new social platform, Threads, released on July 5, 2023, to much fanfare. According to Reuters, Threads saw a huge initial influx of 100 million people in its first five days of operation. Such an incredible performance set it up as a true rival to X (formerly Twitter).
But it’s been slightly more than three months since launch…so where does Threads stand now? And what does it mean for credit union social media strategy?
Let’s look at how Threads progressed since July, the new features it's introducing and what it all means for your credit union social media strategy.
What Goes Up…Must Come Down
Threads experienced incredible growth right off the bat. A user base a third of the size of the population of the United States hopped on in the first week, and they used the app for 21 minutes at a time. Two things drove the surge: ease and dislike of X.
You use your Instagram account information to log into Threads, so the barrier to entry is low if you already have an Instagram account. No extra time setting up a new account. No new relationship with another company. A user who loves Instagram inherently trusts Threads. When Threads released, many Instagram users could simply log in.
Also, X is a controversial company. Many people dissatisfied with Elon Musk’s control of X and his new policies excitedly jumped ship to Threads when it launched.
But Threads hasn’t sustained the meteoric rise it saw at release.
It only added 32 million accounts since July, and usage dropped to six minutes at a time. It actually seems like X is winning – it still has far more users and much higher session times than Threads. The initial excitement about Meta’s app couldn’t overcome Thread’s lack of features or X’s established footprint in the social media landscape.
Threads is implementing new features to help accessibility and increase account numbers.
The Threads web application (released in August) offers a more appealing experience to professional audiences in the same way LinkedIn’s web app does. This might expand the audience credit union social media strategy considers and incentivize the creation of more organizational accounts.
Other features Threads is introducing include:
- Better keyword search functionality
- Showcasing Threads on someone’s Instagram profile page
- Post editing
- Post scheduling
An especially interesting long-term Threads goal relevant to credit union social media strategy is interoperability. This term simply means you can see messages and content from other social media platforms on your own preferred platform. So hypothetically, you could see LinkedIn content on Facebook or X content on Threads.
Should Threads Be a Part of Credit Union Social Media Strategy?
If you already have an Instagram account, it’s certainly easy enough to be on Threads. But is it even worthwhile? Are your target audiences on there? These are important questions to ask before incorporating Threads into your credit union social media strategy.
Data shows Threads users are primarily male, and 37% of accounts belong to those 18 to 24 years old. As shown above, the audience isn’t large enough to rival other social networks yet…including Threads' arch-nemesis X. But Threads also offers better opportunities than X for credit union social media marketers, as it aims to focus on other priorities than politics and breaking news.
According to head of Instagram Adam Mosseri, “Politics and hard news are inevitably going to show up on Threads - they have on Instagram as well to some extent - but we're not going to do anything to encourage those verticals.”
Still, prioritizing Threads as part of your credit union social media strategy right now is a bit cavalier.
There just isn’t enough activity there to justify the time investment, and targeting Gen Z would be better done through TikTok. Threads might be worth its salt in the future depending on how interoperability works out and if new features generate growth. But for now, your credit union social media strategy must focus elsewhere.
For more social media strategy (and even help posting on social media), book a free consultation with On The Mark Strategies!