Twitter X vs Meta Threads – Which Microblogging Platform Should You be Using?
Published on 3rd August 2023
There’s a new social on the block and it’s gaining ground on its competitors fast. Threads is Meta’s alternative to Twitter and is the first time Elon Musk’s recently acquired social platform has faced a serious threat.
Twitter has faced competition before, such as Bluesky, Clubhouse, Discord, Spill and Mastodon, and seen them off. So, why is Threads such a threat and proving to be immensely popular, and which microblogging platform should you use?
Differences between Twitter and Threads
There’s no doubt that Threads, Meta’s alternative to the long-standing Twitter platform, is very similar to Twitter, but there are differences.
1. Number of post characters. Threads has almost doubled the length of a post by allowing up to 500 characters, leaving Twitter behind on 280 characters.
2. Video length. In the world of content marketing, videos are a crowd pleaser and again, Threads has outdone Twitter with videos of 5 minutes in length compared to Twitter’s 2 minutes and 20 seconds. However, it is worth noting that by signing up for Twitter Blue, you can post videos that are unlimited in length as well as longer posts, editable posts. But if you can get longer videos and posts on Threads, why opt for Twitter Blue?
3. Text first vs visual first. Twitter is text led and users are allowed to share just four visuals per post. Threads, on the other hand, allow users to share as many as ten in a post, meaning people can be more creative.
4. Features compared. At the moment, Twitter is way ahead on the features front with hashtags, direct messaging, and follow and discovery page functionality. But then they do have a 17-year head start on their rivals. But this is likely to be short-lived as the Threads team recently confirmed these features, and more, are on the way.
5. Verification for security. One of the reasons many people are moving away from Twitter is the removal of the standard verification protocols. As well as people fearing Twitter was no longer as secure as it had been, chaos ensued when Musk decided the Blue Check was now open for anyone to purchase. Threads, on the other hand, not only made sure they retained a standard verification system, but they also aligned it with Instagram users. So, those who have an Instagram account will automatically be verified on Threads.
6. Privacy is an issue for both. When it comes to user privacy, both platforms need to step up significantly. Being part of Meta does not save Threads in this aspect. Twitter has also been criticised for its privacy practices being well below par.
7. Mobile first. Threads, like its sister Instagram, is a mobile-first social media platform and its website will direct you to the app stores. Twitter is not mobile-first, although it has become more mobile in recent years. But, in fairness to Twitter, mobile apps were not all the rage when it started all those years ago.
One thing to note is that Threads largely relies on Instagram, including its verification process, data and privacy policies, as well as user acquisition. While this has given thousands the confidence to sign up with Threads – it is the fastest social media platform to reach 100 million active users – it can also be quite restrictive.
This is one of the biggest problems for Threads at the moment. You can’t sign up for a Threads account without having an Instagram account. Also, posting in Threads doesn’t have the immediacy that Twitter has – at the moment. That said, the user interface on Threads is more friendly and it’s easier to engage with the post’s content. You’ve also got the added bonus of Threads integrating seamlessly with other Meta platforms, like Instagram and Facebook, making it much easier to share content.
However, Twitter’s benefit is that it's not tied to any other platform and therefore you can sign up independently. You can choose your own separate login in credentials and you can deactivate or delete your account without it impacting other social media platforms you use. On Threads, delete your account and you’ve deleted your Instagram account as well.
Functionality and features are very much a win for Twitter at the moment, but it’s highly likely that this position won’t last for long. This is not only because the Threads team is working on introducing a raft of features but they’re also working on improving data privacy controls. Currently, Threads is not available in the EU because the data privacy rules are much stricter for European countries.
Which microblogging platform should I use?
Which microblogging platform you use predominantly depends on how much you rely on Instagram, and Facebook to a degree. If you want the option of being able to seamlessly integrate your posts across our Meta-based social media platforms, Threads is probably a better choice. But if you don’t use Instagram, then you can’t have a Threads account unless you sign up for it at the same time. But as most businesses do use Instagram, this shouldn’t be too much of a hurdle to get over.
At the moment, functionality in terms of messaging, search and following is not there on Threads but, if you’re prepared to hang around for a few weeks, it will be. There is much more room for content sharing, in text and visual formats, and usability on Threads is much more fluent.
But there is an argument for the tried-and-tested of Twitter. Its functionality beats Threads hands down, for a few more weeks anyway, and you can run your account independently from your other social media platforms. Ultimately, it’s down to your own personal preference.
Our network of it’seeze website consultants throughout the UK and Ireland are well-versed in the use of social media platforms and how they are incorporated into your website. We help businesses of all shapes and sizes design and build websites that are fully optimised and effective. Get in touch with us today to start your it’seeze journey.
Tagged as: social media marketing
Share this post: