This Month’s Trending Stories
Threads ties together the best of Twitter and Instagram
Meta’s new platform ‘Threads’ has hit the ground running with over 100 million users in its first week. This new decentralized network is set to rival Twitter, continuing the battle between Elon and Zuckerberg. In this app, users can post a Thread to start a chain of conversation with their followers.
Meta has made the app a breeze to sign up for, allowing Instagram’s current user base of one billion monthly active users to quickly set up an account. The platform aesthetic already has a clean and easily navigable UI. This lends itself to highly sharable memes and other short-form content. Already the memes are flowing. Now, we will have initial users like this and current Twitter users adopting this vibe.
In its very early days, but with an experienced team, Threads could be, as one investor put it, “A Twitter Killer.” However, Threads is unavailable in the EU due to regulatory uncertainty and heightened consumer sensitivity around data. Innovative brands with a UK and US focus could do well to develop an early presence on the platform. At the same time, those focused on European markets will be waiting to see if regulatory certainties can be resolved.
What happened when ‘Barbenheimer’ finally hit the big screens?
July 21st had been booked out in everyone’s calendar as the day two of the biggest movie releases of the year would hit cinemas. Fans across social media have been preparing for Barbie and Oppenheimer for months. They have shared outfit ideas, plans of which movie to see first, and ultimately which film will make the biggest splash at the box office.
In the first weekend of release, Greta Gerwig’s ‘Barbie’ soared to $162 million. Already smashing its record-breaking estimate of $155 million. The figures set ‘Barbie’ as the biggest opening weekend of the year and also “the biggest debut ever for a film directed by a woman.” Also beating expectations, ‘Oppenheimer’ reached a global tally of $180 million, making it “one of the best starts ever for an R-rated film, as well as a biographical drama.”
With both films drawing in the biggest collective weekend at the box office since the pandemic, it’s clear that these movies have defied all expectations. But the big question is… which film are you seeing first?
Close Encounters in Court: UFO sighting commences legal hearing
Former members of the US military have come forward alleging a government cover-up of UFOs. The US Congress set up a panel on “unidentified anomalous phenomenon” (UAPs) to further investigate. Witnesses shared their encounters with “non-human” entities and technology that “was far superior than anything that we had.”
This has sparked global media attention, fueling conspiracies around the US involvement in extraterrestrials that have been around for decades. But skeptics are questioning the inflationary nature of these claims. Journalist and historian Garrett Graff tweeted, “Very interesting to me that Dave Grusch is unwilling to state and repeat under oath at the #UFOHearings the most explosive – and outlandish – of his claims from his NewsNation interview. He seems to be very carefully dancing around repeating them.”
Others focus on the united front American citizens, and Congress have demonstrated in this incident. But one Democrat representative said, “it shouldn’t take the potential of non-human origin to bring us together.”
LinkedIn delves into the world of monetization
It’s known that LinkedIn has been working on helping creators create a presence on their platform over the past year. And now, the platform looks to invest more in this change. LinkedIn will soon look into monetization opportunities for users in Creator Mode, enabling brands and influencers to collaborate on posts and share their insights on ad campaigns.
Not only will this invite a new shared analytics approach between brands and creators, but LinkedIn influencers will be able to generate direct revenue from their presence. While nothing has been confirmed, this looks like a very promising step for both LinkedIn and its users. We’ll keep you updated on the next updates coming to the platform.
TikTok continues to experiment with its e-commerce experience
E-commerce sales are expected to soar by 10.4% this year alone. So it’s no surprise that social media giants from Snapchat and Meta to TikTok are looking to elevate their online shopping experiences. TikTok’s latest addition includes a ‘Shop’ tab that now features on the main screen.
Social commerce is becoming a key driver of e-Commerce in the US, with the industry expecting to grow 21.4% on an annual basis. Many apps are jumping on the bandwagon of adding e-commerce to everyday platforms. But Leaders will need to think carefully about creating in-platform experiences that are imaginative and meaningful.
What in the world is X?
Well, this might be the biggest platform update of the month. The app, formerly known as Twitter, has now been rebranded to X. CEO and X owner, Elon Musk, announced the new brand and app name in a series of tweets (if we can call them that anymore?) last week. The rebrand comes as part of Elon Musk’s plan to create an ‘everything app,’ which aims to one day include messaging and mobile payment capabilities.
Of course, it didn’t take long for brands to jump on the rebranding news, with many, including Deliveroo, ITV, Greggs, and Duolingo jokingly announcing similar rebrands. It seems we have to wave a sad goodbye to the iconic Twitter bird, affectionately known as Larry, and hello to a new era of the real-time conversational app. Let’s see what’s in store.