Brands are searching for creative ways to keep up with evolving social media audiences as mobile video sharing app Vine continues to grow in popularity. The platform has filled a social media gap many people didn’t even know existed, enabling users to check out a “highlights reel” featuring six-second videos created by friends via smartphone.
But how can a brand connect with its audience in just six seconds?
The trick to creating a standout Vine might lie in embracing the platform’s simplicity. The most striking Vines capture a single idea or moment thoroughly, rather than attempting to cram a complex story into such a short time frame.
Many brands seem to be taking notes from individual users and creating Vines that have a more personal feel. Often, these videos share fun tidbits of company culture, sneak peeks at new products, and amusing clips that are unrelated to the company and designed just to entertain followers. The goal of these videos isn’t to serve as mini-commercials, but instead to contribute toward the brand identity as a whole.
Urban Outfitters took this approach shortly after the app’s January launch with the company’s first post, titled “The Most Important Vine You’ll Ever See”, which perfectly captures the brand’s fun, slightly ironic image.
Still, even a six-second video can be complex to create. As more users are discovering, part of Vine’s charm is its start-and-stop filming method, which allows Viners to create everything from montages to stop-motion animation. The videos each loop within the app’s feed, resulting in a GIF-like effect.
This style distinguishes Vine from other methods of video-sharing, and as many users are realizing, taking advantage of this style can result in impressive Vines, more followers, and higher engagement. General Electric has a particular knack for working with the channel’s style, having created a popular and perfectly-looping Vine for this past “Pi Day”, March 14th.
Vine can also be a great channel for creating a series of related posts. Lowe’s Home Improvement’s “Lowe’s Fix In Six” series offers practical Vines that demonstrate simple solutions to common household problems. Since the platform allows users to instantly share videos to their own Facebook and Twitter pages, helpful series like these encourage users to spread the brand’s message to their own followers.
Of course, it’s always difficult to forecast an app’s lasting power, but considering that Vine keeps drawing comparisons to social media mainstay Instagram, its future looks promising.
— Karen Muller, Summer 2013 Intern