By Mark Sherbin published March 17, 2013

Video Content: 6 Easy Ways to Use Vine for Marketing

boost video content with vineFor those who have already discovered it, Vine is on fire.

Vine is a new short video app available for iProducts only (but that we expect will get an inevitable Android birth in the near future). You can use it to share a maximum of six seconds of video footage on Facebook, Twitter, or Vine’s native social network. What makes it a really powerful app is the ability to splice together bits of nonconsecutive video content to create a montage.

Brands seemed to jump on the trendy new app almost as quickly as consumers did. Vines appear inside a tweet, which means you don’t have to redirect your viewers to another website. If you have a major Twitter presence, that in-tweet experience offers a great way to engage and differentiate your brand in a sea of branded micro-content.

Looking for some ideas to add Vine to your content marketing arsenal? Here are six tips that make it easy to jump onboard.

1. Show off your brand

What’s more powerful than an elevator pitch? A six-second video that shows your brand, products or services in action.

We like it short and sweet these days, and we don’t want the pitch. It’s much more convincing to show what you do than to tell people about it.

Product-oriented Vines are especially powerful for B2C brands. You might show a woman wearing your new line of warm gloves out on a snowy day, for example.

Consumers aren’t the only ones with an opportunity to show off. Maybe you have some representatives speaking at SXSW. Or you’ve walked into Google’s offices for a partner meeting and you want to show off your clout to your clients.

Pick the approach that’s best for your audience and show them how it’s done.

Urban Outfitters

Popular clothing and accessory brand Urban Outfitters took to Vine almost immediately, sharing the short video clips over Twitter. The company uses Vine to showcase seasonal lines (like this one for St. Patrick’s Day).

Urban Outfitters also features great novelty gifts and accessories, some of which are well suited for Vine. (Check out this great bobblehead Vine based on AMC’s The Walking Dead, for example.)

 

2. Send a message to your customers

Have a news announcement, a quick tip or a cause with which you’re aligning your brand? Choose to send that message through a Vine. Vines are more engaging and interactive than text. Sending messages through the short video service gives messages more impact, in some cases putting a face on your brand to help connect with your audience on a more personal level.

Sonar

A social start-up called Sonar recently shared the news via Vine that it received funding through a new set of investors.

3. Encourage your fans to contribute

There’s no more powerful way to generate content on a budget than recruiting your customers to help out.

Vine is trendy, which means plenty of iPhone-equipped consumers are already interacting through the app. Give them a prompt and watch their creative juices start flowing.

Motivate customers to contribute through contests or come up with inspiring ideas that will excite audience members into participating. Or simply reach out to readers, asking them to submit Vines around a specific idea that gels with your brand.

The Cavendish London

The Cavendish Hotel in London created a Valentine’s Day contest (#ValentineVine) encouraging followers to create a romantic Vine. The winning Vine contributor won an overnight stay at the hotel. Here is the winner.

 

4. Leverage existing video content.

Have some video content sitting around and collecting dust? Vine’s a good way to re-leverage that content. Use Vine to create short previews that link back to longer videos, for example.

Existing content can be used in other ways, too. Creating a six-second short that neatly sums up a brand message, sourced from existing video content, could be a useful tactic. However you apply your existing video content, Vine is a great tool to change how you promote that content on Twitter for the better.

New York Rangers

The NHL started the season with an image problem because of the lockout. But now that the shortened season is underway, the New York Rangers organization is making the most of it to showcase its marketing chops.

So far, the Rangers have used Vine to feature a winning shootout goal; the team celebrating a win; and the process of preparing the stadium for hockey following a Knicks game, among other Rangers-themed Vines.

 

5. Become a journalist

Attending an event your customers might find interesting? Report back in digestible visual chunks with Vine. Vines became a popular form of brand journalism at this year’s SXSW, where brands and brand representatives took video footage of presentations, concerts and other cool tidbits of the gigantic Austin event.

Fender Guitars

SXSW is known for more than its presentations on interactive marketing and technology. Throughout the event, Fender tweeted Vines of different bands gigging, including this Vine of Thurston Moore’s new band.

 

6. Explain a concept

Like much of your content marketing, Vine can also be used as a teaching or informational tool. It can help further flesh out a concept as a visual aid to complement text or stand alone as its own tip. After all, some concepts just are easier to understand visually. Even if your concept isn’t specifically meant for visual digestion, you can always find creative and unique ways to use Vine to demonstrate.

Ogilvy PR (London)

The Ogilvy staff in London put together a pretty cool looping Vine that demonstrates Twitter’s new ad API and what it means for content marketing.

 

How are you using Vines?

Doing something cool with your Vines? Share your story with us in the comments.

Author: Mark Sherbin

Mark Sherbin is a freelance writer specializing in technology and content marketing. He shares occasionally insightful information at Copywriting Is Dead, where he promotes authentic communication between organizations and their audiences. Contact him at msherbin@gmail.com.

Other posts by Mark Sherbin

  • http://www.vitamincm.com VitaminCM

    Come on – Vine is worthless. The only good thing about it is that you’ll only completely waste 6 seconds of your time.

  • http://twitter.com/MarketingBuddy Buddy Scalera

    I dont know, I sort of like Vine. It forces you to tell a really concise story, so you have to strip out the fat and get to the point. There are a lot of 1:00 minute brand stories on YouTube that would be better at 6 seconds.

    • http://twitter.com/MarkSherbin Mark Sherbin

      Agreed, Buddy. It definitely forces marketers to strip the jargon and fluff and get down to the core message. As a consumer, I even find myself clicking on tweets with Vines more often than on those without, knowing that six seconds is about as long as my attention span lasts!

  • http://writtent.com/ Sasha Zinevych

    This is great – I always thought Vine is more B2C but this posts shows that it’s also B2B! Do you think B2B audience is ready to take Vine videos seriously?

  • Will

    SnipSnap, a mobile coupon startup used Vine to showcase their Android launch http://vine.co/v/bpJzwYQEz2T.

  • http://www.pravdam.com/ Kfir Pravda

    Some good ideas here, thanks for sharing. It seems that Vine can be used mainly as a teaser for other material.

  • Ali Lalouch

    Concerning the 4th tip, I don’t think it is possible to use existing videos. You can post videos to Vine with your iphone camera only.