If you’ve heard of Vine and love the concept, but can’t quite figure out how to use it to promote your stuff, you, my friend, have come to the right place.
When I first saw it being used, I was watching some kid’s video. It was upside-down, looked stupid (featured high schoolers that might’ve been drunk at the mall) and made no sense.
I was like, “What is this Vine junk?”
After some careful research, however, I realized that Vine is definitely not junk. I downloaded it, played around with it, and then came up with some great ways to use it to help pimp my clients’ music, products, businesses, services and brands.
WHAT IS VINE?
Vine is a video app (compatible with iPhone and iPad) that allows users to create and share six seconds worth of looping video clips via social media.
Similar to Instagram, Vine users may follow each other and interact. People “comment,” “like,” and share their Vines via Facebook and Twitter.
To make a “Vine,” you simply launch the app and tap (a.k.a. touch) a video to create a clip. The longer the tap, the longer the clip. Each tap creates a new clip along the Vine. All footage within a Vine totals six seconds.
Then, the Vines loop and loop and loop as people go “ahhhhh” and “oooh” and “awww” and “hmm!”
6 VINE TIPS
Vine is a great — and easy — way to produce a six-second video pitch for yourself, your products or your business, but getting too caught up in the trend can be overwhelming.
Here are a few tips to keep you focused:
- Six seconds only gives you enough time to get one point across. So, just focus on one thing per Vine (if possible).
- To quote the U.S. Navy (circa 1960), “Keep it simple, stupid!”
- Don’t make your viewers dizzy. Hold that iPhone still! (Yes, I’m talking to you, Omar Epps.)
- Download VineGifR. It’s a Mac app that allows you to turn your Vines into animated .gifs that you can use on blogs, Tumblr and websites. The Vines in this article were made with VineGifR. (Thanks for the tip, Gala!)
- Use hashtags to help others find your Vines. Find popular hashtags by tapping the app’s green bar at the top, and then choose to “Explore.”
- Use sound! Silent Vines drive me nuts. Open your mouth, please! :)
BRANDS & PEOPLE THAT VINE WELL
- Tyra Banks [watch]
- The Gap [watch]
- NASCAR [watch]
- Kelly Oxford [watch]
- Urban Outfitters [watch]
- NBC News [watch]
- Toyota Espana [watch]
- Paul McCartney [watch]
- Square [watch]
- Malibu Rum [watch]
- Trident [watch]
- Jimmy Fallon [watch]
- General Electric [watch]
- Cadbury UK [watch]
- MTV Style [watch]
- Arnold [watch]
- Doritos [watch]
20 CREATIVE WAYS TO USE VINE TO PROMOTE YOUR STUFF
- Need some fun content for your “About Us” page? Gather your team and shoot short Vine intros for your team members.
- Create a teaser for your music video, tutorial or viral vid.
- Have a new toy, song or service? Shoot a quick sneak-peek Vine before its launch. [Example: Rolling Stone]
- Paper is so 1999. Use Vine as a virtual business card, flashing your Twitter name, URL and other contact info along with a quick headshot.
- Want to thank a Twitter follower or Facebook fan for something? Send them a fun thank-you Vine.
- Want to personalize your next party invite? Send your friends and fans a special Vine invite!
- Feel like showing something off? Create a Vine that shows your product and its features from different angles.
- Shoot customer impressions after using your product. [Whole Foods should totally do this at its food-tasting booths.]
- Live-tweeting an event? Create a Vine that gives your followers a behind-the-scenes peek.
- If you sell products out of a retail location (such as clothing, gadgets or flowers), make a weekly Vine featuring some of your new arrivals.
- Real estate agents: use Vine to make virtual walk-throughs of your featured properties.
- Own a restaurant? Don’t just tell your followers about your new menu, show them your food via a tasty Vine.
- Fashionistas and fashion businesses: use Vine to show off an “Outfit Of The Day.”
- Feature your work via a time-lapse Vine by recording it at different stages. (This would’ve been great marketing for The Weather Channel during Snowmaggedon. This would be fun for artists, too.)
- Want to boost your social-media presence? Run a Vine contest! Ask people to showcase your products in six seconds — best Vine wins a fun prize.
- Interior decorators and designers: use Vine to show before and after shots of your work.
- Going to a conference or a trade show? Use Vine to share a shot of your company’s booth.
- Product developers: fire up Vine and create a quick demo.
- Personal trainers, fitness instructors, yogis and dance teachers: break down some moves via Vine.
- Hair stylists: show off your handiwork by creating Vines of your best styles at the salon. Tweet your clients’ Vines out to them and ask for a RT!
VINE BEST PRACTICES TO REMEMBER
Creating Vines is a smart and cost-effective way to market yourself, your brand or your stuff — from music and art to services and products — as you enhance your social-media presence.
But, make sure you don’t get sued. (Once upon a time, both Paris Hilton and Coyote Ugly attempted to sue me, but they had to drop their cases because I’d protected myself.)
Don’t know basic media laws? Here is a crash course that’ll help you stay out of the courthouse:
- Don’t embarrass people. In some states, embarrassing someone via “off-limits details” is considered an invasion of privacy. You’ll also want to make sure you don’t portray others in a false light. [read more]
- Use your own video content. When creating a Vine, don’t record movie footage, TV clips or other copyrighted materials – music and sounds included.
- Get model releases. Your subjects might not look like Gisele, but if you’re including people in your videos (other than yourself), make sure you get signed model releases — especially if the video will be used for commercial marketing/advertising purposes. (I learned all about this while inside MTV’s “Real World: DC” house.)
- No. Naked. Kids. This might seem like a no-brainer, but don’t put naked kids in your videos. Even innocently nekkid baby butts on a beach can be mistaken for child pornography. The same law applies to using 17-year-old nude models. [read more]
- Don’t trespass. It might seem like fun, but jumping over your neighbor’s fence and making a Vine of her nightly skinny dip is also illegal. She will sue probably you and she might end up owning your company (if you don’t have a company, say good-bye to your motorcycle). [read more]
- Don’t show trademarks. If you are making a video with Vine for commercial use, then make sure you don’t show others’ trademarks. [Example: McDonald's McRib promo t-shirt]
- Stay off of O.P.P. If you are shooting a Vine, and you are on someone else’s property, make sure you get written consent to do so from the person in possession of the property. See also: Don’t trespass.
- Don’t defame anyone. If you say something that isn’t true about a person that’s not famous (a.k.a in the public eye) you might get sued for defamation of character. Not famous? Be happy, the law protects you. Celebs get it daily and can’t do much about it unless they can prove “actual malice.” [read more]
- Twitter’s Vine App: How To Use It
- 5 Best Practices For Brands Using Vine
- How To Use Vine [mashable]
- How To Use Vine [pcmag]
- Vine: Twitter’s New App
- The Do’s & Don’ts Of Using Vine For Marketing
- 16 Ways Businesses Are Using Twitter Vine For Business
- Vine For Health-Care Marketing
Photos via Gala Darling