If you’ve viewed vines on Twitter or Facebook, or even had a go at shooting a vine yourself, you could be forgiven for thinking Vine is a just a fun tool for novelty videos, where people make their pets fly or show inanimate objects crawling across the room. However for businesses Vine does have a great deal of potential. The informal style of the videos often masks the fact that you can communicate a huge amount of information in six seconds, making Vine a superb way to engage your customers and market your business.
Here are a few practical ways you can use Vine to promote your business:
- Showcase your products. What better way to show your latest product range in action than in a viral vine? Link your products to a particular sporting event, a special day such as Father’s Day or a bank holiday, or hot topics in the news. If the weekend weather will be hot show off your range of barbecues or bikinis, if it will be a wet one get filming the umbrellas and wellies. Alternatively create a teaser or trailer for a product or service that is about to be launched.
- Invite Vine reviews. Video reviews have far more impact than written reviews, but asking a customer to create a full length video can be a bit much. Instead run a customer competition where they can create their own vine review, perhaps showing your product in action, or filming handwritten signs explaining what’s so great about your service.
- Display a Vine portfolio. Many businesses use images on their websites to show examples of their work, but imagine how much better a vine would be. Show the progress of a particular project or piece of work from the design or conceptualisation, to the finished article. This would work particularly well for a construction or refurbishment related business.
- Show the face of your business. Social media is a great way to personally interact with your customers in a world where business is often faceless. Whether you want to create a vine tour of your office, or just film a group of employees having a great time, a vine can help to give your business a personality.
- Capture your story. Most businesses have an ‘about us’ page but sadly customers don’t always take the time to read it. Consider supplementing it with a vine that tells the story of your business visually in just six seconds, and you can be sure your visitors will have time to watch.
- Create a character. Associating a particular character with your business makes it more memorable. Just think of the enduring popularity of the Andrex Puppy or the PG tea monkeys. Vines are a simple way to link a particular character with your brand, and using the same character each time is a great way to make your vines go viral. Use hashtags such as #cute to promote your vine character.
- Ask for customer opinions. Using a vine to ask a question is a superb way to engage your audience, and you can then create another vine using their answers. One possibility would be to ask your customers to vote on the features of a product to be launched, for example what colours, patterns, or flavours should be available.
- Educate your audience. How-to style videos that pass on valuable skills are always attractive to viewers and will help to build your credibility if done properly. If you can teach your audience how to do something useful in just six seconds you’re one step closer to converting them into customers.
- Promote business events. If you’re planning a particular event such as a conference, a stand at a trade exhibition, or a webinar, a vine can be a great way to publicise it and to improve the return on your investment. A progressive brainstorm or hand drawn doodle outlining the content of a webinar, or the benefits of attending an event, is a particularly effective style of vine.
Vine is a very simple tool for creating short, highly visual, and far reaching messages. Despite the fact that it works best with basic effects and an almost amateurish style, business shouldn’t overlook the huge potential that well-designed vines have for capturing their customers’ attention, and building their brand.
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