If you are an avid social media user, chances are that you have noticed an explosion of Vine videos on your feeds at some point. For those of you who don’t know what Vine is, let’s step back a second. Purchased and owned by Twitter, Vine was initially released in January 2013 and is a video making app that is available for iOS, Android, and (unofficially) Windows Phone. All you need to do is go to the app store and download it for free. The program captures sound and video with its in-app camera, and a user is limited to six seconds (it doesn’t have to be a consecutive shot, however) when creating a video. Given its simplicity and ability to create content quickly, companies of all sizes have already started using Vine to jumpstart advertising campaigns. These are big name companies, too—General Electric, Gap, Calvin Klein, and the list goes on. If you haven’t already, now’s the time to sign up your ecommerce store for the Vine express! Here’s how you can use Vine to support your online store.
Crowdsourced Content and Viral Branding with Interactive Contests
Consumers these days love to be noticed by their fellow peers. You’ve definitely seen contests where users submit pictures to social media under a hashtag and potentially receive prizes for their entries. This same strategy can apply to Vine, but Vine’s video and sound technology allow users do be much more imaginative.
Let’s examine a Vine campaign run by Urban Outfitters and Converse. Under the #YourChucks hashtag on Twitter, the two companies encouraged consumers to submit creative Vine videos for contest prizes. Now let’s say that you are a crafty contestant with a killer video and tons of social media followers. After you send in your video, all of your followers will be exposed to the Chuck Taylor brand through the hashtag, have some laughs and smiles at your video, and possibly be intrigued to the point of clicking on the hashtag to see other submissions. Ideally, a number of your followers will go ahead with their own creations, and what you now have is a viral Vine campaign. People want to be challenged creatively, and having contests like this one can help form a bond between your ecommerce store and the consumer.
Just how viral can Vine videos become? A recent study shows that five Vine videos are shared on Twitter every second. Furthermore, branded Vines are four times more likely to be shared that branded online videos.
You also don’t have to focus on a single item for Vine submissions. Try to be creative in what you ask of the consumer. Do you run an online food store? Encourage people to create a stop motion video featuring various edibles in creative arrangements. Do you offer a wide range of clothing accessories? Have your customers make Vine videos of themselves dressing up creatively. The list goes on.
Easy Ad Creation
Companies can spend thousands and even millions on TV ad campaigns, and that doesn’t even factor in production costs. Meanwhile, you just have a small online store that’s looking to make its big breakthrough. Vine, with its ease of use and low costs, can even the field and help you reach your market. Let’s say that you have a new product. If you want to get the word out to your social media following, all you need to do is pull out your smartphone, put your product on a stage, and push and hold a button. All of a sudden, you’ve got an ad! These ads don’t necessarily have to be well thought out. For most of the time, just think of Vine as a means of getting the word out on the cheap. If you want to specifically highlight a product, you can create Vine videos that show its key features.
One of the Vine’s strengths is that each Vine video is simple and can be loaded quickly. People who click on Vine links don’t expect tedious load times, high production values, or long introductions. It’s direct, distilled content available for easy consumption, so you can create as many videos you need for any given product.
Offer Insights and Creative Uses for Your Products
In addition to highlighting certain product features, you can use Vine to deliver demos and tutorials. A number of companies have entire Vine series devoted to tips. For instance, Bacardi showcased ways to make the perfect cocktail and a number of special drink recipes. It is another great way to engage with your customers.
If you are feeling more creative, you can send your audience videos that feature your products being used in unorthodox ways. Everyone loves a good life hack. You think you know everything about a product, and all of a sudden, a video or link comes out that completely blows your mind. Oreo in particular has been quite stellar at putting together Vine videos that showcase its cookies creatively. A couple of examples from the company include using a pepper shaker to create an ice cream topping and turning Oreos into cookie cubes. There’s even a hashtag to go along with these posts, further encouraging viewers to come up with crazy ideas on their own and sharing them across social media.
The second option may be harder to do with ecommerce stores that deal with more conventional goods, but in the end, you are limited by your own creativity. Who knows? If you have an idea good enough, it may go viral and take the nation by storm.
Provide behind the Scenes Content for Your Followers
Chances are that if someone is following you on social media, that person is more invested in your company than the average consumer. So why not reward those types of people with special content on Vine? It’s a good way to further establish relationships with customers and solidify your brand.
It’s always fun to see how businesses operate and what staff members are like, and you can use Vine to take quick videos of daily life at the office. Behind the logo, company, store front, and brand are regular people. If you highlight them, it helps customers attach a human face to your store, which results in a more trusting relationship. Does one of your workers have a quirky habit? Throw a video up on Vine that showcases it, and your fans will be amused. Additionally, you can give brief tours of your facilities, show how you process online orders, and send out teasers for new products and services. Your goal is to build trustworthy connections with your strong supporters and key influencers.
Behind the scenes content can also help you reach new loyal followers. Say that you have exclusive happenings for the most loyal core of your customer base. You can take Vine videos of said events, post them, and a number of attendees will share that content across social media. As a result, the attendees’ followers will learn about these special deals and possibly become inspired to more closely monitor your brand. It’s a great, easy way to build recognition in the age of social media.