Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Why Vine could be the next big thing for brands

For CMOs, new social technologies present an opportunity to gain unique strategic advantages in their market. As a master’s student in the Northwestern Medill IMC program, we study new social media and have found Twitter’s short form video application, Vine, to have interesting marketing capabilities. In spite of the app’s January porn snafu, Vine became the #1 free app on the U.S. App Store within three months of its launch. With Twitter’s advertising capabilities gaining credibility and Vine developing momentum, Vine is positioned to become a valuable branding tool.

Across the web, mobile video and content marketing are on the rise, and AllTwitter’s Shea Bennett argues that these trends bode well for the future of Vine marketing. Bennett notes that mobile video is expected to represent 66% of global mobile traffic by 2017, up from 51% in 2012. For marketers, this growth category presents a great opportunity. In fact, 87% of advertisers already use video for content marketing.
Infographic Source: http://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/vine-marketing_b39141

VP of Marketing at Skyword, Patricia Travaline, makes the case for content marketing, noting that consumers today are exposed to around 3,000 brand impressions each day and their average attention span is 8 seconds. Travaline’s “Three S Model” for content marketing dictates that marketers need to create searchable, snackable, and shareable branded content if they want to actually impact consumers. In other words, successful content marketing must speak to relevant trends, make an impression quickly, and compel consumers to spread the content.

With mobile video and content marketing on the rise, six-second videos may be the ideal vehicle for attention grabbing, entertaining brand messaging. Some fearless brands have already made good use of the platform and are developing ‘best practices’ for future Vine marketers (see the "Tweaser" and the “#ComedyFest”). From my examination of these articles and my studies at Northwestern, there are three action items you should implement if you venture into Vine branding. They are:

1) Tell a relevant story - If your Vine doesn’t have an arc, then it’s simply a moving Instagram. If your arc doesn’t matter to your target consumer, then you’re wasting your efforts.

2) Engage in a conversation - Use a Vine hashtag. Allow users to upload their own Vines. Create branded Vines to respond to your followers.

3) Share and Track - Don’t expect all of your fans to find your post on Vine. It is still very new. Vine’s can be embedded onto any website, so share it elsewhere to increase viewership, and track across all platforms to determine what content sticks.

Melissa Channick is a recent Northwestern graduate and current master’s student in Northwestern’s Medill School studying Integrated Marketing Communications. She is passionate about discovering consumer insights and is looking forward to starting a career in digital marketing strategy upon graduation in August 2013. Follow her @Mchannick

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