Successfully Connect to Customers in 6 Seconds or Less with Vines

Successfully Connect to Customers in 6 Seconds or Less with Vines

Successfully Connect to Customers in 6 Seconds or Less with Vines

Launched by Twitter, Vines are succinct videos that are six seconds or less and play on a continuous loop. According to studies from Unruly Media, a branded Vine is four times as likely to be watched on Twitter than a branded video. Five Tweets per second also contain a Vine link. But perhaps most impressive is that Vine just launched in January, and in less than a year amassed tens of millions of users. It also attracts major brands, including Virgin Mobile, McDonald's, GE and more, Unruly Media reports.

With only six seconds or less to capture video and turn it into a Vine, small businesses and micro-entrepreneurs can attract new customers and keep their current ones one video at a time. Vine has proven to be a quick, inexpensive and effective way to showcase your products and services.

Vine Basics

Vine is a video-sharing app launched by Twitter. Unlike many video-sharing apps, Vine allows users to film short segments that can be linked together for six seconds or less. The videos play on a continuous loop and can be viewed in your Twitter timeline. You can also see a feed of all your friends' Vines on your Vine home page, and explore videos by interest.

Similar to Tweets, Vines are designed to be short and sweet. Currently, Vine is only available on iPhone, iPod Touch and Android platforms, with a free download from the App Store, as Twitter mentions.

Connecting With Customers Through Vine

Marketing your business in just six seconds or less can make a big impact on current and potential customers. Small Business Computing talked with Greg Jarboe, president and co-founder of SEO-PR and author of "YouTube and Video Marketing: an Hour a Day," on the importance of marketing with Vines. Jarboe pointed out Vines are ideal for "taking customers behind the scenes, demonstrating new products/services, running competitions, or simply sharing things with their community. The only requirement is imagination and creativity, not size and category."

Lowe's Home Improvement used Vine for their "Lowe's Fix in Six" series, as the Miami Herald reports, teaching home improvement techniques such as removing rust with lemon juice. Small business owners can use Vines to showcase products in action, give a behind-the-scenes look at your company, or record your launches and events, and explain how your products work.

Creating a Thriving Business, One Vine at a Time

Micro-entrepreneurs are also launching their own livelihoods through their Vine success. "Vine-ographers" are sought out by brands such as Lowe's and Virgin Mobile to create Vine advertising campaigns. Fashion photographer Meagan Cignoli has more than 315,000 Vine followers and works with major brands on campaigns, earning 90 percent of her total income this way, Shopify reports.

While Cignoli approaches her branded Vines as a director on a traditional studio shoot, others approach it with a more grassroots mindset. Virgin Mobile contracted Vine user Q Park to produce Vines from his own account with a large fan base. He signed with Vine agency Grape Story, and sees himself making a living off of Vine with the increase of advertising deals he's received.

Keeping Tabs on the Competition

Take time to see what your competitors are up to, but be mindful not to get too caught up in what they're doing. Like Bob Parsons of GoDaddy.com wrote in his blog, "Pay attention to your competitors, but pay more attention to what you're doing. When you look at your competitors, remember everything looks perfect at a distance. Even the planet Earth, if you get far enough into space, looks like a peaceful place."

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Mike is a Social Media Consultant and Blog Coach in St. Louis. He has been working with websites and the Internet since the early '90's. He is active on all of the major social networks and enjoys writing and teaching small business owners on how to leverage the Internet to promote and grow their business. Mike provides training and seminars to businesses and individuals on topics like "Content Marketing - Using Blogging + Social Media + SEO to equal Small Business Success" or "Establishing a Brand on Google+" or "How to use HootSuite to Manage Your Social Media Presence."

Mike is the author of, "The Unofficial Book On HootSuite: The #1 Tool for Social Media Management."

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