The Mobile Video Explosion: What Advertisers Can Learn From Vine

Written on
Sep 4, 2013 
Richard L. Tso  |

ADOTAS — Call them the jokesters, the show-offs, the comedians, the earnest – these people have all found their voice on the video social network Vine. These days people’s attention spans are virtually nonexistent, and some advertisers are finding success in providing short-form content to entice consumers to want more.

In this age of 140-characters tweets, and witty status updates, the six-second videos on Vine offer just the right amount of content to grab a user’s attention and whet their appetites for them to click through to additional information and content.

“Vine is the ultimate ‘lean’ tool for entertainers and marketers,”wrote Julie Anderson on Medium.com, who believes it is “crack for drama kids.”

Vine’s video clip sharing service was recently snatched up by Twitter and just surpassed 40 million users. But while marketers are flocking to Vine to watch clips, they should be using the service to learn a few things about driving brand engagement in a fun, and sometimes gritty, way.

Mat Honan, a writer for Wired, is smitten with Vine, noting in a recent piece, “They have something that trumps quality, which is authenticity. That authenticity is driving a distinct emerging culture.”

It may be time for brands and agencies to put down the remote and pick up the (smart)phone to create a more authentic brand story where consumers are spending more and more of their time – on the small screen.

On the other hand, David Berkowitz mentions in his article on AdAge, “At this point, as a marketer, the time you spend on Vine should be less for sharing short videos there and more for understanding what this subculture can teach you about reaching consumers.”

Berkowitz sites an example of one brand’s success, Warner’s Bras,  which has accumulated over 4,200 followers on Vine. The company’s uptick comes from its posts that incorporate Vine celebrities like Meagan Cignoli (332,000 followers), Jessica Cook (338,000 followers) and Curtis Lepore (1.1 million followers). One post generated 85,000 likes and 24,000 shares. Not too shabby for a short six-second clip from a brand that’s not exactly a household name.

The mobile video ad trend has taken off this year, with Pandora moving to its emerging :15 and :30 video ad spots to drive revenues for its ailing music streaming business. Much to the delight of executives, the company’s foray into mobile ads helped the company right itself last quarter.

Pandora has launched pilot mobile video campaigns for brands like Taco Bell, BMW, Target and USA Network.

“I think when you think about video, it’s always audience,” said Heidi Browning, SVP of strategic solutions at Pandora. “When you think about TV and video advertising, it’s about how to get your message or story in front an audience at scale.”

Richard L. Tso is a reporter for Adotas and an avid writer covering the intersection of technology and advertising, fashion and music. With over 12 years of experience in the Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations industries, Richard has held executive positions at global agencies and technology companies and is founder of the interactive communications firm Pseudosound Consulting LLC. A classical cellist and painter, he believes that sometimes sound carries more weight than words. He is a graduate of Stanford University.

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