Just in case you need any further convincing that you should give Vine, Instagram or other social video platforms a go, here’s a handy guide to why social video is important for brands.

Video works

Video is one of the most persuasive of all visual tools as it’s capable of delivering large amounts of information quickly and clearly. Especially if the information is about a new service or product. 

If you’re talking about a product that someone wants to explore, it’s a step or two short of being able to put that product in their hands. 

Accessible to everybody

As social video apps are mobile-first, anyone with a smartphone can access your content, and anyone with a smartphone can make a Vine or an Instagram. This basically means anyone in the world can access your content.

Looking back now, this was an incredible thing. Vine was a low budget filmmakers dream. It completely democratised filmmaking. It’s accessible to everyone and it’s made indie filmmakers of us all. 

Easy for beginners

It’s really easy to get started with Vine and Instagram, sign-up takes a few seconds. All you need is a phone and a little imagination.

It’s free, or at least as cheap as you want it to be

There’s no cost involved, if you have zero budget, it doesn’t matter, work around it. Some of the best branded Vines clearly cost no money at all, so theoretically, the people in charge of your marketing budgets shouldn’t really need much persuading. Just get out there on your lunch break and give it a go.

Promotes trust

Video can help build trust. If you feature your own face, or the face of an employee in a video, a viewer is more likely to trust your brand, and on social integrity and authenticity is everything.

Marketing beyond marketing

Short-form videos run the whole spectrum of creativity. They’re not just for promotional content, they can also be entertaining, innovative, instructional or informative. If you get the tone right, you’re video will be shared beyond your own audience’s reach.

Social at its core

Before the launch of Vine we were all used to filming videos on our smartphones and showing them to our friends. With these apps, suddenly we have a much wider audience, because they aren’t merely video making tools.

As soon as you make a Vine or an Instagram it is immediately uploaded to your network of followers, therefore community and social sharing is an integral part of the package.

Just like Facebook or Twitter, you should Comment, Share, Like, Revine, Regram, whatever it takes to build a loyal audience. Encourage users to make Vines for your brand, run a competition for them. This will give them an audience, and this will in turn help build yours and make you an integral part of the community.

Instagram stats

  • Instagram has 300m monthly active users
  • The average Instagram user spends 21 minutes per day using the app
  • The app is more popular among younger people, with usage at 41% among those aged 16-24 and at 35% among 24-34s

Vine stats

Vine has less users, but its still a considerable audience…

  • 40m users
  • 100m people watch Vines every month
  • 12m Vines are uploaded to Twitter daily
  • 31.8% of US teenagers use Vine

The audience for social video, is young, engaged and will share the heck out of anything they really like. If this is the audience that you’re after, then it’s vital that you should be on Vine or Instagram.

Instagram smashes Twitter for engagement

I’m sure you’re all using Twitter, you understand the value of Twitter and you get why it works.

Well…

Of the top 25 brands, the average post engagement rate is 3.31% on Instagram compared to 0.07% on Twitter.

Furthermore, average profile interactions were 19m on Instagram vs. 502,000 on Twitter.

Instagram or Vine or both?

Instagram and Vine have managed to remain unique in their own way, with brands tending to choose one or the other platform based on where its audience is, what kind of content they have and their tone of voice. 

It’s therefore up to you to experiment with which one is right for you. For instance you might find that if you’re a luxury brand, Instagram might be more suitable.

If you want some killer advice on how to improve your own social video efforts then check out these best practice guides: how brands can be brilliant at Vine and how brands can be brilliant at Instagram video.

Christopher Ratcliff

Published 19 May, 2015 by Christopher Ratcliff

Christopher Ratcliff is the editor of Methods Unsound. He was the Deputy Editor of Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via Google+ and LinkedIn

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Comments (1)

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Julie Ho, Content Specialist at Wideo

Really enjoyed this article! You made a great point about social video costing nothing or as much as you want it to. Free editing tools only make it possible to create beautiful video on a budget; that doesn't mean that the results are reflected in that. Your biggest limit is creativity.

A couple social video creation tools:
Stop motion - https://itunes.apple.com/en/app/stop-motion-studio/id441651297?mt=8
Animated video - https://wideo.co/
Gifs - licecap.en.softonic.com
Screencasts - www.screencast-o-matic.com

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