Personally, I'm a fan of Instagram Video over Vine. I just can't get into the never-ending loop that Vine features. While both services have their pros and cons, one of the major pros of Vine is that it shows up in Twitter news feeds. In order to view Instagram videos you have to go directly to the Instagram app.
I'm always looking for ways that brands can use social media applications to engage their customers and fans. Honda just set the bar high for anyone looking to use Vine as a means of communication and engagement.
The Honda #WantNewCar Promotion
Honda, in an effort to promote its national Honda Summer Clearance Event, took to the Internet to engage people and offer them some special deals. Users were encouraged to tell Honda why it is they want a new car, and to do so by using the hashtag #WantNewCar. Now, this in itself would have been a good promotion. A huge name like Honda branding its own hashtag would have given them a ton of insight into their Twitter following and why their users want a new car. It's like free market research.
Honda took this one step further and responded to people through Vine. Not only were these personalized videos highly targeted, they were also very clever. One even used Internet celebrity Rebecca Black, of "Friday" fame.
— Honda (@Honda) July 15, 2013
If you visit their Twitter page you will see all the Vine videos on the left hand side bar or in their media grid.
Of course, Honda could have used Instagram video as well. However, according to Honda, they didn't know what to do with those extra 8 seconds.
I'm not sure if this is the real reason or if Honda did some sort of partnership with Vine, but regardless—it works.
Why This Works
It's real-time and it's video. These are two important aspects of social media and they're also what make social media such a strong contender in advertising and marketing.
How You Can Use Vine
The same way that Honda did! By giving your audience something in return, you're showing them you care and you're engaged in their engagement. (Yea, I said it.) Engagement is the key to success in social media marketing.
If you're a clothing store, you can respond to a person who asks about the brands you carry, with a video of your store or of your sales rack. If you're a plumber and you've found someone online who's looking for a plumber, you can use Vine to introduce yourself and express your love of toilets. If you're a life coach, you can give advice via Vine in short form. Being creative about your methods of communication, and engaging well when put on the spot, is going to make you stand out, so go ahead—play around a bit.
Have you seen other companies using Vine?