Vine didn’t create the video, but it did reinvent the way that we compose videos. No longer was 5 or 10 minute videos the norm. It was 6 seconds. It forced users to be creative and even birthed “Vine Celebrities.” Recently, Vine (who is owned by Twitter) announced that they were closing it’s doors and discontinuing the mobile app. This is a big and somewhat of an abrupt announcement but for many who were aware, it was a slow and gradual death. We decided to ask some entrepreneurs and business owners how this announcement would affect them and even their business colleagues.
1) All Their Eggs in the Vine Basket
Vine shutting down is primarily going to negatively impact businesses that had all their eggs in the Vine basket. As digital marketers, it is important to be where the attention is and cross-promote within those areas. For the businesses that were able to drive their Vine followers to other platforms such as Snapchat, Instagram, etc. they will not see as big of a negative impact.
2) It Was Happening for a While
I am co-founder of a new video platform and work personally with a few dozen of the top Vine stars. Vine was already a shadow of its former self. It has only 10-20% of the audience it had at its peak in 2014. But it was still an important venue for reaching teens: Vine’s fanbase was always strongest in the 14-17 age bracket. So for the majority of business owners, the impact will be minimal. In fact, most businesses never established much of a Vine presence in the first place, and this was part of why Vine failed as a business. For businesses that rely heavily on teen customers, losing Vine will leave a vacuum, but it presents an excellent opportunity to reevaluate the landscape of social media platforms for teens. The seemingly obvious option is Snapchat, but creating ephemeral content that plays well on Snapchat is a challenge that requires special expertise. Plus Snapchat’s odd vertical video format is a bad fit for businesses accustomed to creating content in the standard 16:9 aspect ratio — or perhaps in the square format of Instagram and Vine. Another app with a teen following is Musically, but it also has the vertical video problem. Instagram is a far smarter choice for businesses. It still has an insanely strong engagement rate with teens. Instagram and Snapchat are the two apps that teens are most likely to be obsessed with. And Instagram is a way better fit for businesses: it has a much simpler system for buying ads, more transparent analytics, more familiar aspect ratios for content (square and 16:9), and a culture that is more geared toward shopping, products, and branded content. Teens go to Snapchat mostly to communicate with their friends; teens go to Instagram to see their friends’ content but also to see the latest fashion and beauty tips or the latest skateboarding videos.Business owners should also heed the advice of Gary Vaynerchuk, who always urges brands to jump on new platforms right when they first emerge. Early adopters frequently become the major players on a platform if it takes off.
3) Using Other Platforms
The sudden shutdown of Vine means that entrepreneurs should start utilizing other video streaming sites for their audiences. Create the same great content that keeps audiences coming back for more, but use different platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and even Periscope for real-time videos. I also advise backing up any video content you have already created on Vine, in the event that the site should fully vanish, as a precaution to ensuring your hard work has been saved.
4) Surprised but Not Shocked
I am surprised they are shutting down so soon, but not shocked. A lot of my small business clients had tried to utilize Vine for brand awareness, but found that Facebook live feeds were much better for engagement than a video on Twitter. After negligible results from a few case studies, most of the Twitter outreach my clients focus on is text/link based, so I don’t see this impacting their marketing plans greatly.
Thanks to Rebecca Harpain, Dual Arrow Marketing
5) Another Reminder to Cross Promote
I don’t think it’s a huge announcement for the average business owner (unless Vine’s average user was within your target market). However, I do think one of the biggest things Vine’s death reminded everyone of is that when using social media sites you are merely renting space. You don’t actually own the platform. Whether it is Facebook when they implemented changes that resulted in a decline to the organic reach of posts or any other social media site closing it’s doors, this announcement is another reminder that things change fairly quickly and to “win” at digital marketing, you must continue to promote across different platforms and continue to grow and build your list. Many of the “Vine Stars” were already building their followings on Snapchat or Instagram so they weren’t impacted nearly as bad as they could have been. Being on the offense is the key to succeed.
Thanks to Gresham Harkless, Blue 16 Media
What do you think? How will Vine’s Closing Affect Entrepreneurs & Business Owners? Continue the conversation HERE.