It’s being called the next big thing in social media, and its name can conjure up images of wine country or perhaps Wrigley Field. But I assure you that Vine, a new mobile app from Twitter, has absolutely nothing to do with alcohol or baseball, at least on the surface.
While Vine is most simply described as Instagram for video, I’ll go a little more in-depth.
Vine allows people with smart phones to capture six-second looping videos and share them on their social media pages. Built to live in a mobile world, Vine videos have the look and feel of GIF files, as they loop automatically. The videos can have more than one shot. In fact, users can cram as many shots as they want into the six seconds. Check out our Vine video to see this capability.
Now that we know what Vine is, let’s discuss what kind of impact it will make on the already-clogged social media universe. While Vine will undoubtedly create more opportunities for people to cram their social media channels with videos of their cats, we believe it has the potential to leave a mark – especially in media and business circles.
Vine will make its greatest impact on the way news is gathered. First there was Twitter (text), then there was Instagram (still photos). Now with Vine, people can immediately share videos with social media followers. News cameras can’t be everywhere. That’s why this new app seems custom-made for citizen journalists and news organizations seeking access to real-time news. Don’t be surprised if, in the near future, you see TV news stations using Vine to help tell stories, especially for unplanned and breaking news events.
Some companies have already added Vine to their social media arsenals. Wheat Thins, GE and Red Vines have already posted promoted Tweets with Vine videos attached. While Vine can be a fun and interactive mechanism for brands, it is also something companies should monitor closely. A six second video is all it takes to harm an organization’s reputation.
Don’t worry about being an early adopter of this new technology if you don’t feel inspired. But if you work in the news media or corporate branding, you might want to download the Vine app (it’s free) and familiarize yourself with it. Already in the top 15 free downloads for Apple, Vine isn’t going anywhere, at least for now.