Over the past decade many social networks have passed us by without attention. Some have pioneered and had their prime, a la Myspace, and some faded away without anyone noticing or caring. Few have maintained their importance, their effectiveness, and sure enough their attachment with people. Facebook, Twitter, YouTubeto name a few, are leaders in their industry. Each one of those giant social networks have found its niche and excelled via its own competencies.
It can be argued what maintains the success of a social network, but one thing is for sure, businesses & profit speak louder than words. You see, to survive, a social network needs some source of an income, a stable income, one that will grow as its user base grows. Each one of the giant social networks has succeeded and failed in allocating a mechanism to receive this income, and that’s why businesses, organizations, brands, and their presence on this social network is a necessity for this social network. For with brands come consumers & shoppers, and with consumers comes spending. It hasn’t been a year since Instagram was acquired by Facebook for a hefty $1B, and already integrating ads and making money is in the talks and development.
Vine or @vineappwas released to the public less than a month ago. Vine was acquired by Twitter back in October 2012, and Twitter is doing the best it can to promote it. So what is Vine? Basically, Vine is a mobile service that allows you to record and share looping videos that are up to six secondslong. Much like GIFs, they are on a permanent loop, which means that users have to be creative when recording their videos if they want them to be compelling. It may seem odd to limit the clips to such a short length, but Twitter explained its reasoning for doing so via a statement announcing the new service on its official blog: “Like Tweets, the brevity of videos on Vine (6 seconds or less) inspires creativity. Now that you can easily capture motion and sound, we look forward to seeing what you create,” Twitter wrote.
The official Vine blog has further explanation of this concept: “Posts on Vine are about abbreviation — the shortened form of something larger,” the Vine blog says. “They’re little windows into the people, settings, ideas and objects that make up your life. They’re quirky, and we think that’s part of what makes them so special.”
Vine is currently only available via Apple’s App Store for use on the iPhone and iPod Touch, though Twitter says users should “stay tuned” for versions to be used on other platforms. Click this link to download Vine for free from the App Store. Just like YouTube & Vimeo, a Vine video is embedded in a tweet, meaning that if you connect your Vine account with Twitter and Vine a video, your Twitter followers will be able to watch your 6 seconds of fame on Twitter. Although the user base is growing rapidly, users are already criticizing the new technology, many claiming that it could become “annoying” if Twitter doesn’t ensure the auto-play nature of it is controlled properly, since the 6 seconds keep on looping.
Other pundits are claiming that Vine launched prematurily, i.e., not on all mobile platforms (only iOS for iPhone & iPod), not even an iPad app or an Android one. Moreover, their website is literally useless, besides having the Appstore download link and their blog. But we did find out is that users do have a unique URL to view their Vine shootscheck out how a Vine video looks on Vine’s website here on the web (our first Vine), or looping below.
Vine is not the first video-sharing service to hit social media, however. A number of other popular services are already rapidly gaining users, especially among younger users such as Keek & Socialcam.
The question here is not whether 6 seconds are enough or not, but rather usability, shareability and user engagement… Will Vine succeed? Will social media users adopt it? Will brands find a way to make money out of it?
For us at The Social Clinic, we really like the new tool and hurried up to claim our profile and start using it, check out our first Vine uploading looping above and how it looks on its dedicated URL below.