App Savvy: Our Best Tips For Making The Most of Vine


Much has been made of the social media app du jour – Vine. It was a ubiquitous presence at NYFW, giving us a peek into how many of the designer collections actually looked coming down the runway – right from our phones.

We spoke with some of NYFW's biggest vine-ers recently, who agreed that the app is appealing for it's dynamic video element, the increasing popularity of the gif medium and our generations waning attention spans. A six-second video is just long enough to create something cool and short enough not to bore your followers.

Runway footage was sort of a no-brainer for the fashion set on Vine – but what now? Brands have been using Vine to share creative advertising campaigns and launch products, so how can bloggers master this medium and capitalize on it's viral success?

From our own road-testing and research, here are our best tips for creating fun, engaging Vines for your followers.

1. Lighting & stillness!

We discovered this early on, and Mashable's helpful Vine video echoed the same sentiment – a well-lit setting is ideal for a successful Vine (and any photo, for that matter). Also, as with any good photo or video, a steady hand (or a tripod) will give you the clearest image.

2. Can you tell a story?

The fun of video is how it can make a scene or a moment come to life. Can you create a Vine with a beginning, middle and end? Show something from multiple perspectives? Bring an event to life with atmosphere and details? With the stop-and-go ability of Vine there's so much potential for creativity – so don't be afraid to experiment.

3. Try stop-motion.

Instead of keeping your finger pressed on the touch screen for the full six seconds, try pressing and releasing to create a stop-motion video. You can have so much creative fun with stop-motion, from moving around an object or place to show a 360-degree view (like this one I made), or keeping your camera in one place but re-arranging what you see in front of it. (What if you laid out your #OOTD piece by piece on your bed until the complete outfit was displayed, for example?)

4. Consider sound.

While many of your followers may have the sound off on their phones when browsing Vine, your videos will still have sound in them. If you want silence, find a controlled environment (and don't breath too loudly near your mic!), or shoot indoors. To add purposeful sound with your voice, you can use the mic that comes with your Apple headphones.

5. Think before you start.

Part of the fun and authenticity of Vine is that you can't upload something you've already made, edit your videos, or go backwards once you get started. You've got to finish it and post or start from the beginning again. For this reason, think about the story you want to tell before you press that screen. Will you move or will the scene move? How long should you linger on each shot?

6. Share, share, share!

In these early stages, it's important to use your other social media channels to promote your presence on Vine. Twitter is the obvious first option, since they own Vine. Share your Vines to Twitter to allow your followers there to see what you're creating. Why not screen-capture your Vine profile and post the image to Instagram for some easy cross-promotion? You can also create a gif for the web from a Vine, and Photojojo has easy instructions on how to embed it into the HTML code of a site.


Much like Instagram, Vine is about sharing what's happening in the moment. It's a live peek into your life and the lives of those you follow. Get creative, have fun with it and explore the hashtags to get ideas for your videos.

*For more really helpful Vine tips and inspiring examples, we love this post from Photojojo, and the Vine tag on Mashable is contantly being updated with new stories.

Are you using Vine? What do you think makes a great six-second experience?

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7 Responses

  1. Anna Sullivan

    I love vine and believe it to be really big really soon.
    My blog Flawlessly Flawed along with Creative Cargo just launched a vine video a day challenge that’s fashion based (but also for those Instagram lovers). I would live if everyone participated! Here’s the link….

  2. Chelsey

    Sometimes I forget about Vine (I’m a bit of an app hoarder), but once I open it I fall into the vortex just like with Instagram and Twitter. I can definitely see this becoming big as the year goes on. Great tip about the sound! I’m one of those people who keeps the sound off when the app is open.

  3. Sarah's Real Life

    Vine is so fun! I’ve only made a couple videos because I’m trying to make them GOOD. These are all great tips to keep in mind so Vine stays creative and interesting for everyone. So far my videos have just been personal, not blog related but I’m hoping to change that soon.

    ~Sarah of Sarah’s Real Life
    P.S. My Vine username is SarahsRealLife if anyone would like to follow 🙂 I’m looking for some fun people to check out!