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Vine: The new kid on the sweepstakes and contests block

February 7, 2013

The video-based social media site Vine is less than a month old, so I haven’t seen any contests or sweepstakes crop up, but it’s only a matter of time until companies take advantage of this inventive, highly visual social media application as a platform for marketing their sweepstakes.

Vine allows Twitter users to create and upload a six-second video. I think those who sponsor, create, or enter sweepstakes and contests will really enjoy this new feature and quickly view Vine as a welcome addition to their promotions.

For example, sponsors who are looking for real-life examples of customers using their products will find Vine’s mini-video to be a major step forward over still photos. For creators of sweepstakes and contests, Vine adds another tool for making their promotions more attractive to users, who are rapidly becoming more comfortable creating videos and looking for opportunities to demonstrate their creativity with video entries. And users will find Vine to be a simple way to create a video. Because of the limited length of the end product, using Vine is doesn’t require a huge commitment of time.

Vine appears to be very simple to use. The site has a straightforward “get started” video that many users will find helpful. The learning curve is also shortened because Vine is similar to the video feature on many smart phones, but it does have some capabilities that most phones don’t have, such as recording in slow motion.

Here’s a great roundup of creative uses of Vine in its first month out, with several contributions from Twitter corporate design specialist Ian Padgeham, who’s creating some incredible short animations.

From my quick review, it doesn’t appear that Vine’s Terms of Service addresses the use of Vine in sweepstakes or contests. But sponsors, creators, and users should be on the lookout for guidelines about this use in the future. In the meantime, it will be interesting to see how soon we start seeing Vine as a common feature in sweepstakes and contests.

Dale Joerling is the chair of Thompson Coburn’s Advertising, Marketing and Promotion Law group. He is editorial director of the Sweepstakes Law Blog. You can reach Dale at (314) 552-6058 or djoerling@thompsoncoburn.com.