Dom Hofmann has some nice ideas, but let’s take a look at how V2 can succeed where Vine failed.
When Twitter shut quirky video app Vine down in 2016, many people lamented the loss of one of the weirder corners of the Internet, myself included! Just recently, however, Twitter co-founder Dom Hofmann hinted that he may be about to drop a new Vine on the world, and then followed that up with a logo for something called “V2” that looked ominously like the Vine logo. This all seems like good news for lovers of the 6.5 second video network, but it’s worth remembering that Vine went away for a reason. Let’s look at how V2 can succeed where Vine failed.
How V2 Can Succeed Where Vine Failed
There are a number of factors that contributed to untimely demise of what was a very young app. Vine was barely three years old when it was closed, a shocking fact for such a popular app. Now, while Hofmann and his co-conspirators can hardly be blamed for Vine’s downfall (they sold the app to Twitter before it had even officially launched), Dom will need to learn from previous mistakes.
One thing you will hear many former Viners complain about is the negativity that crept into the comment sections and videos towards the end. There was very little in the way of support to stop things like abuse or bullying. Now, anyone watching the train wreck that is Twitter of late will know the perils of trying to wrap everyone in bubble wrap. That being said, V2 will need to do better than Vine did. No one wants to use an app just to get abused.
One thing that was a major factor in Vine’s waning popularity was the exodus of talent. Many big name Viners left the app for greener pastures, like YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat. Of course, with many of the popular Viners gone, the number of people watching Vines dropper.
Now, I’m not saying V2 should pander to the bigger names and forget the rest. Nor am I saying they should implement a Twitch-style tipping system. But it should offer users the tools to leverage their popularity. Something as simple as being able to swipe up in Instagram stories to get links gives a user a simple way to promote things.
Again, pampering the bigger talents while ignoring the lesser known ones is bad plan, but when someone hits critical mass, you want them to want to stay on your platform.
The Business Plan
Vine was losing viewers towards the end, no doubt, but it was still getting some serious traffic. Make no mistake; if Vine had not been costing Twitter money to run, it would still be here today. One of the big problems facing any social media app is finding a way to make money without scaring away the user base. Vine tackled that issue by simply not making money. That might fly for a while, especially if you’re owned by a larger company, but eventually you need to pay your own bills.
The most obvious plan would be to have sponsored Vines (or whatever V2 ends up calling its posts). Much like Twitter and Instagram, having one in ten videos be a sponsored ad might be a bit of a turn off for users, but if the alternative is no V2 at all, maybe take that risk.
So there we have it. My thoughts on how V2 can succeed where Vine failed. And if I turn out to be right, I’ll be printing this post out to take to my job interview for V2s head business manager!
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