Twitter’s launch of the bite-sized video network Vine sparked a flurry of inventive creations from businesses and individuals alike. It’s long been an interesting paradox that imposing restrictions can spark the most imaginative ideas, and Vine has shown that people can convey a surprising amount of personality in a six-second loop. For businesses, it offers a fun new angle to the now-commonplace Twitter strategy.

It’s early enough in Vine’s debut that your company will want to make sure to ask some pertinent questions before hopping on the bandwagon. For brands that are ready to tackle this new platform, here are three great examples of smart approaches that we’ve already seen succeed. Between these proven strategies and some tips to spark your creativity, your business should be primed for success.

1. Cadbury UK

The British candy company is one of the more active brands on Vine. Cadbury UK has taken the approach of clever product presentations to hook viewers. Many of the popular Vine videos by individuals are stop-motion clips of food, and Cadbury has hopped on that trend. The company has produced several artistic loops of its candy that present the brand as fun and whimsical.

In addition, the videos almost always showcase the brand’s candy with its packaging. That reinforces the Cadbury name and gives potential buyers something familiar that they can connect with when they’re in stores. Even though Vine videos are short, they can still support your strategy for building brand recognition.

The lesson to take from Cadbury is to focus on what makes you original. In this case, the unique factor is its signature products, such as Creme Eggs, and its specialty items for holidays, such as Easter or Valentine’s Day candies. But your brand’s originality doesn’t have to be a product; it could be a logo, a personality, or an idea. Whatever that special thing is that differentiates your brand, be sure your Vine videos highlight it.

2. Mashable

The popular news and entertainment blog has made a conscious effort to connect its Twitter hashtags with Vine. Mashable posted several videos from the South by Southwest festival and each of them was tagged with #MashSXSW. That hashtag was used on regular tweets as well as the Vine videos, which meant that the clips from the event were included in related conversations on both social media platforms. Remember to take full advantage of the fact that Twitter and Vine are related networks. Especially if your brand already has a strong Twitter following, giving your video spots the same treatment as your tweets will help translate your readership into your viewership.

Not all of Mashable’s hashtags are centered on the brand. It also has videos tagged #vineart and #magic, intended to showcase clever and creative uses of the pint-sized videos. Mashable’s offerings include a stop-motion Pac-Man game and a rainbow of melting Crayons, but the blog is not the only source using those two hashtags. Many individuals have also adopted #vineart and #magic for sharing fun, unique projects on Vine.

Consider joining some broader discussions on Vine and Twitter. Not only will that show your awareness of trending hashtags, but it could help put your brand in front of new audiences.

3. Neiman Marcus

Retailer Neiman Marcus has used Vine to give fans a behind-the-scenes look at the fashion industry. Since the company sells such a range of labels, it has focused on using Vine to cover big events that are relevant to the style industry at large. Most of Neiman Marcus’ videos were shot at New York Fashion Week.

Highlighting special industry events is a great way to keep customers involved in your brand. Especially since attending those events is out of the question for most of your average fans, showing them snippets of the industry world can help foster interest. It also helps you control what the perspective is of your day-to-day business.

In addition, the retailer can see the reactions of potential customers before any merchandise hits its shelves. Many of Neiman Marcus’ Vine followers weighed in on the Fashion Week videos with their opinions about the trends and specific looks. Even without asking direct questions, Vine can be a source of great dialogue with your fans about your brand.

What imaginative brands have you discovered on Vine? Let us know in the comments!

[Image credits: Paul Stocker, Pete, Pete Cashmore, Ttarasiuk]