Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams appearing in a viral vine video.

Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams appearing in a viral Vine video.

Odds are you’ve seen a Vine video even if you haven’t heard of Twitter’s six-second video app. After the shocking penultimate episode of the recent season of HBO’s Games of Thrones the Twittersphere blew up with reactions from devastated viewers.

One of the best posts came from series star Maisie Williams, who posted a funny Vine video in reaction to the events in the episode. Millions watched it, including many who’d never heard of the social media platform.

Vine is the number one free app in North American iTunes stores and last week it was launched on Android. The app is also making headlines by surpassing Instagram in daily Twitter shares, with more than five Vine videos shared every second.

But what makes Vine different from other social media platforms? Creative brands have discovered that Vine’s six-second video format is perfect for educating customers about their products and services.

Here are some of the best examples of educational Vine posts that are earning brands real results:

Lowes

Lowes, the home improvement store, has consistently released attention-grabbing Vine videos using the hashtag #lowesfixinsix.

The videos showcase helpful ways to do common home improvement tasks more efficiently and they’ve been getting hundreds of likes each (which by Vine standards, is pretty high).

Urban Outfitters

Urban Outfitters sells clothing, accessories and nifty items to trendy types (okay, hipsters) and has more than 40,000 followers on Vine. The brand regularly posts videos showcasing the company and its products and behind-the-scenes videos from events.

One of the brand’s most popular posts is a how-to video explaining what in the world “hair chalk” is and how it works. The video garnered an impressive 1746 likes.

Oreo

The iconic cookie brand is currently using Vine to post clips from its #wonderfilled campaign events in New York. Those videos haven’t been too popular, earning fewer  than 50 likes each.

On the other hand, Oreo’s earlier Vines showcased what the brand called #OreaSnackHacks – unique ways to eat the cookies. Those videos pulled in hundreds of likes because they taught viewers something interesting and tasty.

Cadbury

The British chocolate brand Cadbury also shares snack tips with its #CadburyKitchen recipes hashtag. For example, fans can learn how to make “Brooksters,” which are half brownie, half cookie, and fully delicious.

Etsy

Etsy is an online shop for handmade items, specializing in fashion and accessories. One of its most popular Vines shows followers how to create unique DIY projects with erasers, fabric and paint.

Lucky Magazine

Lucky Magazine has created numerous educational videos on Vine with the hashtag #lessonsinlayering. These videos have made the New York fashion publication one of the most popular brands on Vine, with more than 8,000 followers.

Lucky is an example of a brand that seems to have found its social media sweet spot on Vine. Contrast the magazine with Oreo, which has a respectable 3,000 or so Vine followers, but more than 33 million Facebook likes. Lucky Magazine has only 248,000 or so Facebook likes but more than 8,000 people following their helpful and entertaining Vines.

Major League Baseball

The MLB has a large Vine following of 57,000 and rising. They regularly post clips of games and practices and stop-motion videos featuring MLB-related products.

Their most successful video, however, is a purely educational one that shows fans what a baseball is made of and more than 3,000 people have liked what they learned.

Peanut Butter Co.

Perhaps the most tangible Vine success story so far comes from Peanut Butter Co., a small American peanut butter company with 12 employees. The brand shared a video on National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day (April 2, look it up!), showing fans how to make a great PB&J sandwich.

The six-second clip, which ends with a frame of a downloadable coupon, went viral with more than 300,000 views.

As a result of the campaign, more than 6,000 coupons were downloaded, demonstrating that educational brand Vines – even if they simply show people how to make a sandwich – can lead to some real return on investment.