How Vine Changed a Musician’s Life

By Daniela Ibarra


Billboard – Shawn Mendes

Six seconds. That’s all it took for Shawn Mendes, a 17 year-old singer-songwriter from Canada to become a musical phenomenon. Shawn Mendes used Vine, an app that was used mainly to post funny clips, to post six second covers of songs. Since Mendes was one of the few Viners doing this, his clips were constantly being reVined and shared on Twitter and Facebook. I first discovered Mendes by scrolling through my Vine feed and watching his cover of “Say Something” by A Great Big World. The cover also caught the attention of Andrew Gertler, who reached out to Mendes and became his manager. Gertler worked with Mendes to create songs for his first album in 2014. Shawn Mendes’ first single, “Life of the Party” was released in June of 2014, without any interviews or ads to promote it. The only tool Mendes used was Twitter to tweet the iTunes link. Within the hour of the tweet, the song was at the top of the iTunes chart. Shawn Mendes continued to post covers of songs, requested by fans via Twitter and Vine, for the months following.

Shawn Mendes’ cover of “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift  –

Shawn Mendes’ career hit a high note when pop star Taylor Swift announced her world stadium tour for her 1989 album, with Mendes as her opener. During his time touring with Swift in 2015, he continued to keep his presence on social media strong by interacting with his fans on social media daily, as well as continuing to post covers on Vine as well as Instagram. In January of 2016, Shawn Mendes announced that he was going on his second headlining tour. Instead of just posting directly onto his website, he used a different social media to announce tour dates – Snapchat. He partnered with iHeart Radio and posted videos of himself onto their story announcing dates, followed by tweets from the radio company’s Twitter.

Shawn Mendes’ use of social media has always kept me on my toes. I can’t wait to see how he uses other social media platforms to release new music and information!



Aswad, J. (2014, July 18). How Shawn Mendes Is Turning Vine Fame Into a Music Career | Billboard. Retrieved January 31, 2016, from

Mansfield, B. (2014, November 03). Taylor Swift announces 2015 world tour. Retrieved January 31, 2016, from

Mendes, S. (2014, August 23). New Taylor song rocks ✌✊. Retrieved January 31, 2016, from

Menyes, C. (2016, January 27). Shawn Mendes Tour 2016: ‘Stitches’ Singer Unveils Lengthy North American Trek. Retrieved January 31, 2016, from

Ranscombe, S. (2015, January 16). Shawn Mendes: How a six-second video launched the next Justin Bieber. Retrieved January 31, 2016, from

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Class members of the social media class in the Mayborn School of Journalism

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