The term viral refers to the viral phenomena of objects or patterns that are capable of replicating themselves onto other objects, or convert these objects into actual copies of themselves upon exposure. This term was coined relative to the method of propagation shown in physical viruses. The term is now synonymous with the way information, trends, content and news moves and spreads throughout the online population.
This form of content sharing has been increasing as the generation of technology grows older, fueled by the rapid assimilation of social media into their lives; Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, the list goes on, and they all play an integral role in the spread of the aptly named ‘viral’ content.
The beauty of viral media is that often, it is posts that were never intended to gain fame that end up spreading like wildfire, a kind act a stranger did for someone who thanked them with a Facebook post, an Instagram picture with an unintentional comical occurrence in the background. However, there are many who have recognized how to create viral content for the benefit of their business. So what does this mean for people who want to utilize this incredibly powerful tool as a form as marketing? Well, there is two assumptions that can be made; there is a formula to creating a viral post and if done correctly it WILL generate income.
THE FORMULA FOR VIRAL CONTENT.
Many marketers have reported, after working with several clients who gained the sort of ‘virality’ that can transform a business, that there was a definitive formula or pattern that they all shared.
#1 TREND + BEING EARLY.
Firstly, there must be a trend for the content that one intends to go viral, what this means is that there is an increasing number of people who are taking interest in a particular topic; a great example of this is Top 5 & Top 10 videos on YouTube. Channels posting simple videos counting down 5 crazy acts of kindness, or 5 conspiracy theories can gain hundreds of thousands of subscribers in 6-12 months. The content however must be kept relevant to the purpose of the service/business.
It is important to note that with trends, one can’t jump on half way through the voyage and expect to achieve success, one must be the first, or one of the first to catch that ship, before it sails.
#2 DIRECTING TRAFFIC
For every viral video, there are tons which have failed to reach even 100 views, if you’ve jumped on a growing trend and you’re early, that’s great, but if there’s no traffic directed to your video will likely falter just like the rest. It’s highly plausible to suggest that the majority, if not all viral content had some sort of traffic directed at it. Whether it be it was posted on a Facebook profile with a heck of a lot of friends and this initiated the snowballing of it, or a YouTuber with a decent amount of subscribers covered it. From there all it takes is a simple share to make a piece of content hit tipping point.
#3 REMAINING RELEVANT
When talking about utilizing going viral in a business sense, remember to make sure the content is relevant to the service you’re trying to render, or the product that you are trying to sell. A fitness page posting videos of a cat doing a back-flip may get a lot of views, but transforming that into profitable business will be difficult. Try using the above formula, but focusing heavy on the directing of traffic, this could be through utilizing an advertising service, partnering with a service that is aligned with your business but not necessarily in competition i.e. a YouTube channel, and create a high quality, relatable video that is relevant to your business.
Thus, the formula can be presented as:
TREND + BEING EARLY + TRAFFIC (RELEVANCY) = PROFITABLE VIRALITY.
Viral content is a growing trend in itself, and what’s so exciting about it is the fact that anyone can use this formula, from an old established business to a brand new startup.