“Going viral.” It's every marketer's dreams.
We've seen small companies thrown into the spotlight because of one viral video. Remember the Squatty Potty?
And even large companies hopped on the viral video train. Remember Jeff Goldblum as fake “famous person” Terry Quattro in GE's infomercial parody?
Both of those videos used humor to get shares, and it worked.
So how do you make that happen for your business?
I'll let you in on a little secret: it's mostly luck. The good news is, there are ways to try and improve your odds of “getting lucky.” That's where the skill comes in.
Thanks to Neil Patel and the Content Marketing Institute for publishing these insights.
Here are four keys to creating videos that get shared:
Creating your video
Even though it feels random sometimes, there is a pattern for which videos take off and which ones sit in obscurity.
Before you make content, you need to have a plan.
Make something people want to share
It may sound simple – and it is – but that's because people aren't going to share something they don't like.
Whether it’s a cute cat video that can make someone’s day a little better or a video with a strong message for a cause, you have to create something that people will want to share with their friends.
Ultimately, you want to make a video that will make people feel cool to share with their friends. You could appeal to their conscience, their interests, or their heartstrings. Videos that alienate or embarrass aren’t going to get you the shares you want.
Make people feel something
Create something that will give viewers an emotional reaction – laughter, joy, sadness, anger, or a call to act. Most viral images evoke happiness, surprise, admiration, or satisfaction.
Be careful with content that evokes anger. It’s OK to get people angry about an injustice in the world, but if you don’t offer a next step to address that emotion, the viewer doesn’t really go anywhere or accomplish anything.
The emotion that seems to get the most traction is inspiration. Just look at Upworthy’s success from sharing videos that give viewers that warm, bubbly feeling. Inspirational and feel-good videos usually get the most buzz.
Don’t drag on and on
A lot of content competes with your video and people tend to have a short attention span when scrolling through social media. Get to your point quickly, otherwise you’re going to lose people. (At the five-minute mark, over 90% of viewers have bailed.)
If you get people invested in the video within five to seven seconds (or even better, with just an interesting title), then you’re golden.
Don’t make it feel like an infomercial
We all see too many ads throughout the day. People want to get something out of the content they watch, and not feel like they’re being brainwashed about what brands they should like.
It’s possible to make videos that promote your brand without being preachy. Make sure your brand values are well represented in the content, and give people information they care about. If you’re a company that sells apples, for example, make some of those how-to recipe videos that everyone loves right now.
You can read more about strategies to distribute and getting people to watch your videos over at the Content Marketing Institute.