What is viral content? How do you create it? How does a regular Joe like me create something that generates 10 million likes and shares? Until this week’s readings the thought of creating viral content seemed very overwhelming and scary but as the saying goes “the truth will set you free.”
In reality creating viral content is like creating good content, just at a higher level. There are methods to the madness that provide some insight for us: be consistent, be relevant, and play on emotions. These are essential elements to making highly shareable content so obviously it translates into viral content. Ok great, so now that we know the science behind “viral” content how to we get millions of likes and shares in a matter of days?
I love that Dori Clark sheds light on what viral content really is. It’s not the angry cat, the infamous “Hide Yo Kids, Hide Yo Wife” Antoine Dodson video, or anything along those lines…it’s getting 10-20% of your audience to tell one additional friend about you. That really is amazing when you think of it. This whole time I’ve been sitting here thinking about how crazy it would be to have viral content when in all actuality I probably have had some “viral” blog posts in this class this semester.
If viral is just “word of mouth” on steroids then we’ve all probably experienced it. I’ve posted pictures on Facebook that have gotten over 50 likes, based on Clark’s notion I would say that is viral content. It’s a lot more people than usual that liked my posts. I’ve had friends at work read my blog and then ask me about it the next day at lunch…is this viral content? I would say yes.
When the goal is just to have a high level of visibility with the content you post then you are creating viral content. I think this is really the goal of everyone on every social network. We want likes, shares, and retweets. It’s not so daunting when I put it in perspective. I want people to like what I post. This whole semester I’ve been keeping tabs on what my audience likes. I’ve been publishing posts that create the most engagement, allow me to have a higher SEO, give them something to think about, and keep them coming back for more. I have created “viral” content.
What do you consider to be viral content? Do you think have in some aspect you have created viral content this semester?