Creating Viral Content

The internet is filled with content, making it difficult for anyone to stand out. How do you create viral content without a large following? Read on to find out and feel free to leave your questions and comments!

Consider this: Why do we try some things over others?

It’s simple.

Some pieces of content are able to not only get users attention, but provide value. When somebody finds a piece of content to be useful, they’re much more likely to engage with and eventually share it.

The theme here is value. Whether it’s advice on how to overcome a particular problem, or a juicy story that catches your interest, there has to be some form of value for it to work.

Here are some ways to get your content to go viral.

Surprise Your Audience

Jokes typically aren’t as funny when you hear them for a second time. This applies to content too. The same old predicable message won’t get your audience’s attention and certainly will not be memorable.

The most memorable part of a scary movie is when the monster jumps out. People remember what’s unexpected.

It’s important to make sure your content has something to offer your audience and deliver the message in a way that grabs their attention. You get bonus points if your content makes them think a little.

Establish Trust & Credibility

Credibility is important.

If you want someone to trust your message, back up your claims with facts or examples.

We’ve all heard the “9 out of 10 dentists recommend Crest Toothpaste” tagline. To make this claim, Crest likely sampled 10 dentists and reported their findings. Is it possible for 9/10 dentists to recommend the same brand? Yes, but 10 is not a sufficient sample size to accurately speak for ALL dentists. Either way, Crest wasn’t “wrong” and some consumers assumed 90% of dentists endorsed Crest Toothpaste.

The takeaway for this example is to use numbers! Crest’s tagline conveyed A LOT more than it actually meant because it used a credible source (dentists) to sell toothpaste by establishing credibility.

If there are no numbers to present, try to visualize your message. For example, you can convey success by presenting a trophy to visualize achievement. Everyone knows what a trophy represents.

Keep Your Message Simple

Your message has to be simple if you want anyone to acknowledge it, let alone remember it.

If you were to pitch a product with a list of benefits, your prospect would have trouble remembering what makes the product good.

It would be information overload!

Illustrating one prevalent benefit (preferably in a catchy way), will be easier to remember.

Remember Geico’s “15 minutes can save you 15% or more” tagline? It (very simply) states you can save money in 15 minutes.

They don’t talk about the quality of their insurance, or how helpful their customer service reps are.

So remember – less is more!

Leverage Emotions with Storytelling

You can appeal to your audience through their emotions. We see this often in advertising and politics. Start by establishing how you want them to feel, and then determine how you can achieve this.

Bud Light’s “Up for Whatever” campaign focused on the experiences people could form around their products. The object of companionship and “living in the moment” became common, which was effective, considering how common Bud Light was found among American bars and restaurants.

They weren’t selling Bud Light as the best beer, just the beer that can help you have fun and make friends. Notice they focused on one concrete message and that it spoke about something beyond a product.

The point is, you can buy beer, but you can’t buy friendship. Bud Light leveraged ‘happy’ and ‘inclusive’ emotions to sell beer. This was how they chose to stand out – and it worked.

Messaging has to be concrete to stick and it helps when viewers can draw connections. People can associate descriptions with sensations they’ve felt in the past. The warm summer air or the smell of a childhood bakery can trigger memories or feelings that can be transferred to a product or message.

Corona tells a great story with their “Find Your Beach” campaign. Each ad illustrates a warm beach with the sound of waves and seagulls. They tell the story of summer by positioning their product as a taste of summer fun. A warm beach is synonymous with a fun time, so Corona uses this association to sell their product. If you happen to consume this product during the summer, these commercials might remind you of fun, which is a positive emotion that will help strengthen your brand for increased loyalty.

Wrapping Up

If you want your content to go viral, it has to either be surprising, credible, simple, and/or emotional. These are the elements that grab users’ attention, and convey a message in a way that is simple enough to understand and interesting enough to remember. When people understand and remember your message, they will be more likely to engage with it.

Looking to spread your business’ message like wildfire? The experts at Active Web Group have been in business for over 20 years and have serviced businesses of all sizes and industries. With proven expertise in Search Engine OptimizationPay-Per-Click AdvertisingWeb DesignEmail MarketingSocial Media MarketingDigital Brand ManagementContent Development and more, we’re sure to have the tools to help you succeed. Contact us for a free quote. Can’t wait? Give us a call at (800) 978-3417 today!