By Cara Friedman One question I hear over and over again in the social media industry is, "how do I make a viral video?" As defined by a reliable source (Wikipedia), "a viral video is one that becomes popular through the process of Internet sharing, typically through video sharing websites, social media, and email. Well that sounds easy! I have done some serious research on this topic and have found a fool proof formula to making a "viral video." Behold the mysteries of the Internet!
1. Get an animal. Preferably a cat but you could definitely use a dog or bunny. In fact, if you can find an exotic animal like a monkey, giraffe, or hedgehog, it would be even more likely that your video will go viral.
2. Make sure your animal has a talent. Does your cat play the guitar? Does he dance the Macarena? The more talented the better. If your pet is circus-worthy you are on the right track.
3. No talents? Well is your pet funny? Sometimes being humorous can work even better than being a freakily talented pet.
4. Use (or borrow) a young child in your video. Kids say the darndest things and people just can't get enough of them! Exploit your children! Warning: They may get angry about this when they are old enough to understand.
5. No kids? No pets? Be famous. When your famous any video you post goes viral. All you need to do is smile and wave. Maybe even lip sync.
6. Try to be famous. Okay okay... you're right. Suggesting that you should "be famous" is just ridiculous. You can however try to be famous! You don't even need talent!
7. Autotune yourself. After watching the previous video you may be thinking, "isn't this the same thing?" Believe it or not, you can autotune yourself doing anything! You don't even need a music video.
8. Last but not least... Stop trying to make a viral video. Yes folks, we have reached the moral of the story. There IS no equation for creating a viral video.
Videos that "go viral" are more often than not accidental! Creating a video with the intent of it going viral is bound to fail. Rather than having a goal of "going viral" you should have a goal of "being valuable." Create content that is valuable, entertaining, and informative. Share things you love and think other people will benefit from. That's what will make your content go viral. That's what people want to share. Whether or not that content contains a child or talented animal is just coincidence.
Have no fear because this is not an impossible task. Brands have achieved viral status before without trying so hard. Here's one of my favorites:
Why do you share viral videos? Share your thoughts below and apply your learnings to your future content!