Virality and You: How to Make your Content go Viral

It’s amazing how accurately some words truly embody a concept its meant to describe. Take for example viral content. Whether it is a video, an article, or even an image, viral content is web based content that catches on and spreads, much like a virus. Let’s explore some of the more specific aspects of this concept, understanding the nature of virality is the key to mastering it for your own uses.

While diseases and pathogens are physically transmitted, viral content is emotionally contagious. The reason we are so compelled to share content has to do with the emotions we feel when we initially encounter it. According to BuzzSumo, the four emotions that earn the most shares are awe (human interest stories that inspire some sort of activism) , laughter, amusement, and joy. This explains the natural popularity of Gangnam Style and pictures of small animals to say a political activist opportunity.

The virality of content can be more potent under specific conditions. Readers are naturally drawn to easily digestible content. Rather than large blocks of text, here are more popular forms content can take to drive more shares:

  • Infographics and Pictures
  • Top (Insert Number Here) Lists
  • Videos

Content in these formats are user-friendly and therefore more accessible. Even doing so little as breaking the content up with a few images is good practice to attract an audience. A provocative headline that “pops” is just as important as your content. Remember the age-old adage “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover?” That rule does not exists with an online audience. The reason sensationalist news is so popular is their mastery of click bait content.

Like diseases, viral content even has an incubation period where it is most likely to catch on. Interaction with content drops off on an average of 96% three days after it is initially shared.  This is common for all content, so don’t be discouraged if your content doesn’t go viral on the initial unveiling! Many content marketers will reintroduce their content to social media multiple times, often to see a significant increase in page hits and shares the second time around!

If you're interested in learning more about viral content, take a look at the infographic below, it's full of specific information on how to increase your content's virality!

Viral Content, Virality

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