It is understandable that everybody wants to create a video that goes viral. What better way to gain exposure for your company than a video the whole world is sharing and watching, that once created, requires no further work from you? The answer is there is no better way, but the sad reality of creating a successful viral video to order is incredibly difficult. If you are a large company that has a huge budget and access to successful writers, producers, directors, cameramen and famous talent then your chances are made 100 times better. However, for most of us, this is not the case and we need to make the best of small budgets and access to small local production companies and/or friends and family.
Don’t be too disheartened. There are some potentially powerful things you can do that will give you the best chance to be successful with your viral video. As a Toronto videographer let me give you my top eight tips for creating a successful viral corporate video production. I have created these top eight tips based on my years of creating video, analysing the social media space, and tracking the success of different viral videos.
- Create a video that’s relevant, but most of all is funny, clever or offers something different. It can be the most interesting video in the world, but unless it catches someones attention through humour, or makes them say ‘wow’, it is not memorable and therefore not likely to be shared. Think about every video you have shared with friends, family or colleagues. You more than likely shared it because you knew that person would also find it funny or make them say ‘wow’ and thus you will talk about it the next time you see that person.
- You need to put in the legwork. It’s no use just posting your video to YouTube and expecting it to just gather 10’s of thousands of views within a few days. Nope, you gotta earn those shares which make a video go viral. As well as YouTube you should be posting it on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn etc, using both your business account and personal account. Ask those on both the professional network and personal network to share it. For those on your business network, perhaps offer an incentive, like a discount, or a prize giveaway.
- Submit it to article submission websites, social news websites and to influential bloggers. It can pay off forwarding it to journalists and any famous presenters and/or celebrities that you might follow on Twitter. If just one of those people re-post it this can be the catalyst for your video.
- Social news sites such as Reddit, Hacker News etc are great to use. If bloggers from prominent blogging sites such as Mashable, Jezebel and Huffington Post see it and write about it, this is another huge feather in your cap.
- Make sure you release, or launch, your video at the best time. Personally, I believe releasing a video on a Monday on Tuesday is best as it gives the whole week to gain momentum. Not as many videos are watched at the weekend. Make sure you avoid releasing near any holidays, or if there has been a recent big news story. If you decide to release on a Monday don’t do it in the morning as people are catching up on emails etc. If releasing on a Tuesday I would advise releasing it in the morning.
- LINK! Link and like your videos like your life depended on it. Link to anything relevant that might gain you views. If you are promoting your dog walking service and you walk the dogs in a certain park, you use certain dog poo bags and you drive them around in a certain type of vehicle link to all these things online. Also, reach out to these companies and see if they will link from their website to your video.
- If you have created a fun video about the café you own, that particularly caters for young mothers in a certain city or town, then seek out forums these young mothers may be active in. So for example, if you have said café in a Toronto suburb, such as Mississauga (well Mississauga is more of its own city but you know what I mean), then you want to find local Mississauga forums, or young mothers forums, on LinkedIn, Facebook etc and post your video in there.
- The title of your video is vitally important. Do you remember how they used to create titles of Friends episodes? They went along the lines of ‘The One Where Rachel Gets Pregnant’. Your video should be titled kind of like this. We have an expression in the UK, ‘Does what it says on the tin’. This means, just title your video exactly what happens in it, what it does etc. So if your video features a baby dancing with one of your company’s designer diapers on you should title it ‘Dancing baby in diaper’. Also, try to keep in mind what people might be searching for. On YouTube people tend to not search for viral videos so the ‘Does what it says on the tin’ mantra works well. If the type of video they are searching for is ‘How To’ videos. So if your video specifically lends itself to this, you want to target these searches. For example, if your video is about promoting a new energy efficient light bulb you have developed, you might want to create a video with a funny take, such as, ‘How To Change a Lightbulb’.
There are no hard and fast rules for creating successful viral videos, but if you follow these eight rules you will give yourself the best possible chance. At VCM we can help you create this video to be the best it can be and then advise you as to how you can get the most eyes on it. Call, or email, us today to book a free, no-obligation Discovery Meeting where we will help you figure out your video plan.