So last week I got a chance to watch a viral video on youtube called “Telekinetic Coffee Shop Surprise” as I’m sure a lot of you have too. Then in class, Wags showed us the video again and that got me thinking of how does a video go viral? What are the ingredients of successful viral videos?
Here’s a Dove real beauty video campaign, one of the most successful viral video of 2012.
What made this video successful?
- it touches emotions On multiple levels
- it clarifies how women view their bodies
- sends powerful and positive message
These elements compel people to share the video because there’s nothing negative or mundane about it to NOT share. A message this powerful and positive should be shared, hence its successful views. Although the video received tremendous success, the brand Dove, did not receive mutual level of success as the video.
Here’s a look at another viral video that results in a slightly different reaction from viewers
It’s an advertisement for a TV channel in Belgium whereby they placed a red button in the centre of a quiet townsquare and let innocent pedestrian push it. Then a series of dramatic events would occur right there and then. Watch it, if you haven’t already, it’s very funny.
This video went viral because it is funny, and has been highly produced.
Like Wags mentioned in class regarding the telekinetic coffee shop video, good viral videos require high quality production level (large amount of cash spent on) or else it would not seem realistic and would not appeal to anybody. Another example of well-funded viral video ad campaign is Pepsi Max “Test Drive” prank by Jeff Gordon
Which brings me to the question, what are the ingredients of viral videos?
1) Humor – everybody wants a good laugh once in a while
2) Something we can all relate to
3) Emotions – doesn’t this video want to make you cry? Emotional videos with positive messages are worth sharing.
4) The element of surprise! – it works! People love unexpected things like this brand of women’s lingerie video. - watch til the end and you may be in for a surprise!
Successful viral videos possess at least one of those ingredients, but they also need key messengers in order to launch the video into viral success as well. Viral marketing relies heavily on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Google+, etc. Without large pools of audiences in the virtual world, the video would drown in thousands of videos uploaded on Youtube daily. With the proper ingredients, viral videos are bound to be one of the quickest and effective marketing method.
Not all viral video campaigns are successful, this video shows a teacher in a classroom in Thailand who got extremely upset with a student playing with his Blackberry during the lecture she smashed the cellphone to the floor. This video immediately went viral in Thailand and made it to the national news and stirred up a lot of controversial arguments both online and offline communities. It was later revealed that the video was made by Burger King Thailand to promote Angry Whopper Burger. People did not resonate the video with the product, and the sales of the burger was not impressive. The video itself was popular, but it does not relate to the product they’re trying to sell, which in this case, is a burger, so the campaign flopped.
Share your favourite viral videos in the comments section!