Viral content is the holy grail of any online marketing endeavor. As a blogger, viral content will help you gain more exposure to your content, and thereby, more readers. There are two major parts to making content that goes viral: the content itself has to be made so that it has the potention to go viral, and on top of that, you need to to create a viral marketing plan
1- Viral content is non-promotional
People don't like it when they feel like they're being sold to. The average American is exposed to tons of advertising every day, and as a result, they automatically shut themselves off to anything that looks or sounds promotional. If you want your content to go viral, no matter how good it is, do not, at any point say anything like "Follow my blog" or "Like my page." Sure, you can leave a link to your blog or your facebook page strategically placed within your content, and make it available to them in case they might want to click the link. But don't explicitly tell them to do anything like that.
2- Viral content comes in creative formats
Your content can be in the form of writing, pictures, videos, and infographics, which have been very popular lately. Think about what your target audience is, and based on that determine what format it would be best received. Writing would be good when you are providing very valuable informational content that cannot be presented in any other format. Video is good for pretty much anything. Pictures are useful when your content are purely visual, and infographics help you present the information in a graphical representation. Your specific content will determine which format is best.
3-Magnetic headlines and eye-popping thumbnails
Your headline needs to be able to catch your reader's attention. Your headline is what will determine whether potential readers will be interested enough to click on your article and want to read it. A great headline is short, to the point, and aruses interest and excitement in the reader.
Your thumbnail serves the same function as the headline. Whenever the link to your content is listed somewhere in search results or shared on someone's facebook page, your thumbnail appears right next to it. Most web sites just take the first picture you put in your page and use that as a thumbnail. Your thumbnail should be stand out and be noticable, and at the same time represent an aspect of the title.
4-Qualities of viral content
When creating your actual content, keep in mind that you want people to want to share it with their friends after they've read your article. When doing this, it helps to understand what makes people want to share articles with their friends:
- Humor: when something makes us laugh, we share it with friends to make them laugh too
- Shock: when we find something jaw-dropping or awe-inspiring, we share it with others to elicit a similar response.
- Emotion: when something touches us on an emotional level, we share it with friends to make them feel what we are feeling
- Worldviews: when something agrees with our worldview, we share it and use it to validate our views
- Insight: when something makes us stop and think, we want to enlighten others by sharing it with them
5-Easy to share & embed
The title says it all. If you want people to share your article, make it easy to share. Use a widget that allows them to easily share to multiple social media platforms. People are a lot likely to share your content if they find it to be a hassle, so make it as easy for them as possible.
6- Pushed by key influencers
Key influencers are famous people in your niche who have thousands of followers. By getting them to promote your article, your content will be exposed to thousands of potential readers. This greatly magnifies the chances of your content going viral. But it's not as simple as just asking someone out of the blue to retweet your link or share it on their Facebook page. It is important to first build a strong relationship with the person weeks in advance, and it is also important to watch how you approach them when asking them to promote your article or blog post or whatever it may be.
Most people think that making something go viral is all about luck. While it is true that luck may play a small part, if you perfect these six steps when creating and promoting your blog content, you will have a very high chance of going viral.