We are all aware that the power of online media is exerting a massive influence throughout our daily lives. From knowing what are the most popular Christmas toys to witnessing how social portals might even impact political outcomes, channels like YouTube are here to stay. However, what defines a “viral” video? How can you transform a channel with few hits to one which receives thousands of visitors (or more) every month? If you are frustrated at your current base of followers, the information contained within this article will certainly come in handy. Let’s begin by taking a look at the “viral” concept in greater detail before providing you with a handful of professional tips.
Viral 101: Not Just About the Numbers
Many would-be online influencers believe that a viral video or news feed is defined by nothing more than the number of likes that it receives. While such feedback is certainly important, these figures are less critical when compared to how often the video itself is shared. Sharing indicates that the media contains valuable, relevant or otherwise entertaining. There is actually a very real organic reason why shared videos are on the cusp of becoming viral.
Sharing represents more of an organic nature than simple “likes”. It literally takes an individual less than a second to like content. After all, you most likely perform such actions on a daily basis when browsing through news feeds and social media sites. Sharing a video requires a more proactive stance by the viewer. This signifies that the content resonates with his or her interests. If they pass it across to other like-minded individuals, the media will begin to gain clout.
Clout is another way of saying that media content will appear higher within a search engine results page. In fact, it will also gain more visibility within YouTube itself. This is the reason why certain videos and channels always seem to pop up at the top of the list when you type in a specific query. The good news is that this tends to be a self-propagating system. In other words, videos that are shared more often will receive a greater amount of interest. In turn, they will be shared once again.
You might still be surprised to learn that even some of the top YouTube celebrities are not exactly aware of how to best leverage their exposure. It is much better to adopt the correct practices in the very beginning as opposed to being forced to modify them along the way. How can this be done and are there any hidden secrets to bring to light?
Viral Video Creation: Thinking Outside of the Box
Let us imagine that you are creating a YouTube channel from scratch and you already have a number of videos which will soon be uploaded to your feed. The first thing to keep in mind is that YouTube is really only the beginning. Viral content is that which can be found across numerous other portals such a Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and similar channels. This is why hyperlinks should always be included immediately below the video and even before the body of the description. Users will be drawn to these links and as a result, they are more likely to take further action.
Another hint which should be embraced more by current YouTube celebrities involves the call to action. You have likely noticed that a typical CTA is placed in the beginning of the video; even before the content itself is introduced. This presents a real problem for a number of reasons:
- Viewers will immediately feel as if they are being sold a product.
- This method can be viewed as slightly pushy.
- It detracts from the content being presented.
- Users are more likely to skip ahead to the “meat” of the video as opposed to choosing to follow or subscribe.
It is much better to place any call to action within the final two-thirds of the video; preferably immediately before the summary or the conclusion.
Finally, always be sure to engage with your audience. Visitors are much more likely to share your content if they feel that you appreciate what they think and feel. This does not necessarily have to occur every time a comment is posted, but rather if the entry brings up an important point or starts a conversation between other users. Even a few short sentences can go a long way towards online media promotion.
Going viral is not as much of a challenge as you might believe. Remember that the material should be unique, entertaining and address the interests of the user base in question. Please keep the suggestions mentioned above in mind, as they will undoubtedly come in handy if you hope to build a loyal following over time.