How to go viral : Top 10 tips and tricks

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Today, trying to get your brand or content noticed among all the publications and competitors is a real challenge. Fortunately, there are many ways to go viral that will help your business or brand attract the attention of a wider audience.
How to go viral: Top 10 tips and tricks to go viral on social media

Today, trying to get your brand or content noticed amongst all the publications and competitors is a real challenge. Fortunately, there are many ways to go viral that will help your business or brand to attracting attention a wider audience.

However, going viral is not as easy as it sounds. It takes a lot of time, effort and a well thought-out strategy to ensure that the campaign you decide to publish runs smoothly. And even then, there is no guarantee that your strategy will go viral and that you will achieve your goals. That's why we've compiled this guide on how to go viral and tips to help you succeed with your campaign and reach as many people as possible ! So, are you ready to increase your visibility?

1. Plan your digital strategy before you publish

Planning your strategy before you publish is theone of the first steps to get your campaign noticed. By defining the best strategic plan for your campaign, you will be able to achieve optimal results. This includes : 

  • determine the type of messages you should publish
  • how often you should publish them

Secondly, it is important that you find a catchy name for your campaign ! This will be the title of your social media campaign and this name will help people understand what it is about and give them an idea of what they can expect from the content it contains. 

Paid advertising can help you gain visibility, see below to see what is important to consider before embarking on a paid campaign.

Remember that you will be even stronger if you manage to go viral organically. Think about the fact that paying can in this case support your campaign but keep in mind that it should not be the only vector of visibility. This means that you may be able to avoid activating a paid campaign, but even so, your visibility remains important.

In the strategy to be implemented to go viral, many elements must be taken into account. For this article, I have decided to highlight two very important ones!

Know your audience

Before you start publishing, it is important to think about who you are targeting and how to contact them. This means define your target which must meet an objective that you have determined (see point below).

This target may also vary depending on the social networks you use. You don't reach the same target if you post on Facebook, LinkedIn or TikTok for example.

In order to go viral, it is mandatory to take this point into account. Your message must speak to your target audience and they must feel that they are being addressed specifically.

It all depends on the timing

Timing is also a very important element in going viral with your campaign. Choosing the right timing is a crucial choice and quite broad: there is thetime where you publish your campaign which can have an impact but also the seasonality.

Some content will work better in winter than in summer, for example, and a piece of content shared at 5pm may have a better organic impact at launch than a campaign published at 12pm.

To know what to do in terms of timing, you need to know your market and analyse the statistics that your different channels can give you.

2. Decide on your goal

Another important step in planning your strategy is to set a post-campaign objective or goal. Before you can go viral, you must first decide what your goal is. There are different types of objectives such as wanting to grab people's attention, build brand awareness and increase engagement or even generate leads.

  • If your aim is to increase thecommitmentIf you want to make your website more relevant to your users, then you need to focus on content that is interesting and engaging to users.
  • If your goal is to generate leadsYou need to find out what your target audience looks like. Are they mainly men or women? Do they have a specific demographic profile? What age range do they fall into?

These are all important questions that will help you create a strategy that will work best for your campaign! Your objectives also allow you to determine the CTAs (Call To Action) to place in your campaigns. Where do you want to take the people who see your campaign and what actions do you want them to take?

Finally, having clear objectives also helps to measuring success (or not) of your campaign and to measure your profitability.

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3. Stay consistent in your digital strategy

It is important to follow a consistent content strategy and to publish new articles regularly. The more often you publish your content, the more likely you are to attract a wider audience. If you promise too much and don't do enough, your campaign will go the way of all the other failed campaigns. So, before you publish, ask yourself, "Will this post be different from the others?" If the answer is no, don't publish.

Think about your brand image, respect it so that your target can visually understand quickly that it is you. The more your brand image is strong, the more people will recognise you at a glance and each of your publications will resonate with the people you reach!

Consistency is a crucial aspect of going viral from a digital point of view.

4. Be creative

If you are not creative, don't expect to go viral. This is a very competitive industry and it is easier to stand out if you think outside the box. If your posts are linked to all the other posts on social media, you are less likely to be noticed. Try to make your content is different from other by being creative, new and unexpected! In addition to the various points mentioned below, you should also take into account two other important factors: "stay authentic" and create content that is "authentic".instant gratification".

Go viral on social networks thanks to the creativity of your message in line with your digital strategy
Go viral with your message's creativity

How to curate viral content?

Knowing what to share and how to share it is never an easy task. So the easiest way is to see what is already working on the web. Then it's up to you to bring your creativity to bear so that you don't do exactly the same thing as your competition and stand out.

There are many platforms that allow you to keep a watch to see what works well and help you go viral. Here are some of the platforms, some of which have free access so you can try it out already and see if it works for you: Scoop.it FeedlyBuzzsumo

Google has also developed a simple tool that allows you to receive alerts on certain topics that interest you. It is obviously not as sophisticated as the tools mentioned above but it is a good start: Google Alert.

Offer something unique

Building on what already works is good but bring your own personal touch and differentiate yourself from the competition is much better.

Put forward your point of view or approach to raise awareness or reach your target in a different way, be consistent with your company or brand and the message you want to deliver. Adapting a buzz from another sector to your market is a great way to be unique and ride a trend that is already working elsewhere.

Form an emotional bond

Incorporating emotion into your campaign increases engagement and adherence to your campaign. Studies clearly show that emotions promote action. To make a decision, human beings use their reason, but also their emotions. 
This is why it is important to take the emotional factor into account when creating campaigns. There are two main types of emotions divided into positive and in emotion negative.

It is now up to you to choose the type of emotion you want to use to go viral.

Pay attention to the length of the video

If you make video content, get to the point. Social network users are often in a hurry and don't have much time. 

So think about making videos in short format in which you convey important information in the first few seconds. The idea here is to engage your target audience and make them feel concerned from the start. Asking specific questions at the beginning of your video, for example, is a good way to hook your target audience.

5. Create a contest to go viral

A competition is a great way to go viral. If you do the promotion of a productOffer some of your items as a reward. 

You can easily create contests on Facebook, Instagram or any other social network by posting it on your company profile. The great thing about contests is that they are easy for brands to manage and execute, so they often don't need expert help. In addition, competitions take less time than other digital marketing methods and require less effort with minimal risk of failure. 

For example: A travel brand could run a contest where they choose a winner who gets free airfare all over the world next summer! The contest consists of giving something in exchange for an action from a user you have defined. It's up to you to offer something interesting that makes as many people as possible want to take the time to follow your terms of participation.

Before entering a competition, you should estimate the potential return and the return on investment it can generate for you.

6. Use influencer marketing to boost your campaign.

Influencer marketing is a strategy that can help you achieve your goals and build brand awareness. Influencers are people who have a large following on social networks and can help spread awareness of your brand and content. By working with influencers, you are able to generate buzz for your campaign. It is also a much more cost-effective way to get your campaign noticed.

Don't start influencer marketing without analysing the influencers you want to work with. Think first about the community who follows the influencer so that it corresponds to your potential customers. Without this, you risk making a killing or at least you will have difficulty making your campaign profitable.

An influencer, generally depending on the size of their community and their commitment, will ask you for a budget that can quickly turn out to be high. So it's up to you to invest in the right person!

7. Don't forget paid advertising

Finally, consider using paid advertising tools such as Facebook, Instagram or YouTube ads if you have a corporate budget set aside for such services.

Paid advertising is an excellent way toincrease reach of your content. But it is not for everyone. With paid advertising, cost and return on investment are factors to consider. If you're not sure if paid advertising is right for you, contact one of our digital strategy experts which will guide you through the best decision to take.

Organic content can go viral without even having invested a budget in paid advertising on social networks, but it is obvious that sponsoring or setting up a well thought-out advertising campaign can only help you achieve your goals.

8. Stay organised and communicate frequently!

For your campaign to be successful, you need to stay organized and be constant.
Consistency is often forgotten on social networks and yet it is one of the main elements that will help you go viral.

It is quite possible to go viral on social networks with just one post, but let's be honest, it is still very rare! And even if it does, don't stop at your first buzz, keep riding that positive wave.

Virality is built. Take your favourite artist for example, he didn't get known for his first song or his first sketch. They worked at it over time to get there.

9. Create a strong call to action

Going viral also requires a strong call to action. The call to action must be strong, clear and concise. It should speak directly to the audience andspur to action accordingly.

For example, if you are selling a product, your call to action could be "Buy now". 

As well as getting people to act, it is important that your call to action does not offend or frustrate your audience. If you put too much emphasis on the message you want people to remember, they may find it difficult or unappealing. So make sure that the message is not too direct and that the tone of your campaign is positive and inspiring.

Many campaigns have opted for a lighter speech that does not overemphasise the objective the company wants to achieve. This makes the campaign less aggressive and therefore commercial and thus increases engagement.

10. Always be ready to pivot and improve

You should always be prepared to pivot and improve your strategy if your campaign is not going as planned. This includes adding other elements to your campaign, such as advertisements or interesting facts about your company or product.

It is also important to keep a small budget aside so that you can reallocate it to another campaign that was not originally planned. Another important tip is that you should always think outside the box. The world is full of creativity and bright ideas, so don't be afraid to ask other people for help. If you are unable to come up with an idea on your own, look for inspiration on social networks or Google common mistakes made by companies that have gone viral before.

Keep in mind for this part that there is no point in sticking with a campaign that is not working. You are busy spending your time (and possibly money) on a strategy that may not achieve your goals. It is therefore important to questioning by analysing the potential reasons for this situation and to adapt what you think you need to adapt to achieve this.

Do not take this as a failure but rather as a lesson that allows you toadvance and understand what works and what doesn't. And if you've reached this point, remember to take up each of the points mentioned above.

Conclusion

Going viral requires a lot of work and discipline: you don't just go viral! If you take all the above points into account, you have all the cards in your hand to achieve this. 

  1. The key is to be well prepared by defining clear and precise objectives for a specific target that you must reach by choosing the most appropriate communication channel (e.g. the various social networks have a very specific audience).
  2. Create content that is consistent with your brand image and target audience, but with a touch of originality that will make you stand out from your competitors' content
  3. Continuously analyse your results to continually improve your campaigns and get the most out of your campaigns and go viral as quickly as possible
Pierre van Steenberghe

Pierre van Steenberghe

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