In todays fast moving social media, the nirvana of all words is........VIRAL! Now that used to be a word that had you running for the doctors and begging for some anti-biotics, now it's the golden chalice, the pot at the end of the rainbow for brands. Getting your brand spread around the globe in seconds and everyone talking about it.
There is no real rhyme or reason for why something goes viral and that's why it's always going to be a rare and momentarily glimpsed event by brands, something that can't be guaranteed even if you spend loads of money on it....and this can only be a good thing.
But there is one key element that gives it a big boost and that's, HUMOUR, like chasing your dog through a park when we see something that makes us chuckle we tell people about it....wait there's two elements.......SHOCK, like staring at a simple game and a zombie suddenly screams out of the screen. Being rocked on our heals, by something wholey unexpected sets the 'Share' button alight like wild fire.....no hold on there are three elements....TRUTH, like seeing what a woman really goes through in a photoshoot.....show people the truth of something and you can guarantee they'll sing it from the roof tops…oh, just thought of a fourth…..REALITY, like this sky diving video that goes very wrong ...capturing that one unique moment will always draw in the crowds.
Are you starting to get the vibe that there really isn’t one element?! It's some crazy weird digital phenomenon.
The great thing about it is that it means large brands can’t just throw money at something and it’ll go viral, it means if it’s creative and has at least one of the above elements in it you might just catch that horrible cold.
Brands already understand this dilemma and have taken a different tack where they don’t even mention themselves, like one of my favourite examples of the old lady and the air bag, which actually was an advert for Ikea which at the end of the video the link took users to a Ikea site which challenged you to imagine odd combinations which, together, form useful home goods. Now the site and the idea of it might not have been great but the video that got you there was sheer genius and generated millions of viewings and millions upon millions of comments.
They can also if done really well turn into a mini series like the below videos which are a parody of David Blaine’s series Street Magic. They will make you giggle for ages and they so cleverly take the key aspects of the show and take them to the next exaggeration step….a step which most people when watching the original programme are already probably thinking about.
These are NOT SAFE FOR WORK, due to the use of bad language, so forward this page home and watch it tonight you won’t regret it.