Web Marketing Lesson 6: Secret Sauce (Part 1 of 2)
Create high quality content for powerful SEO, Email Newsletter updates and Social Media mentions about your site.
WARNING: 99.99% of you WILL FAIL to get your content to go viral. So if you’re looking for a 1 minute fix, a trick or a magic bullet to make your crappy content loved by everyone who sees it, then please, skip this page and get on with your life. Only the Top 1% of the Top 1% of you that bother to read and apply this information will have a shot at that ephemeral sort of Internet publishing success known as “gone viral”.
This article is an easy to use, step-by-step guide to give any article, post or Page on your WordPress website the juice it needs to go viral in the easiest, best and fastest way possible.
Got your WordPress website powered up and ready to grow, but just don’t know what to do to make your work earn massive reach?
No worries. This article shows you specifically the ingredients necessary to make your content be popular.
Those ingredients include four major components, and they are usually best done in this order:
3. Social Media
Aside from being the most efficient method for adding the secret sauce to your content, you can repeat this process for just about any page on any type of site. It just happens to be very easy to do on your WordPress site.
Okay, so let’s quickly review what you should have already done.
Step 1: Register your domain.
Step 2: Setup Your Web Hosting Account
Step 3: Install WordPress
Step 4: Setup plugins to secure your WordPress site and give it the extra powers you need.
In case you skipped straight to this page, and still don’t have a domain or website host, here are some quick shortcuts for you to catch up.
OK, so we’re all together now. Super.
Now before you can actually optimize, distribute and get social media to popularize your great article, post, page, or other object, like a video, an infographic or an ebook, you first have to create that great piece of content that will appeal to masses of people.
And here’s how you do that.
Section 0: Content
6 Common Traits To Make Your Videos And Other Content Go Viral
As you undoubtedly know, viral content is the most sought after type of content. Of course, if you’re new to publishing, or if you’re stuck in old rules and regulations about how to create content, getting your videos to go viral is more of a Herculean feat than it is a walk in the park. Extremely sharable content is so powerful that it may boost your business, big time. This surge in growth can lead new people to your site, even multiple times, and increase your conversion rate (that’s the percentage of visitors to your website, who take the action you want them to take). Creating a viral video or other type of content is far from easy, unless you know these six simple secrets.
Most people, and especially “experts” and “gurus” will tell you that getting any content to go viral is akin to winning the Internet’s equivalent of the lottery. You’ve no doubt heard about how hard it is to earn viral status for any piece of content, and usually it’s even harder to repeat, let alone to do better and better with each successive attempt. For every viral video success, there are thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of total epic fails. Even sites like BuzzFeed and Upworthy, two massive leaders of viral content creation, only have about 0.3 percent of of their posts going viral.
Fortunately for you, I have spent decades researching, experimenting and working through trial and error in the content and marketing business, taking copious notes and distilling them into teachable moments, so that you don’t have to. You can simply read the following and try it out for yourself. You’re welcome.
The good news, despite what others will tell you, is that there are a great deal of things you can do to greatly increase your chances of success at making your content go viral.
So if you want (or need) to help your business claim its stake on the rewards of viral content, follow these six tactics:
Keep It Simple, Stupid (KISS)
Remember, the content you create is for the Twitter generation. And that means, you have to be able to crystalize your social media message in 140 characters or less. Brainwidth given to any topic is shrinking. And despite the ever-increasing population on Earth, the available slice of earned brainshare in the total minds’ pie is getting narrower for any publisher. This is happening as a result of a shift in the ratio of publishers from few publishers for the population, to many more publishers and channels for consumption than ever before. Human attention span keeps getting shorter. That means you need to tighten up your content be it in written, graphic, audio or video form. Edit your words. Less is more. Unlike this article, which is lengthy and abundantly verbose for a reason (which will be revealed soon), your viral content should live by the old saying that “Brevity is wit”.
A survey published in The New York Times found more than 19% of people had left a video after only 10 seconds. By 60 seconds in, the video had a whopping 44% attrition rate of viewers. And that means, if you’ve even read this sentence after having read the article from the start (at an average adult reading speed), then you’re already in the top 1% of consumers; a sole survivor in the war for mental attention, fought by publishers eager to win your time. So congratulate yourself. You’re now fully in the labyrinth while all others have already admitted defeat and departed the field.
You see, by keeping the article lengthy, I have used mere words to separate the wheat from the chaff; the genuinely interested people who want to succeed at publishing viral content, from the general “gimme” people who just want to copy & paste their way through the production of content. That leaves you in pole position to take the flag, as soon as you get through the rest of this article, and apply its secrets to your own content.
And now that you know that about half of your audience is gone by the end of the first minute, and about 99% is gone by the end of minute two, be sure to put your most astonishing, interesting, mind-blowing, captivating, funny, or shocking information first and foremost in your content.
Creating viral content generally means do not save the best for last. Throw your first punch fast and hard, and get as many more hits in before that first minute is up.
Of course this does not mean you have to constrain your item to a bite-sized chunk. Viral content can in fact range anywhere in size from a single asset, like a .JPG file, all the way up to rich, multi-page experiences. But just like the Universe we live in, it has to start with a big bang.
After all, if you can’t sum up what you’re doing in a short phrase or two, how are you ever going to get it to go viral on twitter, facebook, linkedin, pinterest, imgur, reddit, etc?
In Contagious: Why Things Catch On, the book’s author, Jonah Berger, wrote that he learned that the most highly sharable or viral content tends to stir strong emotional response in the viewer, reader, listener or other sort of consumer. And of those emotions, the most sharable content has a tendency to be that which has an upbeat tone or a positive note. With the application of the empirical research method, Mr. Berger and University of Pennsylvania Professor Katherine Milkman discovered that happy emotions tend to perform better than sad emotions in terms of actual sharing results.
To be shareworthy, content must hit chords of emotion in viewers. These same people (or deep learning Artificial Intelligence machines) are more probable to share content of a positive nature, so if you want your videos to go viral, it’s important to strive for an upbeat or uplifting spin.
To make your content go viral, it can help to be updated on current events. Although much viral content seems “timeless” in terms of topic, a good deal of it is influenced by the goings-on of the real world. Making reference to an existing popular topic or theme, like an Internet meme, you improve the likelihood that your content will be seen and shared by the people who have already shown an interest in the topic.
You can use any current event in the world, including politics, pop culture, arts, science, culture, travel, or any subject dominating the news. For instance, see how many parodies of popular entertainment like Harry Potter and Game of Thrones exist on video channels, content curation sites and image sharing sites. If you speak the lingua franca of your target audience and you express interest in their topics of interest, they are more want to share your content.
A critical component of going viral is engagement. Engaging with a High Value Audience (HVA) leads to better rates of interest, involvement and loyalty. Do not underestimate your audience’s voice and opinion. This understanding is utilized by major brands including Coca-Cola, Old Spice and Amazon in everything from advertising campaigns to comments and other feedback channels on their websites and social media pages.
In addition to having a natural and organic fan base on social media channels, the British magician Dynamo engages larger audiences by doing appearances on BBC and with celebrity hosts like members of the boy band One Direction (when they were quite popular in 2012 – 2014). At one event, he answered fan questions who were using social media to send questions to a television show, the videos of which are up on YouTube. By involving himself with people who might normally be outside of his sphere of influence, he engaged more new minds to videos and TV shows that feature his talents as an illusionist, magician, and mind-reader. By answering questions from those viewers, he gave his brand of content a major boost and made his videos much more sharable.
To Be Continued …
As usual, if you like this article and care to help us in our efforts to put Google’s quality content claims to the test, then I ask you to please share this page with your peers and colleagues on your social networks or any place where web publishers may find it beneficial.
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