9 Tips on How to Make a Viral Video

Considering that 68% of consumers spend a quarter or more of their time on social media watching videos, it is no surprise that content regularly goes viral on all platforms.

Historically, viral videos were just a stroke of luck where any element would appeal to the masses, making the video a huge hit and giving content creators their moment in the spotlight.

But with newer platforms like TikTok and features like YouTube Shorts, it can be said that creating viral content is possible with some strategizing.


What is a viral video?

A viral video is a form of video content that instantly captures the attention of many people. The video is then shared on social media and gets picked up by publications, websites, etc., and the loop continues.

However, it is important to keep in mind that you can’t always tell which video will for sure go viral. What used to be popular in the past might not work today.

But despite everything, here are some best practices that can help you make a viral video.


Tips on how to make a viral video


1.     Be emotive

A viral video heavily contains the element of emotion. But it doesn’t always mean that the audience will receive the video positively.

Sometimes, a video can gain infamy and receive immense backlash. As a marketer, that’s obviously not what you want.

So, when you plan to make a viral video, aim for humor and joy. Try to make people feel good and you’ll have a winner.

Here’s one we can’t stop thinking about from Blue’s Clues’ very own Steve.


Read more: How to Use Video to Trigger Customer Emotions


2.     Share it multiple times

People generally assume that when a video goes viral, it happens organically. Many times, it can be the case.

But sometimes, a video goes viral when it is boosted through advertising or promoted by various media platforms or prominent celebrities.

So, don’t forget to share your video on multiple channels. Visibility is important to make something gain momentum.


3.     Create shorter content

On social media, it is difficult to keep new viewers hooked for a long time. To get around limited attention spans, keep your video short and sweet.

Generally, a cold audience is not interested in watching a 15-minute video, so limit yours to a few seconds or a minute.


4.     Try to stay relevant

Make sure that you stay up to date with the latest trending topics, hashtags, memes, and other current events.

After this, try to create content that aligns with things that are relevant. It’ll help you ride the trending wave and more people will be able to discover you and your brand.

For example, when Taylor Swift released “I Bet You Think About Me” from the vault, Duolingo came out with this hilarious TikTok stanning the singer:

@duolingo The only way to honor our queen today @taylorswift! #duolingo #swifttok #taylorswift #taylornation #redscarf #unlockit #jakegyllenhaal ♬ apple pay w brittany laugh – requiem for a meme


5.     Interact more

Posting a video and then waiting for it to blow up does not always work.

So, after you upload your video, stay engaged on social media, try to get it shared, monitor the engagement, and interact with the audience.

When the video goes viral, you will also have to interact with different media outlets so that your content reaches more people.


Brands engaging with content


6.     Give more than you get

This is a general attitude that you should have while creating viral video content. Apart from staying relevant, it’s also important you make valuable videos.

When you create inspiring, educational, or informative content, the audience will be more willing to like, share, and comment.

This will help you build an authentic fan following.

Here’s a really great video from fashion designer and YouTuber Justine Leconte that’s value-packed.



7.     Keep the video format in mind

You have to make a video that is optimized to be shared on social media. This means that you have to consider the device on which the audience is viewing your content which, most of the time, is mobile phones.

Another thing to consider is that most of the videos watched on social media; specifically Facebook and LinkedIn, autoplay on mute, so optimize your video accordingly and make the first few seconds enticing.

Read more: 6 Best Practices for LinkedIn Videos


8.     Add a catchy title to your video

Before you share your video on social media, do some research and find keywords relevant to your video’s content. See which ones get the most clicks per month and add them to the title of your video.

For keyword research you could use Keywords.io, Ahrefs, or TubeBuddy (a tool for YouTube).

This is a vital part of search engine optimization (SEO). It will optimize your title and allow the various social media platforms where you upload your video to recognize and recommend it to people. This will make the video rank well.


Sample of good youtube titles


9.     Create an appealing thumbnail

Another thing that is equally as important as the title is the thumbnail.

It’s the first thing a social media user will see when they spot your video, especially if that platform has no autoplay.

So, create a custom thumbnail that both suits your video and demands a click from the viewers.


thumbnail examples - branding


3 of our favorite viral brand videos

We’ll wrap up with three of our favorite viral videos from brands.


Dumb Ways to Die

Dumb Ways to Die is a game that came to be when a few members of the Metro Trains Melbourne operation team tried to come up with a way to educate children about safety in a fun and engaging way. The team has a YouTube channels that’s full of engaging content. Here’s one that went viral.



Volvo Trucks – The Epic Split

The Volvo Truck ad featuring Van Damme performing an epic split gained legendary status and is hailed as one of the best ads ever made.

The ad proved to be really effective. Volvo Truck sales went up 31% and Van Damme’s career picked up speed too.



Eyes. Lips. Face

Elf Cosmetics’ “Eyes. Lips. Face” original song and TikTok challenge took social media by storm.  The campaign is now a masterclass for brands on how to use TikTok for marketing.

Here’s a case study that talks about the success of this campaign:



Duolingo Push

When Duolingo’s slightly passive-aggressive push notifications became a meme, the company leaned into it and came out with this hilarious video that went viral and everyone familiar with the app appreciated how Duolingo made great content out of a funny internet joke about them.



Wrapping up

Viral content can boost your brand’s visibility and allow you to grow your following. The main goal is to brainstorm ideas and create something unique.

Luck and timing also play a role in virality, so don’t lose hope if your first few videos don’t do as well as you wanted.  Stick with it for a while and keep experimenting.

And here’s a crazy idea: don’t be so hell-bent on creating viral video content alone. Have a balanced approach and try to focus on quality and value. This way you’ll never go wrong.

If you need help creating videos for your business, get in touch with us. We’re a video production company that loves to make videos that get results.

Want a video for your business?


Posted by MotionCue

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