What determines whether content goes viral? If there was a “secret sauce”, surely we’d all know by now. But there isn’t, so we’re left with the art of experimentation. Analyzing the posts that have gone viral over the past year can help us get an idea of what people love. This is what agencies do that offer professional SEO services in Los Angeles.
Content marketing is all about shareability. Identifying what’s shareable is key here, so we are going to go into some of the different elements that were found in most of 2015’s viral content.
Using a combination of these elements won’t guarantee viral content, but it can very well boost your chances of creating content that is shareable.
The following analysis excludes posts of celebrities, musicians and films, which have no trouble going viral.
Surprise People with Fun Facts & Images
If you head over to Facebook, you’ll see a boat load of people sharing memes and factual content pieces. What people love more than funny memes is facts and images, aka infographics. According to Marketo’s 2013 survey about why people share on Facebook, it found that folks like sharing content that is surprising and amazing.
A prime example is the post “Champagne Prevents Alzheimer’s Disease” which received nearly one million shares.
Leverage a Trend
Any SEO agency will tell you that in marketing, the trend is your friend. This is why it’s encouraged you participate in hot topics, either by commenting or posting your own content. Doing so can help gain visibility and traction for your own website. This year has been big on Zombie topics, which is why the following example post did so well: “Zombie-Themed Cruise”, which received over 400K comments.
Be an Inspiration to People
Inspirational quotes continue to be popular across social media, especially those written on images. This can be in a variety of forms, including stories, analogies and so on. One post that did this fairly well is: “51 Beautiful Sentences in Literature”, which received 1.4 million shares.
Create Posts with Riveting Picture Lists
Lists are popular, images are popular – put them together and you have a nice formula for creating something shareable. Picture lists is what they’re called and they are taking the Internet by storm. Here’s one that did particular well called: “52 Places to Go In 2015”, which received over a half million shares. It was the fourth most shared post from the New York Times in 2015. What can you say – people love beautiful images of far off places.
Images don’t have to be mesmerizing to work either. There’s another example from The Guardian, which captured grim imagery of the world around us. It was visually-rich and thought-provoking. It happened to be the second most shared piece of content from the site this year.
Babies, Animals and All Things that Are Cute
We’ve seen enough cats across YouTube, Instagram and even Facebook and Twitter. It’s so prominent that it’s become a bit cliché. Dress up a furry cat in a cute outfit and you have yourself a pandemic (extreme version of “viral”). It’s a fact, millions of people love things that are cute, including babies, animals, and especially baby animals. Just take this post for example: “This Site Will Make a Stuffed Animal Clone of Your Pet”, which received over a half million shares.
Make People Laugh
People love being entertained and sharing content that they find amusing. According to a study done by the New York Times, the most common reason people share content is to amuse their friends. So if you can make people laugh, then they will share the laughs with people they know. And an example of this is: “Earth Endangered by New Strain of Fact-Resistant Humans”, which received 1.4 million shares.
The most important thing to keep in mind when creating content is to focus on what people want – facts and entertainment that is visually appealing. An SEO agency can help you create this type of content for your brand.