Viral videos have made a lot of individuals and groups (businesses included) famous all over the world for years. Is there really a secret to creating a million-view worthy clip, though? There isn’t a definite one, but there surely are a few characteristics almost all viral videos possess.
Short but memorable – People’s attention spans are getting shorter and shorter, as evidenced by a survey published in the New York Times which states that more than 19 percent of people leave a video merely 10 seconds in. In stark contrast, viral videos counteract this trend by keeping a relatively short clip ultra-memorable by putting everything interesting at the forefront. If you’re aiming to create a viral video, never save the best for last.
Evokes emotion – Take the case of South Korean musician Psy, whose video Gangnam Style has garnered a mammoth 2 billion views already. What does his video have to garner that much following? It’s pretty simple: Psy’s seemingly awkward dance moves and the hilarious video themes—it elicited happiness. It also works like this: if someone told you an extremely funny joke, you’re highly likely to share it with others.
Promotes action – A call to action is the most explicit way for a video to go viral, whether conveyed directly or not. A perfect example would be the famed “Ice Bucket Challenge” wherein a participant “nominates” the challenge’s next takers. The result is an almost endless chain.