15 Elements of a Viral Content Marketing Campaign

By Rich Homer Thursday, June 21, 2018
To have a content marketing campaign go viral is the goal of all marketers. How to make it happen? That’s what many people out there want to know.
viral content marketing campaign

Well, the answer is complicated. Viral campaigns require more than knowledge and experience, which means that you don’t have to be an experts to achieve your goal.

In fact, there are elements that help to push a content marketing campaign to go viral. That’s what I’ll share with you in this article. When you hit the “publish button”, you’ll see impressive results.

If you are striving to produce a content marketing campaign, here’s what you can do to make it a hit.

1. Define the purpose of your content

The first and the most important thing you need is to identify the purpose of your content. If you cannot do this, not only will you write down an incoherent piece, but you will also have difficulties in marketing it in the relevant channels.

Here are several goals you need to clarify before starting any campaign:
  • Define the end purpose of the content in regard of your business. (Is it to boost sales, to generate leads, or to create a new community, etc? The answer depends on what you need)
  • What is the core message of your content?
  • Who are your competitors and how much you know about them? (If the answer is not much, you should start researching more about them).

15 Elements of a Viral Content Marketing Campaign

2. Pay attention to headlines

Headlines are what people see first when they reach you content, and they work like doors to lead your audience to your content. So try to make it as appealing as possible.

Remember to insert strong word into your headlines and introductions to send your hooks deeper into your target audience. Moreover, headlines with emotional triggers are likely to better pull people’s attention than one doesn’t.

No matter whether you create articles, videos, postcard, and so on, the headlines are the most important thing to put your content in front of your target audience.

Crafting a great headline may take you a lot of time, yet you can do it by considering what your audience want and make them believe that they will have it by clicking your link.

3. Incite emotional response

People are likely to response to the content that incite emotions. One of the key elements of viral articles is that they incite high-arousal emotions. According to research, the leading viral emotions include awe, surprise, curiosity, amusement, excitement, astonishment, and uncertainty.

Specially, content that left people awe-inspired, excited, or amused were more likely to be shared than low-arousal content that incites contentment or sadness.

Interestingly, content that incites negative emotions such as anger and anxiety is also shared more.

Content Marketing  Emotions

4. Make your content super actionale

Creating content that push your readers to take action immediately is what all marketers need. To do so, content creators have to give concrete steps that make customers can act on right away - actionable steps.

You can whether include an “Action Step” at the end of each article or simply write in a style that brings about actionable information throughout an article. The two ways will both work.
Here is the model you can use to make your content actionale:

* Step 1: Create value and fix pain
This is where your headlines help by stating that you can offer a solution for audience’s pain and provide value for them. Anyway, it’s free and they’ll get various helpful advice, why not?

* Step 2: Build relationship
When you’ve pulled your audience in, you can build a relationship with them. If they haven’t had your contact, they can phone, email, or take any action you provide on your site to contact you.

* Step 3: Earn trust
In your article, try to prove that you deserve your audience’s trust. Bring about trustworthy information which is solid researched and experience-based.

* Step 4: Take action
In fact, based on these four steps, you can set up your plan to attack for an actionable content strategy.

5. Identify emerging trends and topics

People are likely to share content that are trending to prove that they are cool and updated. Use tools that helps to identify emerging trends and topics in your industry such as Buzzsumo and Google trends. Filter the data and create timely campaign that targets your broader audience.

6. Craft engaging and original content

Content is everywhere and if you want to be successful, you have to be the shiny diamond in the rough. To do this, you should make your content engaging and original.
Engaging content trigger your audience to watch and share more. No matter how informative and helpful your content is, nobody gives it more than a glance it’s boring. Remember that the more attractive your article is, the more people it reach and the more chances it goes viral.
Also, don’t forget to create your own, not other content. Imagine what will happen when your article, video or any pieces of content look like the same as many others’, even when you do it better than most of them, people will soon forget your brand. So, create original content is the critical element for all viral marketing campaign.

Great Content Marketing Strategy

7. Include visual materials

Including visual materials deserves an important part in content producing process, not only images, but also typography and layout. According to research, by adding a photo, you can boost retweets by 35%, and facebook post with an image can have 87% interaction rate compared with 4% from one without an image.

Regarding the layout of your content, people always struggle reading a long-form content without clear layout and breaks. Try to put your content into a clear layout and break it into short paragraph.

8. Ensure readability

Content goes viral only when it is readable. No matter how groundbreaking your information is, it is useless if people cannot read it. To appeal to the largest audience, your content has to reach a high level of reading comprehension.

However, keep in mind that being readable doesn’t mean being simple. Don’t try to simplify your content to make it become cliché, use common and familiar phrases rather than academic and complex one, and you can also watch the number of words in each sentence to improve readability.

9. Make use of industry leaders

Social proof is powerful. And it’s even doubled when you can get it from a leader of the industry.
If you have crafted some epic content and have built platforms to share it on, the act of reaching out to an industry leader for their thoughts on your work is an effective way to improve your content marketing efforts through social proof.

Content Marketing  Strategy

10. Reach out to audience concerning the same content

You can do this by two ways: using tools and your own networks. Many social platforms allow users to find the audience based on their activities and interests such as Google and Facebook. So you can use these tool to reach out to the people concerning the same area of content as you create. On the other hand, if you ever see any friend who constantly share the content related to yours, reach out to them and ask they to share your post.

11. Make it easy to share

After creating great content enough to attract your audience, don’t forget to make it easy to share. Many sites which don’t have sharing button or don’t make it easy to see will miss a chance to push content go viral.

If you want your content to go viral, make it easy to share!

12. Don’t give enough information

Research on human psyche has stated that people love being cast as detectives. So don’t give them enough information so that they feel fulfilled and don’t want to find out more. Better leave them a question, arouse acceptable annoyance to make them cannot ignore you. Make they think that just by following your content, they’ll find the right answer.

Viral Content Marketing Campaign

13. Take a calculated risk

Giving away as many products as you can afford for free or cheap can help to achieve more social media following. These following may last much longer than your viral content marketing. Let take an example, Virgin Airlines offered 1000 tickets at $9 several years ago. This costs them a lot of money but they gained over 16.000 Twitter followers from the experiment.

14. Find the right distribution channels

Social distribution is critical to get your content in front of your target audience. Use tools to study which channels your audience are likely to use more and which one your content performs best.

Build the plan to post your content on as many as social networks as possible to reach out to audience. SingleGrain recommends Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit, YouTube and Del.icio.us as top sites for reaching a viral effect of your content marketing.

15. Post your content during peak hours

Timing is important just as the content itself. According to research by Buzzsumo, the best days for your content to be shared are Monday and Tuesday. An average blog gets the most traffic around 11 a.m. For email marketing campaigns, the best time to send consumer promotion emails are between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.