Social Media

Why Do Videos Go Viral? by Mike Takahashi

Harvard Business Review has an insightful article on why videos go viral.

Unruly, a marketing technology company, offers an answer. Its analysis of some 430 billion video views and 100,000 consumer data points reveals the two most powerful drivers of viral success: psychological response (how the content makes you feel) and social motivation (why you want to share it).

The New York Times also wrote about this last year in Why That Video Went Viral.

“People share things they have strong emotional reactions to, especially strong positive reactions,” Dr. Guadagno said.

Social motivation has also been driven by ego.

But pressing the share button can also be driven by ego. Constructing and refining an online persona has become a daily task for many, experts say; posting a link that evokes laughter or gasps can confer status on the sharer.



How UCLA used Buzzfeed to generate some of its highest engagement ever on social media by Mike Takahashi

Today, a large amount of traffic is driven via social media sharing. As readers have become minipublishers, content that becomes viral is often emotional and easy to understand. Enter Buzzfeed. Love them or hate them, Buzzfeed has changed the way people consume content online. Famous for lists and quizzes, it has now become a disruptive force in the online publishing industry, overtaking traditional publishers like the NY Times.

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Instagram's 3 keys to success by Mike Takahashi

At the beginning of 2012, Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom sat down with Kevin Rose to talk about the company, how it was started and what made it successful. A few months later, it was sold to Facebook for $1 billion.

When Instagram started it had 3 goals:

  1. Make photos beautiful and inspiring
  2. Integrate social so people would share photos
  3. Create a great user experience
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Will 2013 be the year of the video meme? by Mike Takahashi

According to Billboard, as of last week the Harlem Shake has had a combined view of 30 million+ on YouTube. It’s the latest viral hit to succeed Psy’s Gangnum Style. Everyone from UCLA to Facebook employees and Obama have created their own versions of the Harlem Shake.

Why is it so popular? At its core, the Harlem Shake is an extended 30 second video meme. As Josh Constine explains, “A five-minute video? Ain’t nobody got time for that. Not to watch one, or to make one. But Harlem Shake dance videos are capped at 30 seconds. That’s why we’re so willing to watch just one more incarnation, and why it’s easy to recruit friends to make them.”

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