How To Go Viral

Going viral is the Holy Grail of the Internet. It is essentially when something is shared – a lot – the modern-day water-cooler talk. What does it take to go viral? Here is your step-by-step guide:

  1. Make or capture something awesome.
  2. Share it online.
  3. Go viral!

It’s easy, isn’t it? We’ve all posted something that’s gone viral, right? Wait… no?

The truth is, you can’t make something go viral. You don’t decide if something goes viral or not. You can make something awesome and hope it goes viral, but that’s all.

The special formula for making something viral is this: awesome content + right time + right place = viral.

You can control the first one, and you might be able to hit the second or third one by reading the temperature of the Internet right, but you can’t control the both the time and place. Ever.

This week I saw this awesome story about  Target on The Huffington Post:

Target Employees Help Teen Prep For His First Interview, Just Because

 Included in the story is this video:

Right now, the original photo has more than 55,000 likes on Facebook. Here’s the caption that went along with it:



Was this part of some brilliant marketing plan? No. In fact, Target (the corporation) had absolutely nothing to do with this story. But what they have done is create a culture in which two employees want to help a young man purchase a tie, tie it, and give him advice. That’s awesome.

And that is how you go viral – be awesome, make something awesome, capture something awesome – and share it. The rest is up to the Internet.

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