What is viral content?
Let’s first understand what viral content is and what tasks it accomplishes.
Viral content is content that users actively distribute online and that generates new targeted traffic.
The main tasks that viral content solves:
- Attract the attention of the target audience
- Attract the attention of opinion leaders and experts
- Attract targeted traffic to the site
You may get the idea that viral content is a miracle or a game of heads and tails (i.e., whether you’re lucky or not). But in fact, the viral content is a technology that consists of 20% of a well-chosen content format and 80% of content promotion.
Criteria for virality, or how do you make content go viral?
In the book “Infectious,” author Jonah Berger analyzed 7,000 articles that were published in the New York Times. He identified 6 key factors that influence virality. Here are these 6 steps (very similar to “steps”).
Social currency (S).
Content can act as social currency. According to Berger, if we find some new, unique and very useful content, we willingly share it. The author believes that the factor of innovation and, to some extent, bragging is at work here.
People who have found such content want to stand out with it, showing that they are the cutting-edge researchers and the owners of unique materials.
So it’s our job all the time to work on the kind of content that allows our readers to form a similar image.
By trigger, Jonah means associating content with something that is constantly in the focus of your target audience and your activity. In other words, if I’m doing content marketing, I need to create content that people will like – and at the same time, when they think of content marketing, they will think of me.
It’s simple here – content that leaves the reader caring, encourages the reader to share it. Content can evoke any emotion: anger, joy, shock, laughter, sympathy, compassion – but the important thing is to have them!
Social Evidence (P)
Back to the writings of the famous Dr. Cialdini, published in his book, The Psychology of Influence. In the book, the doctor talked about the fact that people tend to repeat the actions of others. So if your content starts collecting likes, reposts, and comments, other people will also willingly join in.
Practical Value (P)
This point is very similar to the first. If people have found the answer to their question or have been able to solve their problem with your content, they are happy to share it.
We live stories. We remember stories. We share stories. It’s been that way since the dawn of time. Below in this article you will find a vivid confirmation of why I use stories in my texts and what results stories can produce.
With the criteria of virality solved, we can safely move on to the practical part.
How to articles.
What do you think people search for most often on the Internet? Most of the time, it’s asking how to do something.
How to cure bronchitis?
How to put up wallpaper?
How to install a new theme on a website?
I’m guessing you’ve typed in one of these questions yourself more than once, hoping to find an article that details how to solve your problem. That’s the challenge of a How to article.
How to properly prepare a How to article
Before you start writing such an article, you need to accurately recreate the portrait of the client: understand his problems and define his desires. You have to take him by the hand from point A to point B and explain step by step how to solve his problem.
However, there is one important nuance.
What do you think distinguishes a good doctor from a real expert?
A good doctor will simply tell you how to cure the disease, while an expert will tell you more about the causes of the disease, its effects, and methods of prevention.
Which one will you trust more?
Similarly, you should treat the preparation of an article in the style of How to. Its structure should be as follows:
- The problem. The causes of its emergence and consequences
- The solution .
- Steps. How to make the solution a reality
- Conclusion .
Before writing an article in the style of How to, it is best to prepare from the beginning a checklist and write in it each step. This will help you not to miss any of the important details.