Video killed the radio button #socialmediageek

Great session today on the importance of viral content and how to create it. Called Star Wars, Lego and Cats! – Learn how to make a unique viral that gets people sharing (AND WIN STUFF!),  organisers Equator certainly displayed a knowledge of what would make their target audience bite with that title! Kudos for the excellent promotional items too, certainly been causing a stir on my Twitter feed today.

Stephen Noble gave an excellent presentation on viral videos – what works, why it works, why it’s important and what to avoid. He provided 5 main pointers on what to include to increase your chances of success:

  • Originality – the screaming sheep video (google it!) is a great example of this. People don’t want to see the same old rehashes of pratfalls and ironic commentaries, they want something new
  • Real or fake? – if viewers watch it several times and they’re *still* not sure if you faked it or not (of course you did) then you’re on to a winner
  • Emotion – people respond to emotion more than anything, so reach out and touch them
  • Remix – the mashup is one of this decade’s biggest winners in social media, and youtube is prime real estate for remixing other content. Just make sure you don’t infringe copyright or you might get more feedback than you really want…
  • Preview – don’t forget about your still-frame thumbnail! If it’s boring, change it. You can even cheat

My organisation are still quite some distance from being able to create our own viral content – the necessary formality that comes with being a governmental agency means that if we ever do so it will be entirely accidental and probably damaging! This was a useful session though and I hope to be able to put some of the ideas into action sooner rather than later. Watch this space…

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