Video Production

5 Traits of Viral Videos

viral videos
Video Production: What Makes a Video Go Viral?

Video Production
Okay, so if you work in video production long enough, whether it’s signature video production or testimonial video production, eventually you get asked, can I have a viral video? I’d like one too.

Now, viral videos aren’t something that you can control. These things happen on their own. However, commercial videos that have become viral share a couple of different traits, and I want to break those down for you so you can see what they are.

Number one is, it needs to be a subject of mass interest. A lot of people need to be interested in what it is. People like to share things with people that they think their friends are going to be interested in. It can’t be too specific, it needs to have a broad appeal.

Number two, it needs to have an insane hook right off the bat. Think about the Old Spice commercial. I’m on a horse. The thing was completely gonzo. You had no idea what you were watching from the moment that you started, and you couldn’t stop watching it because it was insane. Keep in mind, it takes a lot of creativity and also a lot of testicular fortitude to allow yourself to look absolutely gonzo in front of your potential clients. But it works. It captures their attention. So stand up, man up, and make that part of your campaign.

Number three, you need a quick description of the problem. You need to keep it short, you need to keep it pithy because you need to move on to number four. Because number four is alternating between the product and the emotion. Think back to Dollar Shave Club. They did a great job of going product, joke, product, joke, product, joke, product, joke, and it kept you interested so you kept hearing more about the product while they were busy telling you jokes.

Number five is, you need an aggressive paid distribution platform on the first week that the video is released. You need to get it in front of enough people so that they can start sharing it so that you can get some momentum behind the video. Do that in week one and push it as hard as you can.

Those are the five steps of putting yourself in the position where your video might go viral.

Thanks to Scott Pollard, just for being a heck of a great guy. And if you’ve got questions, email me at