Both of these news and entertainment organizations regularly produce content that people all over the world go crazy over. The site has had its share of criticism for the type of content it features, but if we focus on why this content goes viral we can gain important insight into how marketers can create better content that is positioned for the same success.
BuzzFeed provides shareable breaking news, original reporting, entertainment, and video across the social web to its global audience of more than million users. BuzzFeed understands the importance of packaging content for social so that it spreads.
Their content is formatted and distributed across a variety of mediums and channels. Content on BuzzFeed is posted to their website and shared across social, making it easy for their audience to find, consume and share the content. By understanding the demographics, interests, passions and social environments of your audience, you can deliver content they crave.
BuzzFeed knows the secret to great content begins with bunnies, kittens, celebrities, Sriracha and cheese. They know what people want to read about and they give it to them. This might not be your story angle, but there are elements that epic stories require that you can steal from BuzzFeed and WSHH and apply directly to your own content strategy. Your content is more likely to be shared if it helps your readers make a statement about who they are and what they believe. WSHH, does this really well. They know their audience well and deliver content that taps into the emotions of their viewers.
The site is well-known for delivering content that evokes shock and awe, surprise, and anger in their viewers. These high-arousal emotions are powerful motivators and drive people to act. Positive stories that make people feel good are more likely to be shared, so create those. Give your audience something they can use. This is key to creating viral content — tell your readers to share it. They will. Finish your article, blog post, or social post with a call to action.
Sounds pretty lame, but trust me, it works. So make it easy by telling them what the next steps are and what you want them to do. When we experience a story, we naturally want to root for someone to win. Make this easy for your audience by including the right characters in your story that allow us to latch on to a character and invest our emotions into the experience.
Optimize your content to be click-worthy. Avoid creating headlines that are too vague or too specific. The most successful headlines are those that create a curiosity gap. Content with a great image is more likely to be shared than those without. Going forward, include a share image with all the content you deliver. Create your content with sharing in mind. Make it easy to share and ask people to do it. It should be obvious and easy for people to share your content across many social media sites, especially Facebook.
Include share buttons, a clear call to action and the right share text that will motivate others to click, read, and share again. Test your headlines, test your images, test your share buttons, test it all.
And then test it again. Testing can be as simple and as low-cost as creating two different links for one piece of content, posting it to your Facebook wall with two different headlines, targeting two different cities with similar demographics and population, and timing it.
The link with the most clicks wins. Another easy way to test your content is to use Google and Facebook Analytics to learn about what content people are interacting with the most and then use these insights to improve your approach on an ongoing basis.
These tips are helpful and have certainly proven their worth, driving insane amounts of traffic, engagement, and views for sites like WorldStar Hip Hop and BuzzFeed.
So, focus your attention and effort on what you can control; creating epic content that people crave and that people want to share. Then, when all is said and done, close your eyes, cross your fingers and hope that today is your lucky day! What are some of your go-to strategies for creating content that gets shared? Ross Simmonds is a digital marketing strategist who has worked with everything from Fortune companies to startups to drive results using digital marketing and technology. Content Marketing , Marketing , Storytelling 2 Comments.
Creating viral content is part science, part art, and part luck. Now, most people are familiar with BuzzFeed but WorldStar might not be something on your radar.
You might be wondering… Huh? BuzzFeed The site has had its share of criticism for the type of content it features, but if we focus on why this content goes viral we can gain important insight into how marketers can create better content that is positioned for the same success. So, how do they do it? This is how you create content worth sharing.
Create the right content for your audience BuzzFeed knows the secret to great content begins with bunnies, kittens, celebrities, Sriracha and cheese. We call these high-arousal emotions, such as awe, anger, excitement, joy, surprise, or anxiety. Create Content With Compelling Characters Everyone hates bad guys and bullies, but every story needs a villain and a hero. It all begins with a stellar headline: Create a curiosity gap Avoid creating headlines that are too vague or too specific.
Use visuals that catch attention Content with a great image is more likely to be shared than those without. Some examples of a great share image: It creates curiosity The cutest animal ever! Something vs. Make your content easy to share Facebook is where things go viral.
Test everything, test it again. Conclusion These tips are helpful and have certainly proven their worth, driving insane amounts of traffic, engagement, and views for sites like WorldStar Hip Hop and BuzzFeed.
About Ross Simmonds Ross Simmonds is a digital marketing strategist who has worked with everything from Fortune companies to startups to drive results using digital marketing and technology.
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