#BGB Tutorial: Creating Viral Content Without Selling Your Soul

by Brenda Berg

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Let’s face it; the internet is currently becoming overloaded with content. From blogs to websites, there’s so much competition from around the world that it can be overwhelming and very daunting even to think that your content could shine through and become viral.

But why wouldn’t it if you’ve created the right content?

After all, it happens to people and businesses around the world every day. All it takes is to upload the right post, article, photo or video and you never know what’s going to happen next. You could wake up the next day with a million hits!

Fortunately, you don’t need to sell your soul for content that’s this good; you can make it yourself! Today, we’ll explore how to do just that.

Only Valuable Posts Go Viral

Before we delve into this, I will briefly describe a valuable post. This could be valuable entertainment, or rich with content. I define a valuable post as a post where someone can take away something from it that will benefit their lives and/or business.

And only valuable posts will go viral. Take a look at this chart. This shows how many posts across Buzzfeed and the New York Times are shared. As you can see, only a few posts are actually viral on the sites. Obviously, if these companies could continuously upload viral content, they would.

As you can imagine, these viral posts will give the website a lot of credibility and reputation, so their other posts will have thousands, if not millions of hits too; but still not as much as their top post. So, the takeaway from this is not to churn out post after post, but rather focus on the quality of your content.

Make sure that you consider how long your post is going to be. If you’re describing something that requires a lot of detail, you may need to extend your posts to around the 2,000-word mark or above.

If you’re creating a typical article, try to keep in under 1,000-words. It is essential that you monitor your word count, especially when you’re posting on social media networks. You can track your word count in real-time using tools like Easy Word Count, which leads us onto our next point…

Make Your Posts “Digestible”

I’m talking about list articles. List articles are much more likely to hit viral levels because they are scannable and can be “consumed” by readers easily. For example, if you’re doing an article titled ‘Top 10 Travel Destinations” (like this article about 52 Places to Go), it had half a million shares, and readers could simply read the headlines of each place and look at the pictures.

Alternatively, they could read the bits of text under each destination if they wanted more information, but they don’t have to. Making sure your posts are easily digestible and that the vistor can read at their own pace is essential.

You’ll also want to make sure that you check your grammar to ensure that your content is readable and flows nicely. You can use online tools, such as State of Writing, to make this easier and to brush up on your grammar knowledge.

Be Visual

Visuals are the way forward when it comes to creating viral posts. By visuals, I’m talking about images and videos. However, these are simply umbrella terms and could mean anything from infographics, memes, GIFs, maps, animations, and much more.

This is your chance to get really creative. Images and videos are much easier to digest compared to reading the text and your readers are much more likely to share content that includes them.

Be Original

The internet is full of so much regurgitated rubbish that it’s become very difficult to know what’s original and what isn’t. However, as a basic rule of thumb, don’t set out to replicate already existing viral content. The chances are that your readers have already seen the viral content and won’t care for yours.

Instead, try and think outside the box for something that nobody else has done. When writing articles and captions, you can use online tools, such as Academized or Plagium, to ensure that your content doesn’t exist anywhere else.

Be Inspirational

It’s very common for people to fall into ruts in their life and it can change everything when they read something that’s motivational and inspirational. For example, this article by BuzzFeed, based around being inspirational, managed to conjure up over 1.4m shares and counting.

Again, as you can see, this writer managed to choose a topic that would reach out to people, made it easily digestible and as a result, was able to publish an article that went viral.

Encourage Engagement

There’s nothing more engaging than reading through a piece of content and thinking “Wow, that’s amazing.”. Then, when you get down to the end of the content, the article ends with a question that leaves you pondering the subject for many days to come.

Invest time in creating these thought-provoking topics and questions and include them in relevant and trending articles. This will boost your engagement rates and increase your chances of publishing something viral.

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