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How To Go Viral: Lessons from the Most Shared Content


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What is every marketer dying to know? How to craft content and headlines that generate tons of shares and go completely viral. But even with A/B testing it can seem like a fruitless guessing game.

It's time we stop guessing. In this on-demand webinar, content sharability expert BuzzSumo Director Steve Rayson dives into how to 10x shares with proven examples from the most shared content in 2015. We reviewed the top content and headlines from a range of industries and will reveal the strategies, content and headlines that went viral in 2015.

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How To Go Viral: Lessons from the Most Shared Content

  1. 1. December 3, 2015 How to Go Viral: Lessons from the Most Shared Content in 2015
  2. 2. THE HOST★   ★   Byron White CEO & Founder, WriterAccess Chair, Content Marketing Conference Author of The Content Marketing Roadmap and 103 Content Marketing Tools @byronwhite | @writeraccess
  3. 3. THE EXPERT★   ★   Steve Rayson Director, BuzzSumo Director, Anders Pink B2B Marketing Expert at waking up at 3am to do a webinar (spends January – February in New Zealand so webinars are in the middle of the night!) @steverayson | @buzzsumo
  4. 4. How  To  Go  Viral   Insights  from  the  Most  Shared  Content  of  2015  
  5. 5. Viral  Posts  Are  Outliers   #WriteOn  
  6. 6. #WriteOn  
  7. 7. InsighCul  Outliers   •  We  can  learn  from  viral  posts  and  examine  the   elements  that  helped  them  go  viral   •  Gain  insights  into  what  we  can  do  to  make  our   content  more  shareable     #WriteOn  
  8. 8. Not  Looking  at  Celebrity  Content  
  9. 9. How  To  Go  Viral   2015  Examples   #WriteOn  
  10. 10. 1.  Surprising   Champagne  Prevents  Alzheimer’s  Disease  (938,000  shares)  
  11. 11. 1.  Surprising   The  Cause  of  AddicXon  Is  Not  What  You  Think  (2m  shares)  
  12. 12. 2.  Leverage  A  Trend   Zombie-­‐Themed  Cruise  (1.5m  shares  &  400,000  comments)  
  13. 13. 3)  Inspire  people   51  BeauXful  Sentences  in  Literature  (1.4m  shares)  
  14. 14. 4)  Create  Stunning  Picture  List  Posts   52  Places  To  Go   In  2015     (522,000  shares)  
  15. 15. The  Guardian:  OverpopulaXon,  OverconsumpXon  in  Pictures   (700,000  shares)  
  16. 16. 5)  Exploit  Cute  Animals  &  Babies   This  Site  Will  Make  A  Stuffed   Animal  Clone  Of  Your  Pet   (683,000  shares)  
  17. 17. 6)  Be  Amusing   Earth  Endangered  By  New   Strain  Of  Fact-­‐Resistant   Humans     (1.4m  Shares)  
  18. 18. When  You  Realise,  You’ve  Had  One  Too  Many  (827,000  shares)  
  19. 19. 7)  Be  Controversial  
  20. 20. InteracXons  (likes/shares)  of  Donald  Trump’s  FB  Posts  
  21. 21. 8)  Quiz  People   What  Is  Your  Most   Dominant  Character   Trait?   (3.9m  shares)  
  22. 22. 8)  Quiz  People   The  Color  Quiz  (5m  Shares)  
  23. 23. Baby  Name  Popularity  InteracXon  (781,000  shares)  
  24. 24. 9)  Provide  Warnings  
  25. 25. 10)  Tell  Them  The  Secrets  Of  Success   How  Successful  People  Stay  Calm  (127,000  shares)  
  26. 26. 10)  Tell  Them  The  Secrets  Of  Success  
  27. 27. 11)  Health,  Diet  &  Fitness  Tips  
  28. 28. The  Only  12  Exercises  You  Need  (968,000  shares)  
  29. 29. 12)  Secrets  of  Love  &  DaXng  
  30. 30. To  Fall  In  Love  With   Anyone,  Do  This.   (885,000  shares)  
  31. 31. This  Is  How  We  Date  Now  (1.6m  shares)  
  32. 32. 13)  Secret  To  A  Long  Life   109-­‐Year  Old  Woman   Says  Secret  To  Long   Life  Is  Avoiding  Men   (1.9m  shares)  
  33. 33. 14)  Share  A  Heart  Warming  Story   Husband  108,  Wife   105,  Celebrate  82   Years  Married   (580,000  shares)  
  34. 34. What  Can  We  Learn?   •  Viral  posts  are  outliers   •  Not  just  about  content  but  igniXon  and   amplificaXon   •  Are  there  common  elements  to  viral   posts  that  make  them  shareable?   •  Combined  elements  eg  quiz  on  a   popular  topic,  picture  list  posts  
  35. 35. Shareable  Elements?   EmoXonal   element   Content   Element   Topic  Element   Format   Element   Amusing   Surprising   Heart  Warming   BeauXful   Inspiring   Warning   Shocking   Images   Facts   Charts   Quotes   Video   InteracXon   Trending  topic   (e.g.  Zombies)   Health  &   fitness   Cats  &  Dogs   Babies   Long  Life   Love     List  Post   Quiz   Story   CuraXon   Research   Insights   PracXcal  Tips    
  36. 36. Content  CreaXon  QuesXons   •  Does  the  content  have  an  emoXonal  element?   •  Does  the  post  include  shareable  content  types,   such  as  facts,  images  and  quotes?   •  Is  the  topic  one  that  resonates  with  your   audience?  Is  it  trending?   •  Is  the  format  one  that  works  well  with  your   audience,  such  as  pracXcal  Xps  or  a  quiz?  
  37. 37. Headlines   •  Great  headlines  maker   •  Can  you  use  the  shareable  elements?   1.  EmoXonal  words  e.g.  Surprising   2.  Topic  e.g.  Zombies   3.  Type  e.g.  Facts   4.  Format  e.g.  List  post   “10  surprising  facts  about  Zombies”  
  38. 38. Quiz  Results   To  Fall  In  Love  With  Anyone,  Do  This       109-­‐Year  Old  Woman  Says  Secret  To  Long  Life   Is  Avoiding  Men           What  Is  Your  Most  Dominant  Character  Trait?     The  Cause  of  AddicXon  Is  Not  What  You  Think       The  Only  12  Exercises  You  Need     0.89m     1.9m       3.9m     2m     0.97m   #WriteOn  
  39. 39. Thank  You   @Buzzsumo          @steverayson  
  40. 40. JOIN US IN VEGAS!★   ★   CONTENT MARKETING CONFERENCE 2016   MAY 17-19, 2016 | LAS VEGAS, NV | THE RIO ALL-SUITE HOTEL 3 Days 30+ Expert Speakers 300 Engaged Attendees 3,000+ Tips, Tricks, Hacks, and Tactics    
  41. 41. THANK YOU!★   ★   Let’s stay in touch: @SteveRayson @WriterAccess 617-227-8800 Join us each month at