3 Tips for creating viral content 

A couple of pre-requests:  For purposes of copyright law any original creation may be referred to as the “Work.”  I’ll use the word Work and Content interchangeably.  Also, this short article is not intended to be an exhaustive survey of content creation.  For more tips consider booking a free consolation or paid-strategy session. 

Whether you are creating a faith-based podcast, music, book or video project, these tips can be helpful.  In creating content there are numerous considerations such as where and how you plan to distribute and market the creation.   But here are 3 tips I recently discussed with a client geared toward radio show and podcast production.  Content sometimes goes viral due to unforeseen circumstances and due to dumb luck.  But generally speaking I have observed these three points to be consistent with viral or otherwise successful content.  

So what are the three tips?  Produce something that is Entertaining, Interesting and Useful.  All three of these tips are closely related but can be looked at differently.  

  1. Entertaining.  Does the content trigger emotional responses?  Is it fun, sad, funny, inspiring?  For purposes of entertainment, quality is also important (as a general rule).  Example. For film, a solid script and storyline can be completely ruined with poor production quality.  For a podcast, background noise or poor audio can turn off listeners.  To be entertaining, the content and quality must be aligned to the standards of your demographic.  There are times when poor quality can be artistically appealing.  But generally speaking keep things fun, keep things unique and make sure the quality of your production makes watching, listening or reading enjoyable.  
  2. Interesting.  Consider your personality when considering how you will deliver your content.  For radio or podcasts where a host is interviewing a guest, often times a free-flowing conversation can be far more interesting than scripted dialog.  However, a show like the Exorcist Files is carefully choreographed in terms of scripting and narrative.  So consider your content, consider your personalty and remember your intended audience.  Unless you are producing an Exorcist Files type of show (which is awesome and incorporates 3d sound) there are two ways to deliver your podcast run of show.  i. Write out a script, word for work, or ii. use bullet points and keep your talk more organic.  Writing a script and reading word for word can be amazing or really boring.  For me, bullet points work better (at least as far as it relates to my radio talk show).   REMEMBER: The type of content and type of show is key here.  ALSO, I always tell clients to think about what works best for them in terms of planning every detail or letting things flow more organically.  
  3. Useful.  Does the content have some utility?  If the content is entertaining and interesting it is naturally useful.  But is there more?  Does your content teach something, inspire or call-to-action?  Is your content following a news-cycle that becomes irrelevant after a few days or does your content stand the test of time?  There is no wrong answer.  News is important and can be historical or archived.  Timeless content may have more commercial success long-term but not always.  The main thing here is to understand the content’s utility or potential utility.   Making something useful for your niche market or for a broader market is one part, the next question is whether or not your audience can easily identify said usefulness.  If not, you will be required to convey the usefulness with marketing and promotion.  

Additional considerations would be the who, why, what, when, where analysis.   I’ll save further analysis for another post. 

Good luck!