In the past, it was very hard to become famous. Thanks to social media and YouTube, however, any of us – and any of the creative things we do – can become famous literally overnight. Of all the hours of videos that get uploaded to YouTube every day, only a small percentage gets millions of views and becomes a cultural moment. What sets these videos apart?
Tastemakers, communities of participation and unexpectedness are the three key things that can make your content go viral. In 2012, Jimmy Kimmel shared a video of a rainbow that a person in the Yosemite mountain park had uploaded. The video instantly went viral because Jimmy Kimmel, as a tastemaker, alerted a huge community of the video and many of them went to check it out.
Unlike the one-way communication of the twentieth century, the community participation that social media provides lets everyone become a part of a new phenomenon. People become a part of a phenomenon by spreading it or doing something new with it, such as creating memes and parodies.
To create content that goes viral on social media, you have to focus on content that ignites creativity within a community. This creativity and interest can be used for new versions of your content, to make fun of whatever you have posted and to set a trend. People don’t just enjoy content, they participate in it. By being totally surprising and humorous, you could get your content viewed by millions of people who want to participate in what you are doing.