What Makes “Viral” go Viral?

WOTELast week I spotted a video from a band I’d never heard of, doing a cover version of a song by another band I’d never heard of. I don’t even remember where I saw it, but I followed it to Youtube and found it charming enough to post on my Facebook page. Next thing I know, all my friends think I’m cool, hip, and influential (or so I surmise) ¬†and the band has become a sensation.

They’re called Walk Off The Earth, and they’ve recently appeared on Ellen; they’re being played on WFUV, New York’s oh-so-hip-and-influential radio station (90.7 FM), and the video has 38,537,979 views. That’s a lot. (Beyonc√©’s “Single Ladies” has 159,927,25, but that’s a number 1 international hit that’s been out for a couple of years.)

So how did they do it? A great song full of more hooks than a tacklebox; a pleasant-looking group of young people with three strong voices and excellent harmonies; and a tricky little performance gimmick that requires no special effects whatsoever. To me, it’s just catchy, fun, and a little bit hypnotic too; just the kind of thing you want to show to your friends.

I’m going to endeavor to keep this in mind. There is just no substitute for a clever idea that is skillfully executed.

This entry was posted in Brand Fans, Creative Thinking, Innovation, Marketing Tactics, Music, Sports and Entertainment, Publicity, Social Media, TV, Video, Word of Mouth, YouTube. Bookmark the permalink.

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