Virtues that Make Popular Digital Platforms Go Viral

“Do it with passion, or not at all.” Rosa Nouchette Carey. The key to a successful business model lies in the founder’s creative and innovative understanding of the market. Shrewdness and perseverance are crucial qualities in building a successful business. Shrewdness is instrumental since it helps the founder distinguish and enhance the key components for his business. Perseverance is also vital since it gives the founder the willingness to move forward regardless of the difficulties. Insistence and determination summarize the “secrets” behind the success and the virality of the popular digital platforms; Vice, Netflix, and BuzzFeed.

“Credit: Collage from each platform’s website”

Understanding the mindset of millennials, Vice’s founders; Shane Smith and Suroosh Alvi were clever enough to transform a printed local magazine to a global multimedia company. Vice is characterized by its unique content style. Vice’s free & edgy content model helped the company to get close to the youth’s personalities. Vice’s journalism style of delivering stories is designed to attract young people. Young people usually search for a “modern”, “soft headed”, and “immersionistic” approach to get news. Vice succeeds in engaging youth by offering them diverse business lines & free of charge content. Vice’s reliance is based on its founders’ personality rather than technology. Reporting “true”, “raw”, and “honest” stories from the ground made Vice “special” to its targeted audience.

Shane Smith and Suroosh Alvi, Vice’s founders. “Credit: www.voanews.com

While Vice focused on a niche market through creating an edgy content, BuzzFeed venture is based on technology. BuzzFeed’s founder; Jonah Peretti wanted to go VIRAL with the different aspects of stories via diverse approaches that are suitable for each online platform. Once BuzzFeed got popularity, the team started to create Native Advertising Campaigns. Therefore, BuzzFeed team was clever in understanding their audience’s psychology, needs, and interests to engage them in indirect ways. Moreover, Peretti was able to understand how information spread on the web. “Big-seed marketing” approach helped BuzzFeed to go viral by directly influencing a huge number of audience “seeds” at the same time to have the maximum reach. Variety in content, approaches, platforms, and technologies lead to the BuzzFeed’s popularity.

Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed’s Founder. “Credit: www.recode.net

Reed Hastings, the CEO of the internet video streaming service “Netflix”, took into consideration that the “adaptation of new media technologies in people’s lifestyles is becoming one of the most important ways to ensure attention”. Netflix’s smart shift from mail-order DVD rentals to Internet streaming and video-on-demand (VOD) was the turning point that lead to the success of Netflix venture. Building a high level of trust between the platform and the consumers was essential in Netflix’s global expansion. New releases, exclusive & original content, and high quality videos made Netflix “the pioneer and the dominant power in the internet streaming services industry”.

Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix. “Credit: www.ibtimes.com

To conclude, several elements can lead to the success of Digital Media platforms. Our last session summarized these factors. Being focused on the “unique” purpose, and on the coherent strategy and vision of the platform will result in a strong leadership. That will eventually lead to a creative and an influential work atmosphere. Being up-to-date to the new demands, digital technologies, and innovative approaches will help draw the attention of target audience and engage in the platform. Last but not least, the inception of a new business should take into account the competitive market need, the integration of technology and lifestyle, and the dynamic shift in the field. Hence, this will allow the business to thrive and be prosperous.