What I learned from helping make multiple viral videos

Eugene K. Choi
Feb 7, 2018 · 5 min read
Photo by rawpixel.com on Unsplash

This is it.

The great business idea you had is finally developed and you’re ready to show it to the world.

You don’t have a bunch of money to pay for marketing so instead, you promote the crap out of it on all your social media channels.

You initially see a positive response, but it’s only limited to a few close friends of yours who believe in you. After a day or so, everything dies down and then, silence.

You wanted to make a much bigger impact, but it didn’t go as far as you thought it would.

Disappointed, you feel like a failure and never want to try again.

The reality is what you made actually may have been something great, but it didn’t get the reach you were expecting because of how you were sharing your message.

I once edited a short film, Blind Devotion, for the Jubilee project and it unexpectedly went viral with currently over 23 million views. Another one we worked on also went viral and ended up getting featured on various television talk shows.

We didn’t have a huge following compared to other successful YouTube artists nor did we have any celebrities in the videos. This led me to wanting to figure out why these films generated so many views and learn about how we can apply the same qualities to businesses in order to generate much more leads.

After doing some further investigation, I’ve realized there are a few key questions you need to ask about your marketing content if you want it to reach the maximum amount of people without having to pay a ton of money.

Is The Content Something People Would Want to Share With Their Friends?

Something going viral relies purely on how much it gets shared with others. This is what causes something to go into a trending mode and it snowballs into something huge.

It starts with asking yourself the question, “If I were to see, read, or hear this for the first time, would it make me want to share it?”

The content should move you to the point where you’d gladly share it with them because you feel it would benefit your friends to see it.

Does Your Marketing Bring Out an Emotion Out of You?

Whether its a video, sales letter or audio, in order for your content to reach as much people, it first must bring out an emotion in the viewer.

Most of the comments we got for Blind Devotion was about how it made them cry. It was such a heartwarming love story about it made all our viewers get the “feels.”

One of the classic advertisements that went super viral were these Thai life insurance commercials you didn’t even know was for life insurance until the end of the short film.

The film makes you cry because of how touching the story is and you can’t help but share this beautiful story with your friends and then they share it with their friends.

Is There Something Unique in Your Content That’s Unexpected?

When you experience something unexpected, it engages your brain. With the overload of marketing content out there, it’s easy to filter out a lot of it since you’ve seen so many of the same tactics used.

However, if the audience experiences something new and fresh that either adds some sort of shock value or helps enlighten them, it stands out to them and actively engages them in the moment.

This would naturally be a huge boost to your branding.

For Blind Devotion, the unexpected moment was when the perspective changed from the wife to the husband’s. For the Thai life insurance commercial, it was the moment the daughter realizes who it was saving her father’s life.

The Issue With Going Viral Most People Don’t Realize

You would think just because your marketing campaign went viral, it would generate a ton of more leads, but this is totally false.

Our most successful short film may have generated 23 million views, but only a small fraction of the viewers turned into subscribers who stay regularly updated with our content.

I realized it wasn’t how viral your content is that helps your business stay afloat. The most vital thing to the survival of your business is loyalty. And this is only created when we begin to create authentic connection with our clients.

Loyal customers are the ones who will regularly purchase your products and stay updated with what you’re doing. They’re the ones who will still buy from you even though there may be comparable services and products that are cheaper.

When there’s a sea of competition, you can only beat them by connecting better with your customers. Not just by impressing them.

So how can we apply this to our own businesses?

The best way to get clients is by impressing them less and connecting with them more.

One of the most effective ways to connect with potentially loyal customers is to clearly communicate your company’s purpose, cause or belief through your messaging. When people identify with it, they will feel a strong connection to your company as a result and inspire them to take action.

Related: The Most Effective Marketing Strategy Ever (And it’s Free)

Imagine an advertisement without a word about how many awards they’ve won or why their product is the best product, but it simply starts talking about a big problem you’ve been having and empathizes with your situation.

You now feel more understood by this ad and you somewhat feel a little connected so your loyalty shifts over to this brand because you feel like they share your same values and understand what you’re going through.

When the marketing is genuine, it can create great customer relationships and there is a huge need for better businesses in this world that helps fulfill a need and solve important problems in our society rather than seeing customers as a statistic on the quarterly report.

So here’s to finding more of your ideal clients, connecting with them on a deeper level, and changing the world.

If you enjoyed this post and ever thought about starting a business of your own, you can download my free guide, Getting Unstuck, One Practical Step to Get Out of The 9-to-5 Life.

I share about the practical financial steps I took to be able to quit my high paying job, go on a cross-country road trip for two months and then move to Los Angeles to try out filmmaking for a year.

This story is published in The Startup, Medium’s largest entrepreneurship publication followed by 294,522+ people.

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Eugene K. Choi

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I use brain science help stuck professionals find their unique life purpose in two days or less Free guide @ http://destinyhacks.co

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