You finish writing a post. You’ve worked really hard for it. And then you want it to be read by tons of people everywhere – that is, you want it to go viral. It depends on a lot of factors – the timing of your post, the length of the post, your blog readers etc. Here are some things I have noticed in great blog posts which went viral on social networking sites.
A post will go viral if :
1. It has a catchy headline: Whatever you have written in your post should be explained in a single line. If your headline is not catchy or attractive, chances are, people won’t even bother to read the post. You must convince the reader to read your post through your headline. A headline may consist of a question, important keywords, and terms like “useful”, “helpful” etc. Make sure that the titles are not too long. Remember, on social networking sites, readers skim through thousands of tweets, and if your headline is not powerful enough, people won’t read the article. Also, do not misguide people with your headline just to catch attention – it will disappoint the readers.
2. It is something different: People are constantly looking out for something different. There are loads of blogs out there and if your content stands out from them, it will go viral. Keep thinking of unique topics to write on.
3. The content is interesting: If your post contains tips – photography tips, designing tips, twitter tips, blogging tips etc, it has a high chance of going viral on social networking sites. Whatever you write about, if it has useful information and is well researched – people will read it.
4. It is relevant: The timing matters. Now that a new social networking site Google+ has joined the Social media bandwagon, everybody is writing about it. Some posts are ever-green posts – that is, they can be tweeted months later and still be relevant. While some posts are more about current topics. If the matter is current and fresh content, it can go viral!
5. It is controversial: If a blog post has content which opposes something or turns a topic on its head, it garners attention. For example: “5 reasons why Facebook is for losers”, “4 signs you’re doing social media wrong” etc.
6. It is funny: Content + Entertainment = Bingo! It depends on the topic you’re writing on though. A serious topic should not poke fun at anything, but a sarcastic post can definitely generate laughs and become popular.
7. It is a list: Everybody likes lists. Most (Almost all) of the posts on this blog are lists. Lists make it easier to read and understand. Readers love numbers. “5 reasons why..”, “6 things to remember..”, “4 signs of…”,“Top 10” etc posts always rock.
8. It is an interview of someone influential: Interviews of great people are awesome because you can learn something new from it and people get to see a different side of the influencer through the interview.
Apart from the above points, promoting it well also matters. Sometimes great posts by newbie bloggers go unnoticed because of lack of promotion and readership. I think the key is to keep working hard, keep building connections and maintaining loyal readers. What do you think? Do you have any more tips to add? Let me know in the comments!