What You’re Missing about “Going Viral”
This Changes Everything…
Writers like to believe quality content will naturally rise to the top like cream in coffee.
Sadly, that’s not always the case…
Two other things come into play as to whether something goes viral, which is why “luck” often appears like is involved. In reality, there are 3 ingredients swirling around each other that need to bond for something to go viral.
The three key ingredients for “virality”
It of course does start with content, preferably written in a flow state. But without the right timing and platform, even brilliant content may barely strike a collective chord…
My first clue was when I wrote a piece in August 2021. The piece quickly amassed 20,000 views, before seemingly dropping off the face of the Earth.
Almost a year later in July 2022, I freshly republished the piece in another (similar-sized) publication. It racked up about about 65 views. The difference? Timing.
The story subject was: “How to Fit in Anywhere (even if you’re new).”
People are in a vastly different mindset today. A year ago, many hoped Covid was about to become a thing of the past and were finally getting out for the first time in a while. People actually wanted to “fit in” again…
Fast forward a year, and people are a bit lost and confused today, newly isolated in different ways with a war raging in Europe while inflation, crime and political divide unsettle America…
Today, the “group mind” is focused more on surviving than “fitting in”…
The same content welcomed a year ago was all but ignored this year.
“How to fit in anywhere” might better perform today as “How to survive anywhere.”
Aside from content and timing, the other key ingredient is the platform where the content appears. Medium? Twitter? Youtube?
The prolific writings of Tim Denning first revealed to me this concept, and since I realized it’s one of the greatest factors in how content is received.
The zeitgeist, or vibe, on Twitter is vastly different than Facebook… Facebook is different than Instagram (even though they’re both owned by Meta … sigh). And TikTok is a different beast than YouTube, even though they’re both feeding videos to the masses.
As an example of how much platform makes a difference, I once made a video describing concepts of how energy works in Qigong. The video somehow amassed 200,000 views on TikTok.
So, I posted the same video over on a Qigong Facebook Group for the hundreds of people interested in the practice, yet the video was barely noticed and garnered around 30 views.
My only explanation is that the first platform had younger viewership who were less informed about such topics. Either way, platform matters … big time. And had I only posted the video on Facebook, I would’ve missed the large audience on another platform.
In the end…
Quality content shines when it resonates with the “vibe” of the platform and “collective consciousness” of the times. As for “luck,” that seems to arrive with less thinking and more action, until a momentum builds that carries us away into the flow of what we’re doing. ✨