Change Your Mindset to Increase Your Odds of Going Viral

going viral

Having a product, blog post, video or any other aspect of your business go viral can be a huge boost. But unfortunately, there’s no way to guarantee, or even plan, for viral success.

Joe Braidwood, chief marketing officer of SwiftKey, said during a panel discussion on growth hacking at VentureBeat’s 2015 MobileBeat conference:

“It’s a bit like product-market fit — you know when you hit it, but you don’t know you get there ’til you get there.”

In fact, SwiftKey experienced just that a few weeks ago. The smart keyboard for mobile devices ended up on the front page of Reddit. And that appearance resulted in 32,000 comments for the company. Braidwood said of the experience:

“That’s viral. You can’t engineer it. It just happens.”

But just because you can’t engineer virality doesn’t mean that you can’t put yourself in the best possible situation for that viral success to happen.

At the MobileBeat conference Manish Chandra, founder and chief executive of Poshmark, also spoke about factors that can contribute to viral success, saying:

“Things that make them feel loved more, make more money, feel smarter — those are the units you need to type into your system to allow people to share. It’s really looking at what is going to make that person feel better.”

In basic terms: customers don’t care what you say about yourself. They care more about themselves – what you can do for them, how you can make them feel, etc. The products, visuals, advertisements and other materials you can create that resonate with customers in that way are the ones most likely to go viral.

So before releasing your next product or ad campaign, try to view it from the point of view of a customer. You might just be able to increase your chances of viral success.

Viral Content Photo via Shutterstock


Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

2 Reactions
  1. Agree. Some marketers think there is a formula in things going viral. if there is, then that means that most viral content have things under control. But the truth is that they don’t.

    • Yep – it’s not something you can really force. You just have to try some different things and see what resonates.