Occasionally, when forming a content strategy for a client, we’ll hear the question: “Why should I care about creating viral content, if what I really want to do is convert sales?”
This is a great question, and one that there’s a lot of misinformation out there about.
Going viral as a business is important because it clues you in on three important data points: what a general audience cares about, what makes them care, and what makes them lose interest. When you understand these three things, you are more equipped to convert sales.
“OK,” you might be thinking, “Why not just focus solely on conversion then?”
The answer? You can’t focus solely on conversion because there’s simply no way to study conversion. You can’t look at a piece of content your competitor created and see how well it converted. Without the ability to methodically research, you’ll just be stumbling around blindly, hoping to luck into a piece of creative that converts. And just simply guessing isn’t a good foundation to build your advertising strategy on.
On the contrary, we can study virality. It’s very easy to get a clear picture of what people pay attention to (and what they don’t) by looking at the number of views on a video. Now, by studying virality, we know what people like and respond to, and can create an educated hypothesis regarding how well how future content we create will perform.
We don’t have to reinvent the wheel or test each piece of content we produce as rigorously, because there’s already mountains of data out there we can utilize in forming our strategy. If we concretely know a certain video format has proven viral potential, for example, it only makes sense to incorporate that information in our content strategy.
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