How to make your video go viral

So you have a video, or want to make a video, and you want everyone in the world to see it. What do you do?

There are six tips you should consider when trying to make a viral video:

1) Content. The key to any great video is content. Nobody wants to watch a bad video or a fake video. If you truly have something honest to say or do, then say it or show it.  The power of the content will carry you far.

You should also consider the length of the video. Nobody wants to watch a five minute video where the first four and a half minutes are boring.  Chop the video down to the good stuff, and get to the point quickly.

2) Multiple names.  Until you know what will make your video popular, try uploading it several times using several different names.  That way, you can see which words in your title get more views.  

Also, make sure you put words in your title that are special to your video or you think people would type when trying to find your video.

3) Outreach. Don't upload the video then export the world to find it on their own. Post the link on some popular blogs and forums... you may even try creating several free accounts on each of these forums, so you can have a conversation with yourself about how awesome the video is.  People love to jump on the bandwagon of something they believe other people think is great.

Also, post the video on your Facebook and MySpace pages... some of these walls and chat rooms allow you to embed the video player directly.  And, send the link by email to your friends, the local newspaper and TV station, etc. All it takes, sometimes, is one news story to create a tidal wave of publicity.

4) Thumbnail optimization.  Make the photo associated with your video the best spot in the video.  Bad thumbnails mean a person is less likely to click play.

5) Make comments.  Comment on your own video about how great it is, or how much work you put in to making it. The key here is to be honest.  Nobody likes someone they can't trust, especially online.

6) Tagging. Make sure you put words in the tag box that people may use to find your videos or videos that you want to be associated with. This will help your video get pushed to the top of the list and get associated to existing videos.

For an example of viral videos, check out the DcuStudios2 channel at

Dennis Washington
New Media Content Director,