Writing viral stories is different than writing a blog post that’s optimized for SEO. While search engine optimization will get the attention of Google’s algorithms, you’re not trying to entice a robot. Instead, you’re trying to get the attention of people and encouraging them to share your content with their peers.
This is easier said than done, but it’s possible. Here are some viral copy tips to help your post become the next big thing your audience is buzzing about.
The biggest hurdle you’ll need to jump over is enticing readers to click on your content in the first place. That’s where your headline comes in.
Headlines need to communicate some type of emotional benefit to the reader. Make sure it describes your article clearly and distinctly, using numbers or statistics whenever possible. Effective headlines also create a sense of urgency that encourages the reader to act quickly – for example, “5 Reasons Why You Need to Change Your Facebook Privacy Settings Right Away.”
Writing about a controversial topic doesn’t mean you need to write something that is sensational or intentionally pot-stirring. A controversial post should be debatable or questionable and invite conversation. It presents an alternative viewpoint that can be backed up by credible sources or data. Challenge a common mentality or pose an opinion that might cause someone to raise an eyebrow, as long as it’s something you authentically believe.
Take a look at the trending bar on Twitter, check out websites like BuzzSumo, and scroll through Reddit. Websites like these will give you a good idea of the topics that your audience is already talking about and would love more insight or another perspective on. Try to spin your article to tie into these current events. For example, with the elections taking place right now in the United States, an effective headline could be something like, “Business Lessons You Can Learn From These Failed Political Campaigns.”
There’s a reason why cute animal videos and inspirational stories always seem to be flooding your news feed. People love content that tugs at their heartstrings and conveys emotion, so try and plug that into your writing. Tell an impactful story about how you went above and beyond for a customer, or share a powerful message that your CEO sent out. People love stories that show the underdog winning, or the human side of corporations. Play into that.