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Become a Micro-Influencer in Your Own Zip Code with Viral Videos

December 1, 2020 | Web Marketing

You’re good at what you do – your customers LOVE you…

You’re even known in your local community. You’re a small business owner; a doctor, lawyer or real estate agent.

Now what?

How can you leverage that love?

Viral Videos by Small Business Owners

Check out this guy…

Viral Video by a Real Estate Agent

Montana Realtor Viral Video

This gentleman is a real estate agent from Montana – he got over 2 million views on his homemade video in just over 18 months.

  • He had a great hook (hint: read the title).
  • He was honest and plainspoken.
  • He timed his video to meet the demand for rural living from city dwellers fleeing urban neighborhoods during the 2020 COVID pandemic.

From Sept 2020 to Feb 2022 he got over 2,758,259 views and 4,256 comments.

That’s a viral video by anyones’ definition…

What is a Viral Video?

Karen Nelson-Field has defined a viral video – and the hurdle is not as high as you might think – you don’t need 2 million views…

“…it is the degree to which your video is shared above expectation for the level of views it has received…”

Viral Marketing, Karen Nelson-Field

Every small business owner has the potential to create a viral video that draws in new customers by the handful…

… you just need to know how to do it.

Check out “What is a Viral Video?” – the scientific definition.

We can help coach you to create viral videos; keep reading…

Viral Video Examples

Here’s a used car dealer near Tampa, Florida that went viral in 2017 with a text ad that went viral:

Viral Video by a Used Car Salesman

  • He’s funny (at the risk of offending some people)
  • He’s honest
  • He gets to the point – even if he was trying to be funny, he keeps coming back to the point that the car ‘cranks’, the air blows cold (in Florida this is VERY important) and the radio works.

But, this ad wasn’t written by a professional ad writer or copywriter!

In this new online age, that just doesn’t matter. The people get to decide. Your viewers are the ones who share your video – they get to decide!

So, if you’re trying to achieve viral success, worry less about the specific words and more about the emotional impact and the context of your message.

Here is the full-test ad (warning: the ad uses some graphic language!)

"Nothing special or pretty about this car. 200k miles.

"Rust on the side. I even zoomed in on the rust so you can see it. This car runs and drives. The air blows cold and it has a cd player. Thats it. Nothing more nothing less. Dont bring your ass down here saying it looks different in the pics or you didn't know it had that much rust. Im telling you right now. This bitch rusty. This shit is $900 dollars. You're getting 900 dollars worth of car. No I do not have any wiggle room. You can wiggle yo ass down to another dealership.

"Dont ask me about the check engine light or this light or that light. Its 900 dollars. Its gone be some lights on in this mothafucka. As is. Dont bring this shit back for nothing. It has 200k plus miles. You damn right u gone find something wrong with it but as for now it cranks. Steers an drives. Blows cold ass air. An won't leave your pockets bare. This will get you from A to B. Just dont try to make it to C. An dont bring that bitch back to me. This car will last you at least ALL SPRING '17."

The ad was created by Shelmar Pierre Roseman who worked at Journee Autos in Largo, Florida in 2017.

Shelmar’s original Facebook post immediately gained a lot of attention, with over 30,000 shares and more than 20,000 comments.

The auto dealership ended up selling the car.

But, you’re probably thinking, “I’m not a real estate agent in Montana or a car salesman in Tampa – how can I make a viral video and become a micro influencer in my zip code?

Well, let’s take a look at one more viral video (since tomorrow is Super Bowl Sunday) of a small town Georgia lawyer who went viral on super Bowl Sunday in 2014.

After that, we’ll get into the details of how you create viral video content.

Viral Video by a Small Town Lawyer

Where do I start?

  • High-arousal content (Keren Nelson-Field’s words, not mine) – how can you NOT get up out of your seat watching this video?
  • Shareable – who DOESN’T need a lawyer who wields a flaming sledgehammer?
  • Controversial? – Sure. I’m in my silo and you’re in yours. How can we break though those walls? Maybe a guy with a flaming sledgehammer?

Jamie Casino’s 2014 ad has been seen 5,887,743 times. That video has generated 1,310 comments.

But, most small businesses won’t need Jamie Casino’s big budget, cinematic style with their viral video. In this case, it worked (he has other videos that did not go viral).

Viral Video by a Physician

This next example is a physician in Miami, Florida. He has a mix of both raw video online and more highly-produced content.

Dr. Miami has had several videos go viral – this is just one example.

We have blogged frequently about Dr. Miami because he is such a prolific poster on Facebook, YouTube but primarily on SnapChat – where he first went viral in 2016 with real life videos of his surgical procedures.

This is his 2016 interview with rapper Koday Black – just one of Dr. Miami’s many celebrity encounters.

  • Dr. Miami is at ease with the rapper – drawing out the conversation with questions.
  • Dr. Miami dances with Kodak Black
  • Dr. Miami features other people, Kodak Black’s family and girlfriend, in the video.

We even highlighted Dr. Miami’s 10 Interview Techniques you should copy when talking to your clients on video – even if they are not celebrities.

Dr. Miami Uses the Proximity Rule with Kodak Black

One of the most effective techniques any 2-person interview video should use is the Proximity Rule.

The Proximity Rule

“Always sit or stand close enough to be within the Intimate Zone of the other person (<18 inches) while on social video.”

Disclaimer: In 2022, we must respect social distancing, mask and vaccination status. Most of these videos were taken before the pandemic.

Social video should be social – get together.

That’s what Dr. Miami does so well with his clients.

Famous comedian Steve Harvey with Dr. Miami
Famous comedian Steve Harvey with Dr. Miami – demonstrating the Proximity Rule

Viewers don’t distinguish, conciously, the emotions they feel while watching your video from real life. This is why we cry at the movies.

The most important emotion for your viewers is trust.

Small business owners need to be trusted in their communities. Viewers see you in a video with a customer within their Intimate Zone and they trust you – because your customer trusts you.

This perception of emotions – trust – works though mirror neurons in our heads.

How Viral Videos Get Shared

Finally, why would anyone share your video?

So, that brings us back to the viral video researcher, Karen Nelson-Fields, who showed that a triumphant personal story is, by a factor of 10x, the #1 reason videos get shared and go viral.

“The most successful creative approach appears to be to feature personal triumph. When a video included a creative story of personal triumph, it shared more than other creative devices…

Personal triumph, therefore, represents the best opportunity for marketers.”

Viral Marketing, p.38

But, aren’t personal stories hard to make because they are, well, personal?

Again, Karen Nelson-Fields:

“Interestingly, despite being a more applicable creative device for ensuring sharing success, personal triumph videos are rarely displayed in viral video content (<3% of the time).”

Viral Marketing, p.39

So, here comes the sales pitch – yes, but, not really.

Since you are a small business operator, you already have all the tools you need to make viral videos.

The most important is access to your customers and their stories.

Learn more about “What is a Viral Video?”

Steps to Make a Viral Video in Your Small Business

  1. Identify your happiest customer – here is how to identify your happiest customer.
  2. Ask them to tell THEIR story online – here is how to get them to tell their story.
  3. Video them – how to ask for a video testimonial
  4. Ask them to share the video – how to ask someone share your video

Get the free app – save time and $$

If you are an influencer who deals face-to-face with people, like a dentist or a real estate agent, you can become an online influencer using short, testimonial videos on popular social platforms.

We can show you how.

Do you like all the hosting and posting?

All the hashtags, hypertext links and tech-y stuff?

If not, just let the WOW Promoter app do it for you – for free!

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