Stories of personal triumph make the best viral videos
It’s not all cute babies and cat videos.
Stories of personal triumph make the most viral videos, according to research published in Viral Marketing: The Science of Sharing.
This table is from Karen Nelson-Field’s research and shows the average number of shares per day based on the creative type of the video.
Videos that have stories of personal triumph were shared FAR more than any other category in Field’s study.
This has important implications for small business owners who help their customers solve problems.
Does your business help people solve problems?
Table of Contents
- Use the Happiness Scale to create a vision for your business
- Use the Net Promoter Score to measure customer happiness
- Video viewers don’t distinguish emotional content in video from real life
- Mirror neurons allow viewers to ‘feel’ emotional content in videos
- Use the Proximity Rule to build trust on video
- Develop your online personality with intent
- Tell the Worlds’ Simplest Story
- Become an Online Influencer
Use the Happiness Scale to create a vision for your business
How happy are your customers when they’ve completed an exchange with you?
Sam Altman of the Y Combinator start-up incubator in Silcon Valley urged founders to create a ‘Happiness Scale’ to envision how customers would perceive and interact with their start-up business.
The scale goes from 1 to 10; almost no happiness with the business to extreme happiness.
It’s important to realize the Happiness scale helps you create YOUR vision for your company:
This exercise will help you figure out how good your company is at making customers happy.
Next, you need to measure to see if you ACTUALLY made your customers happy.
In other words, did you help them achieve their personal triumph?
Use the Net Promoter Score to measure customer happiness
Next, you should measure how your customers percieve your company. This allows you to guage how likely they are to give you a Goggle Review or a video testimonial.
- Take a look at the Net Promoter Score (NPS) – a tool that actually measures the customer satisfaction your business creates.
It’s a simple tool, a scale from 1 to 10, that predicts how often people will refer your business to their family, friends and neighbors.
Learn how to ‘Measure customer satisfaction with the Net Promoter Score (NPS) here.
What if you could capture customer happiness on video? What if you could capture stories of personal triumph, routinely, on video?
Your chance of creating ongoing, viral video content in your small business would increase in direct proportion to the number of videos you create.
Video viewers don’t distinguish emotional content in video from real life
What people ‘see’ on video is often indistinguishable from real life from an emotional standpoint…
- that’s why we cry at movie theaters
- that’s why we get agitated at political speeches
- that’s why we feel happy when we laugh at a funny YouTube video.
Brain scans of people watching videos show the same activation patterns as brain scans of people actually doing the things in the videos.
Read the blogpost ‘Your Brain Sees the same in Video as IRL’
Mirror neurons allow viewers to ‘feel’ emotional content in videos
‘Mirror neurons’ in our brains allow us to feel the emotion being converyed in the video;
- When we see a hungry child’s face in a poverty video, we feel charity and compassion.
- When we see terrified people fleeing a tsunami we feel horror and concern.
- When we see an actress face in a TV show cry during an emotional scene we feel her pain and we cry, too.
How do we feel these peoples’ pain? After all, it’s only a TV show or an online video, right?
What is the physical basis that communicates emotions among people?
Even people who are simply viewing video online?
Mirror neurons were only discovered in 1994 but they have HUGE implications for online content creators.
Emotionally charged videos are more likely to be shared than non-emotional videos.
Sharing videos leads to the viral phenomenom that marketers seek.
This chart is also from Nelson-Field’s Viral Marketing: The Science of Sharing.
‘Valence’ is the observation that positive videos get shared at a slightly higher rate than negative videos. But, both get shared at about double the rate of low-emotion (arousal) videos.
Use the Proximity Rule to build trust on video
The Proximity Rule is the observation that every society all over the world has Zones of Proximity within which we only allow people we trust.
In other words, when someone gets too close and we don’t know them, we get uncomfortable. Because, we don’t know if they are a friend or an enemy.
We don’t yet trust them. This is why elevators are so awkward.
Check out the details on the Proximity Rule here.
In western society, we only allow people within 18 inches of our body if they are friends, lovers or babies.
The Proximity Rule was first written about in 1964 in Dr. Edward T. Hall’s The Hidden Dimension but it has big implications for marketers in 2022.
The Proximity Rule for Online Video in 2022
On social media, we should always have at least 2 people in the image or the video – it is, after all, social.
Check out the image of Dr. Miami and Kodak Black enjoying their time together during a 30-minute facebook interview from 2016.
Here is the full-length interview:
Develop your online personality with intent
We need 2 of you in online video:
- the customer and…
- someone from the business.
No matter who appears with the customer, we need to help them get ready:
- What do I say?
- Where do I look?
- What questions do I ask?
- How long should we talk?
Read ‘How to ask for a video testimonial’ to answer these questions.
- Where do I sit in relation to the customer?
- Do we need lighting or special cameras?
Finally, what is the voice, the attitude and the personality of the person interviewing the customer?
We’ve all got a point-of-view that comes across on video – let’s maximize that to your advantage!
Develop your online personality with intent – use our Online Influencer Checklist be be intentional about how you appear on camera.
Tell the Worlds’ Simplest Story
Finally, we need to ask the customer to tell their story of personal triumph.
- How did you help them?
- What made them better or solved their problem?
The basic idea is that you want to guide the interview to end up with a 90 second video that asks 3 questions.
- How did we meet?
- What were you like when we met?
- How are you now?
The 3 questions (and answers) create a narrative arc that keeps your audience watching the entire video.
High user engagement, near 100% watchtime and staying on the platform will help your videos’ performance with the social media algorithms, from TikTok to YouTube to Facebook.
The algorithm will suggest the video to other users which has been shown to improve the opportunity to go viral.
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!