Virality is “the tendency of an image, video, or piece of information to be circulated rapidly and widely from one Internet user to another; the quality or fact of being viral.”
Sharing , “liking” and spreading information is at the core of social media. Almost all social media platforms are designed to facilitate virality (i.e: Facebook’s “like” button, Twitter’s “retweet” button, Pinterest “pin” or Tumblr’s “reblog” option). Creating viral content has become an essential concern for advertisers and some marketing firms claim to specialize in the form (i.e: Thinkmodo).
Although there are no steadfast rules one can follow to identify or create viral content, a study by Jonah Berger showed that strong emotions are often at play:
“Content that evokes high-arousal positive (awe) or negative (anger or anxiety) emotions is more viral. Content that evokes low-arousal, or deactivating, emotions (e.g., sadness) is less viral.”
– “What Makes Online Content Viral?” – Study by Jonah Berger