If you’re going to try and be successful on the internet, then it’s probably a goal of yours to “go viral”. I understand the appeal. Its easy exposure for your product/service/etc. and you might even get real life famous off of it. However not only is it nearly impossible to predict internet trends, but some social media sites have no worth to go viral on. For example…
If you go viral on Tumblr, do you know what you get? Nothing. Actually that’s a lie, you get a ton of ‘notes’ that fill up your activity. But notes mean nothing besides a unit of measurement for the site. There’s no way to monetize your content on Tumblr and Tumblr, in fact, makes money off of your content (read the terms and conditions for once) so really if your post goes viral, you’re just helping Tumblr out.
The problem with Tumblr is that 35% of its user base makes less than 30k a year, making it one of the “poorest” sites. That means if you have an awesome product, no matter how many “notes” your advertisement gets, people still probably won’t buy it. Your only benefit to going viral on Tumblr is if you have a free mobile app where most of your money comes from advertisements on the app. Tumblr loves those things, especially if they get to make fun of it ruthlessly over and over again.
I mean Google, all hail the overlord, will love you just for using their site but honestly this is a site that boasts over 2.5 million accounts (nearly double of Facebook) but less than 10% of the accounts are active on Google+. How? Well do you have a Gmail account? Congrats. You also have a Google+ account.
I have no thoughts on going viral through Google+ because it’s never happened before. More power to you if you manage to achieve it. But the odds are strongly against you.
Is Snapchat a fascinating and unique tool for internet marketing? Yes. Will you get a wide audience? Yes. Can you go viral off of it? Absolutely not.
First off no matter what you’re advertising, you’ll always be asking your audience to get off Snapchat and find your product. YouTube videos, your artwork, a neat pair of shoes…none of that is accessible through Snapchat which means you lose every single lazy viewer who just wants to click a link to get there. So everyone. You’ve lost everyone.
Second, again like Tumblr, there’s no way to monetize snaps. So you’re just basically giving people news updates on your products and you have to do it in less than 10 seconds. There’s a reason there’s no “Snapchat celebrities”. It’s because it’s hard as hell and no real benefit to it. The best you can do is already be a celebrity and then be on Snapchat.
Who would’ve guessed that the world’s biggest social media site is actually one of the worst sites to go viral on? Well consider this: it’s too big. It’s cluttered with thousands of “Share for a Prayer!” and “5,000,000,000 likes and my mom will be a reasonable human being and quit smoking” while simultaneously restricting everyone’s profiles by structuring them to the utmost privacy. You’re never going to reach everyone fast enough to achieve “viral” status.
Facebook was created for friends and family, not internet fame. If you want to be internet famous, aim for YouTube, Vine, or Instagram. All of them are platforms ripe for internet fame with huge user bases. People are making livings on these platforms alone without going viral. For these websites going viral is a dream, but not an impossible one.
Even though they’re terrible sites to go viral on, I’m still on most of them! Follow my Tumblr, Google+ (if you’re part of the 10%), and Facebook page for updates about this blog. You can also follow my YouTube, Vine, Instagram, and Twitter before I inevitably go viral on at least one of them.