I was planning on writing something different than this topic, but something out of the ordinary happened. My photo went viral.
Here is How I Got Over 900K Views In One Day
We bought two cute puppies, Watson and Eugene. They did something cute and we took a picture.
Then, we posted this image on our Facebook page. An average puppy post gets about 40 likes over the course of 1 or 2 days. This photo had nearly 200 in just over an hour. I took this as a sign and decided I'd go to reddit.
In order to post to reddit, I needed to host my photo, so I put it up on imgur. See here.
I had just signed up for a new reddit account and had 6 karma points, enough to post something. I uploaded the link with my photo and posted it to r/funny.
Up until that point, I kind of forgot about it. Then, tonight we received a text from a friend saying that our puppies were famous. So we looked it up and there they were, #6 on the Reddit channel and over 800,000 views and rapidly climbing.
I checked my reddit account to see that I had several upvotes. I looked closer at the text our friend sent and someone stole our photo and reposted it to their reddit on a different channel r/aww. It had over 6500 upvotes in just a few hours.
So what did I learn from this experience?
1. If your core group goes nuts, it's likely worth sharing with the world.
2. Imgur is a hot spot to upload photos and get some exposure.
3. Reddit really can make something go viral, so make sure to post on all of the relevant channels so that you can earn those karma points instead of someone who steals your content.
4. Its important to get lucky. We were lucky with the cute photo, and although we didn't get the karma points we deserved, we were lucky someone posted it into a different channel to get the exposure our puppies deserve ;)
PS. You didn't think I actually had the key to going viral? I don't. I do hope the 4 learnings above will help you get a bit closer to identifying viral potential.
There are smart people out there that do have those answers. Like Jonah Berger, author of Contagious.