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Make Your Own Viral Video

By M. Graupmann
|  Wednesday, Mar 17, 2010  |  Updated 3:26 AM CDT
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As YouTube continues to grow, so do the numbers of amateur videographers hoping to make it big with their own viral videos.

Viral videos are those unbelievable Internet tidbits you cannot help but share with your friends and family and so quickly spread like viruses throughout the country.

But according to the SXSW Interactive/Film panel “How to Make a Viral Video”, making your video capture mainstream attention requires a tested formula and a lot of luck.

Saturday’s panel consisted of TEDTalks co-creator Jason Wishnow, YouTube Experience Manager Margaret Gould Stewart and OK Go band member Damian Kulash.

Videos go viral, said Stewart, “whenever viewers want to be a part of the distribution.” Therefore, “knowing your audience and their interests is the first step” toward YouTube notoriety.

“Including a universal experience like laughter, love, failure, pets and food will up your chances to be seen," Stewart said. "Consider, for instance, the proliferation of adorable kitten videos on the internet."

Getting at root human emotions like wonder and surprise will capture your audience’s attention.

"Then try to do something impossible,” said Kulash.

Kulash is familiar with this concept. His band, OK Go , has gained a rabid following of online fans due to their incredibly creative and unabashedly joyful music videos such as “Here It Goes Again” and “This Too Shall Pass.”


 

M. Graupmann writes for Austin's KXAN.com.

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